Now is the time of year that colds, flu and sinus infections run rampant. On top of having a lowered immune system due to the weather, motivated sistas also have to cope with the stress of pursuing goals, taking care of their families and the modern-day workplace. Whenever the weather turns nasty I usually get a cold and I have only myself to blame. Its usually caused by me not getting enough sleep, not eating properly and not drinking enough water. What usually cures my cold and my burn out are a week of adequate sleep, my grandma’s home remedies and listening to my body.
You may or may not get ill but you’ve probably experienced burnout – prolonged exposure to stress that causes you to feel exhausted, mentally depleted and overwhelmed. You lose motivation, become irritable and your production decreases. Now stress and burnout aren’t the same thing – usually you’ve been dealing with stress for a while and then feel burned out. Once you reach burnout, you start not to care about your commitments because you’ve been tired for so long. No one likes to deal with burnout and sometimes we feel helpless to prevent it. Here are some tips to alleviate the symptoms of burnout.
Start and/or end the day with relaxation
When you feel burned out, your body and your mind start to feel worn down. Beginning and ending the day with a few minutes of “me” time can help to recharge your batteries. Use this time to pray, meditate, write in your journal or take a long, hot bath. Taking time for yourself, even if its only a few minutes, goes a long way in boosting your mental and physical endurance.
Get back on track with healthy diet and exercise
If your increased responsibilities have caused increased stress, its likely that your workout routine and healthy eating habits have fallen by the wayside. This is common because as we get busier and try to handle more responsibilities, we usually sacrifice the time we devote to ourselves in order to get things done. Try to squeeze your workouts back into your day. When you feel energized and refreshed, you can accomplish more and it’s a powerful investment in yourself. Eating fresh fruits and veggies also help with brain activities and your energy level.
Tap back into your creative outlets
Just like with healthy eating and exercise, we often neglect our creative outlets when we’re strapped for time. But your hobbies allow you to disconnect from the work day, give you a break from career and family responsibilities and allows your mind to rest while you are involved with something fun. Again, a few minutes each day goes a long way.
If you’re dealing with too much, then scale back where you can. There are core responsibilities that we can’t give up: our jobs, our families and our homes. But there are some that we don’t want to give up but aren’t essential to our lives. I’m sure the church committee that you chair or your volunteer coordinator can find someone just as competent as you who isn’t burned out. In addition, cutting the amount of time and energy you spend on external activities will free up some time for you to recharge your batteries, relax and follow your creative outlets.
What ways do you alleviate burn out? How do you prevent the symptoms from coming up?