While there is no one-size-fits-all solution, here are some strategies that will help you tackle burnout in 2023.
It’s 2023, and we all feel the pressure of an ever-changing world. We are working longer hours, juggling multiple responsibilities and trying to be our best. With so much on our plates, how do we handle the stress and prevent burnout?
Burnout is when you are physically, mentally and emotionally drained. It can be caused by constant stress, which can negatively impact your work performance and personal life. Physical symptoms of burnout include extreme tiredness, depression, low immunity and a lack of motivation. If you’re experiencing any of these symptoms, taking a step back and assessing your situation is important. Are you working too hard? Are you taking on too much? Is your work-life balance out of whack?
Don’t worry, there are things you can do to avoid or manage burnout. In this article, we will discuss three actionable tips to help you build a strong foundation at the start of the year so that you don’t easily fall into the trap of burnout.
Check out mindfulness apps
Mindfulness apps are becoming increasingly popular as people look for ways to de-stress and relax. Practicing mindfulness involves paying attention to what’s happening inside your body and around you. Mindfulness-based interventions have been proven to have small-to-moderate treatment effects on anxiety and depression by offering guided meditations for 10 to 20 minutes daily. Additionally, they can help users become more aware of their thoughts and feelings, leading to better self-care practices.
Some of the popular apps that provide guided meditations or relaxation and breathing techniques to help you stay calm and relaxed are Headspace, Calm and Buddhify. Headspace offers a variety of guided meditations for different issues, such as stress, anxiety and sleep. It also has a free “Take 10” program that can help get started with meditation sessions in just ten minutes per day.
Calm offers a range of meditations for different lengths of time and provides relaxing music and nature sounds to help users relax.
Buddhify focuses on mindfulness in everyday life, providing audio exercises to help users become more conscious of their body and mind while doing mundane tasks, such as commuting or waiting in line.
Emotional freedom technique (EFT)/ acupressure tapping
If you’re feeling burnt out, give the emotional freedom technique (EFT) a try. It’s simple to do, and you can do it anywhere. Developed by Gary Craig in 1995, EFT is an alternative therapy that combines cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) with tapping specific acupressure points on the body.
Various studies suggest that EFT may reduce cortisol levels (stress hormone) by 43 percent and positively impact your blood pressure and immune system. As EFT does not require tools or prior knowledge, it can be learned in a few simple steps and can be used effectively to relieve stress. Here’s how the sequence works:
- Begin by stating what is on your mind and rating your stress level on a scale of 0 to 10 (with 10 being the most stressful).
- Create your “setup statement”, which identifies the issue and includes a statement of acceptance.
- Begin tapping on the specified sites (see next paragraph) five to seven times using your fingers and repeat your setup statement to keep your attention on your problem area.
- At the end of the sequence, rate your distress level again.
- Repeat the process until your distress rating lowers.
Here are the pressure points you can tap during an EFT tapping sequence: the heel of the hand, three points around the eye, the area below the nose, the area below the lips, the collarbone, the underarm and the top of the head. You can find more information and resources online or from a certified EFT practitioner.
Restore your tired brain by surrounding yourself with nature
When our brains are tired, we have trouble paying attention. We might space out or make mistakes. To restore our tired brains, attention restoration theory (ART) suggests that we spend time in nature. Developed by psychology professors and researchers Stephen and Rachel Kaplan in the 1980s, ART highlights the role of nature in attention restoration.
According to the theory, humans may concentrate better after experiencing nature. Because our modern urban environments are so busy, we are always paying attention to something in particular, be it our constant message notifications on our phones, billboards on the street or traffic noise. Hence, we are easily prone to directed attention fatigue. However, when you are in nature, you don’t have to actively direct the same level of attention to the environment. So, our brains can rest, replenishing our cognitive capacity and brightening our mood.
So if you’re finding it hard to focus, step away from your work and go outside. Visit the botanical gardens, go hiking or have a picnic in the forest. Let the sounds and sights of nature help restore your tired brain.
Burnout is a serious issue that can have long-term effects on your mental and physical health. Taking proactive steps to prevent burnout in 2023 is essential for maintaining a healthy lifestyle. By setting realistic goals, taking regular breaks, engaging in self-care activities and seeking help when needed, you can reduce the risk of burnout and stay productive throughout the year.
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