How to Overcome Burnout

Burnout is a real thing, people.

In this day and age, its super easy to burn out. This is because we live most of our lives on auto-pilot. Every day is the same; we go to the same jobs and spend all our free time looking at our phones. The next day we rinse and repeat, without spending the time it takes to ask whether we are promoting self-care. If we do this long enough, we eventually burn out and can’t handle it anymore.

This is where the breakdown happens. Maybe we retreat into a depression, snap at a stranger, or just bury our sorrows in a quart of ice cream and ugly cry at the TV. Regardless of how it manifests, burnout is an unhealthy thing.

Here are a few ways to overcome it.

Make a list. Burnout often happens because we take on too much. If you make a list of all the things you absolutely must do, checking them off one by one can become a fun game, that helps you recognize when you have done enough.

Prioritize self care. Sometimes you find yourself at a crossroads. You can either be more productive and keep working needlessly, or take a break and step away. Only you can decide what is right, but if you have accomplished your goals, and have a little free time, take it! Make the time to meditate, or relax, or even go for a walk. Self care is the biggest way you can overcome burnout, because if you are taking care of your mental health as you go along, you will never burn out.

Work out. Working out is a natural remedy for burnout, because you are changing up the game. When working, you are probably very in your head, in problem solving mode. Working out reconnects the body and the mind, and can drastically improve your mood, and ability to handle tasks.

READ MORE: What to Do in the Athletic Off Season

Inventory your surroundings. Are you surrounded with people who are needlessly competitive, who always push you farther than your limits? Ditch them. When it comes to burnout, you should set your own goals, and only hold yourself accountable, to yourself. If the people around you don’t make your feel good about yourself or support your mental health, they aren’t worth it.

Eat the right foods. Your diet has a huge part to play in terms of your mental health and ability to handle life’s little problems. Make sure you are getting all the nutrients your body needs, such as clean protein, fruit, healthy fats, and leafy vegetables.

The hardest aspect of burnout is learning to recognize when you are headed towards it. The best way to do that is to pay special attention to your behavior.

Are you spending way too much time on your phone? Does your to-do list play in a constant loop in your head? If so, you may be on the road to burnout. I urge you to turn around now and go outside for a long, text-free walk.

Published by karenmsutton

HSS Orthopaedic surgeon in sports medicine | Mother of 4 amazing children | Team physician for USA Women's Lacrosse | ACL injury expert

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