4 Top Tips For The Busy Professional To Avoid Burnout In Difficult Times

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Are you having a hard time getting on track and regaining focus with work and life?

Burnout is something we might not be able to avoid. Health experts inform us that burnout has close links with chronic work stress. And we should recognise the difference between a busy workload and something more serious. The working world has shifted to more ‘working from home’ and the need to remain effective and motivated away from the office and your team. If you are someone who struggles to use your own initiative and cannot work autonomously, then recognising the feelings of exhaustion, mental detachment and poorer performance is key.

Often managers highlight concerns, but as an employee, it is important you place a finger on this so you do not suffer alone, but gain the help you need. Taking work issues home, being involved in other people’s emotional issues can all lead to your own emotional exhaustion. With burnout becoming an explosive situation globally, health organisations are raising crucial concerns and the prevalence of this is rising.

Browse 4 tips for the busy professional that you could slip into your schedule

  • To tackle the creation of lifestyle changes, ward off resentment in situations and avoid burnout that follows in difficult times.
  • Recognising early signs can allow you to realise what causes those resentful feelings and move from being self-indulgent or self-centred to self-compassionate.
  • Increasing awareness of the trigger points, to enable learning how not to isolate yourself or become emotionally unavailable to those closest to you.

Tip #1

Choosing to treat yourself with love and dignity is not self-centred

But it shows you are being accountable for your professional and personal emotions. And being mindful of not inflicting any toxic feelings towards others. At the end of the day, your well-being should be a priority. So, working long hours, not drinking enough water and skipping meals is something you can control. If you gain some insight and discover ways to manage your focus. Often it can be when you are feeling demoralised by circumstances and exhausted from all the external pressures. This is a sign to withdraw and restore yourself. And keep in mind the long-term perspective that your health and well-being should be at the top of your list. To maintain your maximum performance and productivity.

Tension is what we reach for when situations overwhelm us, however, choosing to breathe in courage and breathe out fear is the fastest and simplest form of relaxation in any moment.

  • Will you be committed to act?
  • Will you observe when you feel trapped by what is going on around you – home, work and life?

Any stress is manageable if you choose to adopt the right attitude and use change to convert any negative stress into a positive one. Because the demands in the world we live in will continue, but that shouldn’t stifle the longings of your heart to reach your goals and aspire towards your dreams. When you feel like you are in a bad mood, step out your door and take a walk in the surrounding parks and countryside. There is something magical that you can find in the moments when you move away from your critical daily life and choose to take a mini break alone in nature.

  • The quickest question you can ask yourself right now is – will this problem matter in a year’s time? Then choose yes to change it – or no to let it go.

Tip #2

Reestablish your choices – be miserable or motivate yourself

We feel caught in a cycle of burnout because we repeat the same task over and over again, and sometimes cannot see any results. Stepping away and trying to find the funny or lighter side in a situation, will allow you to gauge whether the load you carrying is worth putting down. Or it might be the way you are carrying it that feels like it is breaking you. Obstacles can be dealt with, and with prayer you will gain the strength to release stuff to God in that moment. Even if it is a simple one-line prayer. Finding the balance in life is often pointed towards how we manage our time. But it could be something as simple as introducing boundaries and better managing the boundaries you already have made.

  • When you overstretch your personal boundaries, you can lose a grip on your sense of purpose and balance.
  • When you refresh your sense of belonging, then you are able to take time to reinvigorate and nourish your overall well-being so that you can protect yourself from burnout.

It all begins with slowing down. And you can sit down and devise a plan on how your will handle pressures and how you will believe in yourself. Think of the person you know you are, never allow anyone to tell you that you are different, because you do not need to fit into the box of being someone else’s version of special or awesome.

Tip #3

Exercising happiness is your choice

If I feel that the stresses of life are affecting me, a counterintuitive way is choosing to see the happy side of the situation and taking power back over the situation by thinking about self-care. Most times we can convince ourselves that we have a challenging month, when instead we could be on the edge of burnout. Although stress can be a powerful motivator to get things done, if we continually expose ourselves to situations that cause us to get stressed or feel anxious, eventually, it will lead to burnout. I get it that you have a big project and it feels awesome with the adrenaline rush to keep aspiring higher. But finding the balance is the key. Comparatively, when you begin to feel of little value to others, avoid any social connections or become easily disappointed to the point of becoming distant or numb emotionally and mentally, and ordinary life seems like too much to deal with. This could be a sign to realise you could be reaching the top end of the scale of depletion. If you are that person who goes and never stops and is always attempting to juggle too many balls, then you might question your capabilities. The turning point is to get to the root of the problem. And that begins by being honest and asking yourself some serious questions.

  • What is going on in my life right now?
  • Are these temporary or permanent impediments?
  • Can I let go of any of these issues to help myself recover?

Tip #4

Quit trying to be perfect or cover up your feelings of being inferior to others

Work related stress can stem from feeling unfairly treated at work or unable to manage your workload or even having a lack of clarity on your role and responsibilities. If you require the support of your manager, then it is not unreasonable to ask for this. We may want to have the perfect life. From a successful job to amazing fitness goals, an impressive social life and admirable family. But don’t mislead yourself into believing what society tells you or comparing yourself to others.

  • By reviewing what to prioritise and not make unreasonable expectations for yourself.
  • By figuring out what is going wrong and not beating yourself up by attempting to manage everything all at once. Such as working from home, childcare, the anxieties of COVID-19, the need to keep fit, healthy and staying one step ahead. So that you are not hustling to the brink of exhaustion.

Where do you go from here?

Nothing lasts forever, you will get through this challenging time if you choose to remain positive, be flexible and manage your ability to cope in the day to day things. In the process, you will be amazed at the significant life skills you are acquiring to contend with pressures and stress. In addition to learning coping mechanisms such as the importance of unwinding and not choosing exhaustion to be your navigating force. Even if the pandemic is forcing us all to rapidly hit the ground running and grapple with complex decisions in an uneasy and unsettling shifting environment.

Related Post:
The One Habit You Can’t Avoid: Recognise How To Manage Your Stress Levels By Diminishing Worry
Share your thoughts…

What individual decisions are you making daily to stoke anxiety, deal with unprecedented emotional exhaustion and find new coping mechanisms?

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35 Comments

  1. 28 October 2020 / 12:32 pm

    I had (still have) this mindset that I need to help everyone because it will be selfish if I won’t. So, I keep saying yes to people. I joined so many organizations with different advocacies because I want to support these different advocacies. And I ended up burned out, and it was horrible. Instead of helping them all, I ended up quitting all of them. So, yes it is really important to take care of yourself first, and it is not selfish! Thanks for these tips, will try to practice them all <3

  2. aseger6
    28 October 2020 / 1:08 pm

    These tips were everything I needed to read right now. I’ve been worried about burnout for some time now, and this post will help me work through it and see the light at the end of the tunnel. Thank you for this!

  3. 28 October 2020 / 1:28 pm

    These are great tips. I’m a big fan of self care and have discovered taking time for me allows me more clarity and calmness to hep others. Exercise, shutting off my phone, reading and dancing to fun music help me reset.

  4. 28 October 2020 / 2:09 pm

    Thanks for the great tips! Definitely feeling burned out lately!

  5. 3 November 2020 / 1:26 pm

    As your column here suggests, we need to be purposeful about both avoiding and dealing with burnout, especially during difficult times like we have now. I think it just intensifies our personal stress. So, what am I doing? I’m working ever more (at home) but in a way that I really like and look forward to. I’ve also adopted a new attitude about the mundane in my daily life. I really, really dislike mundane things – cooking, cleaning, grocery shopping. Slowly, I’ve been changing my attitude, and I’m finding new freedom!

  6. kariminter
    3 November 2020 / 4:43 pm

    Thanks for such great tips here! I especially like #4…quit trying to be perfect =). I needed to hear that!

  7. 3 November 2020 / 7:22 pm

    These are such great tips. It is so hard to for us to realize that self-care is not selfish. But if we keep pushing ourselves eventually we will burn out. The advice you gave was great to help us recognize when we are feeling burnt out and how to help prevent it from happening in the future.

  8. 3 November 2020 / 10:03 pm

    Thanks so much for these tips! I am someone who really takes on more than I should and then feels that burnout, so I am going to try to put these into practice.

  9. 4 November 2020 / 12:21 am

    I love all of your tips on how to avoid burnout. It is easy to get stressed and caught up in the things we can’t control. But God is the same always, thanks for this very helpful post!

  10. Ava
    Author
    4 November 2020 / 5:23 pm

    Sometimes we have to learn to say no, which is difficult, but it doesn’t mean we don’t care!

  11. Ava
    Author
    4 November 2020 / 5:24 pm

    I am so glad you were encouraged!

  12. Ava
    Author
    4 November 2020 / 5:25 pm

    Absolutely we need to learn to unwind and take care of our health more!

  13. Ava
    Author
    4 November 2020 / 5:26 pm

    There are so many hidden blessings in those mundane tasks we do, but God sees and never overlooks our faithfulness!

  14. Ava
    Author
    4 November 2020 / 5:26 pm

    I am guilty of that, but it’s good sometimes to readjust our focus!

  15. Ava
    Author
    4 November 2020 / 5:27 pm

    During these tough times, we need to take care and uplift each other!

  16. Ava
    Author
    4 November 2020 / 5:29 pm

    I love that verse God is the same yesterday today and tomorrow, and sometimes we need to hold onto that when we fret!

  17. Teresa Hodge
    4 November 2020 / 8:02 pm

    These are great practical steps and questions to ask ourselves to avoid resentment and burnout. Loved this post. Much needed right now.
    Blessings!

  18. 4 November 2020 / 10:37 pm

    I never really considered the fact that burnout is related to resentment, but it makes a lot of sense. Thanks for these helpful tips in being proactive with stress before it becomes destructive.

  19. 4 November 2020 / 11:39 pm

    I love all these tips on how to avoid burn out, particularly the part about not trying to be perfect. I try to remind myself often.

  20. 5 November 2020 / 12:22 am

    Such a great article, Ava. So many of us deal with burnout at one time or another and these tips are so helpful for pulling out of it.

  21. Ava
    Author
    5 November 2020 / 7:38 am

    So glad, thanks Teresa!

  22. Ava
    Author
    5 November 2020 / 7:40 am

    This is true Carla and sadly none of us are exempt, thanks for reading!

  23. Ava
    Author
    5 November 2020 / 7:41 am

    Thanks Betty!

  24. Ava
    Author
    5 November 2020 / 7:41 am

    Recognising the signs are key to our wellbeing, thanks Pam!

  25. 5 November 2020 / 10:07 am

    I love this post, no doubt about it. It is filled with such beautiful tips. I get burnout also when I try to be overly perfect in one thing or the other, I am learning to adjust to not being perfect, it hasn’t been easy, but trust me, things are better than before

  26. 6 November 2020 / 3:27 am

    Burnout is definitely a real thing and often sneaks up on us if we aren’t careful. I love what you said about it being our choice to be miserable or motivate yourself! With the busy and uncertain year that we’ve been living in, I think burnout is more likely because we don’t always remember that we have that choice.

  27. Ava
    Author
    6 November 2020 / 8:07 pm

    Thanks for your feedback, be blessed today!

  28. Ava
    Author
    6 November 2020 / 8:07 pm

    I agree knowing our triggers is so important!

  29. 8 November 2020 / 7:25 pm

    Thank you for this article, Ava! I think it’s so important to address this issue – especially in a time when so many work from home and the lines between work and home are blurred at best.

  30. 10 November 2020 / 11:22 am

    These are indeed great tips, Ava. So helpful nowadays! Thank you so much for sharing all of these! God bless you!

  31. 10 November 2020 / 6:38 pm

    What a great reminder about avoiding burnout. I love the you pointed out that treating yourself with dignity and respect is NOT self-centered.

  32. Ava
    Author
    12 November 2020 / 8:52 am

    I totally agree, thanks for your comment!

  33. Ava
    Author
    12 November 2020 / 8:53 am

    Thanks for your feedback, much appreciated!

  34. Ava
    Author
    12 November 2020 / 8:53 am

    This is so true, thanks for your comment!

  35. Ava
    Author
    13 November 2020 / 3:35 pm

    We are all guilty of that, thanks for your feedback!

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