A little aloe for that burn

burnout3Headaches, irritation, memory problems, hysterics, anxiety, feeling drained and indecision – what’s the common factor?  They’re all signs you’re heading towards a burnout.

It’s easy to get burnt-out working, online or in the ‘real world,’ where so many of the tasks we do seem endlessly repetitive. Feeling stressed out or overwhelmed is hardly uncommon! Even a job that you love can wear on your nerves.

Luckily, there are some very simple things that can keep us from yanking out our hair out, and help us in avoiding (or managing) the oncoming burn.

Get out of the house! If you’re a online worker, close the laptop, step away from the desktop and get out and play! Completely unplug. Go for a walk, throw the ball for the dog, gossip with a friend, do anything away from your computer. You need downtime to hit your internal reset button. (P.S. Checking email on your phone is cheating!)

Caffeine junkie? Cut back. Yes, I’m completely serious. My husband and I switched to decaf and half-caf and we’re both sleeping better than we have in years. The caffeine that was meant to wake us up was actually keeping us up. After making the switch, we no longer felt tired upon waking up in the morning, and became more productive during the day – which leads to a shorter to-do list and less anxiety about everything getting completed. We have less stress and basically have a happier day. So just say no to that fifth or sixth cup of coffee, or give yourself a last call time.

Think happy thoughts! Negativity is a productivity killer. Sometimes its as simple as stepping back and altering your perspective.  Look for the good, the opportunity, the highlights, and rely on your passions, then use those things to amend your outlook.  When you adapt the perspective that your work and your projects will turn out wonderfully, the job seems to lighten, and the work gets done which equates to less anxiety for you!  Sometimes things are a lot more simple then we work our selves up to believe.

workplace-burnout-triangleSet boundaries. The much sought after “work/life balance” is indeed achievable, you just have to stick to your guns. Turn off the phone during dinner time, and do not check your emails while watching a movie with the family. Learn it’s ok to say no sometimes when life tries to hand you more than you can handle.

The absolute best way to help avoid burn out – ask for help! You may be super(wo)man, but even the biggest overachiever still needs a hand once in a while.  So take it easy on yourself. While a go-getter attitude will definitely get you far in life, overloading yourself will do the opposite.

Crystal Litzau
Project Manager

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