Have you been constantly tired? Uninspired? Snippy with your spouse, friends, and co-workers? Experiencing insomnia, muscle aches, heart palpitations, a loss of appetite, or more bouts of the common cold or flu? Many of us have been there, in that particular hell, where we’ve absolutely reached our limits. You’re burned out and you really want to get out of that situation.
We here you and so we’ve listed some things you could try to get yourself back on track.
1. Get Your Rest
Please don’t feel guilty about being lazy. Your burnout didn’t just happen; it is a result of your choices. Of course, exercise releases mood-elevating endorphins and boosts our physical health. But without adequate sleep, you are toast. So, when you feel exhausted, rest.
You can’t tell your boss or a crying toddler that you’re too busy soaking or sleeping to do your job as an employee or a parent. Instead of drinking more coffee , tea, or whatever it is that keeps you going, how about getting some rest? Have a nice, relaxing bath or go to bed—without your cellphone.
2. Lower the Bar
Someone said it first, but I’ve said it 1,000 times: Expectations are the death of people. You know what else someone said? Less is more. Work smart, not hard. Give an inch, they’ll take a mile.
These are all true, yet, it’s too easy to bite off more than we can chew. You work overtime to impress and get ahead. You find it impossible to say “no” to a lover who wants attention. Your foot will not come down on that friend in a never-ending crisis.
You go the extra mile because you can — until you can’t. Shore up your boundaries, and find a way to let folks know that you are not setting a precedent when you give more of yourself than they expected.
3. Distract Yourself
I told you to go to bed, but if you’re just going to lie there and do the fret-and-spin, you might as well catch up on this season of “This Is Us.” After a near-death experience and an extended hospital stay, a friend asked how my progress was going. I replied that I was too busy processing the Pearsons’ drama. Who cares that I almost died? Spoiler alert: Rebecca has Alzheimer’s!
4. Reach Out
Use your words. Tell someone—your partner, a friend, a spiritual advisor, or a therapist—that you are struggling. You may be independent. You may not wish to be a burden. You may, in fact, be able to survive on your own, but we all need other people to thrive. There is no way around this one.
5. Take a Timeout
Whether you go on an actual vacation or simply refuse to leave your home for a week and call it a sabbatical, take a break. Physically remove yourself from any sources of stress that have led you to the state of burnout. Even a leave of absence from Twitter can save a soul in crisis. Not everyone can afford a literal timeout from a job, but if you can, please take one. It may be that simple.
Get rid of those energy vampires. You may feel bad about seeing less of that needy friend, but save yourself.
Some people, whether emotional wrecks, power-tripping bosses and co-workers, or narcissistic lovers, will not quit even after you are drained to empty. It may be enough to assert stronger boundaries, but you can also replace that insatiable person with someone who makes you laugh or an outright healer.
7. Be Selfish
This may not sound right. Many of us are taught to give to others as much as we can. Our teachers often fail to mention that we should give equally to ourselves. No offense, but your burnout has left you useless. Do the world a favor. Put yourself—your physical and mental health and general well-being—first, lest you end up too weak to be there for anyone else.
The source of your burnout may be your job, your marriage, or toxic associations. While it may feel like a tower that’s impossible to climb, remember that you can recover. Choose a different path; get a divorce. Make better friends. Do what is necessary to take care of yourself and shine on.