Work, family, errands, chores, and countless commitments – balancing our everyday lives can be a lofty challenge. This time of year, as children return to school and the world leaves the lazy days of summer behind, it can be particularly hard not to crash and burn. Burnout is officially defined as bodily or mental collapse caused by overwork or stress. With so many responsibilities pulling us in different directions, how can we meet our personal responsibilities, climb the career ladder, and assure our emotional and physical wellbeing? Here are some tips for combating burnout before it spirals out of control:
Eat breakfast. You need more than coffee to optimally fuel your morning. Breakfast doesn’t have to be complicated, but have a little whole grain (oatmeal or toast), some produce (fruit), and a small serving of protein to start your day right.
Get outside and exercise. If you’re cooped up in an office building during most daylight hours, this tip’s especially relevant to you. Getting up 20 minutes early to stretch your legs and breathe in fresh air will change your outlook for the rest of the day.
Take a lunch break. Scarfing down vending machine fare at your desk while catching up on email is not a lunch break – it’s a sentence. Pack a lunch and sit outside, or duck into your favorite deli for a salad. Whatever you do, make it screen free. Whether it’s solitary or social is personal preference, depending on your needs at the time.
Limit screens and phones after hours. There was a time in the not-so-distant past that leaving work meant just that. Now, our professional lives infiltrate our homes through our smart phones and laptops. Previous generations got along just fine by dealing with business sans the Internet 24/7, and you can too. Set a time to shut down email and phone communications and stick to it.
Pamper yourself weekly. When was the last time you did something just for yourself? Paint your nails, give yourself a facial treatment, get a massage, or meet an old friend for lunch. It will do you a world of good.
Most strategies for preventing burnout come down to taking care of your personal needs. A small time investment in taking care of you will reap great health and wellness rewards long term!
Resources:burn out, prevention, take a break