How to Overcome Burn Out and Recharge
A friend of mine recently told me that she was dreading her job. Big changes had occurred in the company which meant additional responsibilities and new challenges for this high potential leader.
Signs of Burn Out
Overwhelmed and stressed, she explained to me the unreasonable expectations imposed by the board of directors; there was no way she could complete all priorities necessary to achieve the organizational goals by year end. She described her dissatisfied work life as a game of survival. She was mentally and physically exhausted — literally burnout.
As someone who had experienced a similar situation, I asked her “what would happen if instead of trying to survive, you chose to really thrive? What do you need to overcome feeling burnout and get motivated again?”
Here are five ideas to help you overcome burnout and recharge this summer:
- Schedule and Take Long Weekends – feeling mentally and physically exhausted may be a sign that you need a vacation. Rather than scheduling a couple weeks off, plan for more frequent “getaways” and regularly take three or four day weekends. While you’re away, abstain from calling into work and checking work emails.
- Build Relationships and Connectivity – burnout often stems from a lack of understanding about what it takes to perform at your best during challenging times. Look for opportunities to build and strengthen professional and personal relationships with others. An invitation to meet for lunch is a great start to rekindle your network.
- Start Your Summer Reading – instead of wishing for an extended vacation on an island; be sure to include a restorative activity like reading into your schedule. Reading something of interest will engage your mind and give you more energy.
- Focus on Your Purpose – get back to focusing on why work matters to you. Connecting a project or daily task to a larger personal goal or your “why” will catapult you to overcome the mental, emotional and physical roadblocks from burnout.
- Disconnect from Devices – actively limit your use of digital devices after work hours. Consider turning off your smartphone or placing it in a drawer, so you’re not tempted to check email or mindlessly surf the web. “Whatever it is, can wait until tomorrow” — is a great mantra to help you disconnect.
Even if you love your job, it’s common to feel burn out from time to time. The secret is to find ways to refresh, recharge and reenergize, so that you can be a better leader in your work and life.
What works for you?