Overcoming and treating burnout isn’t like getting over a cold. In other words, it won’t just go away even if you do nothing.
Here are some of the ways burnout can be tackled:
- Establish a helpful baseline for activities
- Rebuild strength and stamina
- Learn how to do more with less effort
- Understand how the different systems in the body work
- Develop a balanced approach between physical, psychological and social needs
- Take time out regularly to recharge your brain e.g. switch off the devices that are keeping you constantly connected
- Do things you enjoy once more
- Find new enjoyment
- Set boundaries
- Be open with how you’re feeling to friends, family and work colleagues
- Reach out for support
- Re-evaluate your priorities
- Develop positive and beneficial social connections
- Limit contact with negative and toxic people
If you decide to start your journey to recovery with us, we will work together on six key areas of your health – symptoms, sleep, mood, nutrition, activity and relationships – to help you achieve an improved state of physical, mental and social wellbeing.
Feeling alone and confused about what you’re experiencing? There’s a chance we can help.
We regularly work with people who are in the same position as you, many of who are now on their way to recovery.
Here at the Helpful Clinic, we use a variety of interventions and techniques to help our clients get back on the path to recovery. Find out more about our methods now.
Book your free Discovery Call with us now and find out how we just might be able to help you begin a journey towards better emotional and physical health.
What is burnout?
Traditionally, burnout, or chronic stress, was associated with helping professions i.e. professions where individuals sacrifice themselves for other people e.g. doctors, nurses, etc. People in these professions would frequently work long hours and experience high levels of stress, leading to them becoming listless, exhausted (physically and mentally) and unable to cope – literally “burned out”.
However, nowadays, burnout is a condition that can affect anyone, from high-flying career-focussed individuals and celebrities to employees and homemakers. Burnout is becoming more common as our lives become busier, more stressful and more demanding.
Now it’s important to note that burnout isn’t something that people just wake up with one morning. It’s a culmination of many different factors that have crept up on a person over a period of time. This is why burnout is often difficult to spot until it’s actually happened.
While our bodies have developed a fight or flight response for dealing with short-term stress, long-term, constant stress over a prolonged period is a lot more difficult for us to cope with and that’s when burnout ultimately occurs.
Burnout is frequently defined as three primary feelings: exhaustion, cynicism and inefficacy – an overwhelming feeling of being incapable of accomplishing anything. It is a state of total physical, mental and emotional exhaustion, characterised by many of the following symptoms:
- Chronic fatigue (extreme tiredness)
- Impaired concentration, forgetfulness and attention problems
- Physical symptoms such as heart palpitations, chest pain, gastrointestinal pain, dizziness, fainting, headaches and being short of breath
- More prone to illnesses (coughs, colds, infections and other immune-related conditions)
- Loss of appetite
- Loss of motivation
- Feeling constantly anxious or worried
- Anger issues for no apparent reason
- Extra sensitive to small issues
- Feeling useless or incapable (increased self-doubt)
- Different eating habits (eating more or less than usual)
- Increasingly negative and cynical
- Self-isolation from others
- Increased procrastination
Causes of burnout
While burnout tends to occur as a result of stresses at work and is often closely associated with someone’s job, it can, nevertheless, impact anyone who feels overworked and undervalued.
Potential causes of burnout include:
- Heavy workloads
- Lack of recognition
- Monotonous or unchallenging work
- A chaotic or high-pressure environment
- Neglecting socialising and relaxing
- Lack of close, personal relationships
- Taking on more than you can handle
- Not getting enough quality sleep
- Being constantly connected i.e. always reachable regardless of the time
- Unfair working environments
- Being unable to switch off
- Genetics (prone to feeling highly stressed and depressed)