Strategies for Overcoming Burnout - Part 2 of 4

mental health personal growth professional development Sep 09, 2014

In my last blog I described some ways to determine if you may be experiencing burnout from your work and stresses. If you’re already struggling it can be difficult to muster up the energy to constructively address the problem when you are exhausted, but things are not likely to change if you don’t.  As overwhelming as it may feel right now, there are strategies you can use to improve your situation and regain control of your life.

Today we will look at Strategy #1: Refocus.

Confront the Issue – Remember the saying, “If you always do what you have always done you will always get what you have always got.”  Making an intentional choice to interrupt the pattern of your life is the first step toward getting back into balance.  This will require setting some time aside to think and plan.  For most of us, the only “spare” time we have is whenever we usually watch television, so setting your favorite shows to record could be your first move toward freedom.

Make a Mindset Shift – Burnout is often the byproduct of self-defeating beliefs.  Something has to be fueling the vicious cycle of behavior that has caused you to feel the way you do and the enemy is often in your own head.  Some common self-defeating thoughts sound very noble on the surface, but they’re really brutal taskmasters.  Do you recognize any of these? “If I just work more hours and push myself I will succeed.” “What I do must be perfect in order to be good enough.” “I deserve to be given a promotion – just look how hard I work.” “I’ll take a break when I accomplish or achieve (fill in the blank)” “I can’t quit what I’m doing – it would be a sign of weakness.” The list of self-destructive beliefs goes on and on.  Give yourself a break and invest time into giving yourself a reality check.  Ask your family or friends who know you well if they agree with the beliefs that are driving you so hard. You may want to enlist the help of an executive coach or even a counselor to help give you a realistic perspective.

Manage your work – Those who suffer from burnout are often engaged in a pattern of over-commitment, an inability to say, “no”, an unwillingness to delegate, perfectionism, an inability to prioritize tasks (focusing on the urgent instead of what’s important), poor time management and tackling projects without adequate resources.  Effectively addressing work management problems can bring about significant emotional relief.  Some resources that can help you address this are 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen Covey and Developing Management Skills: What Great Managers Know and Do by Timothy Baldwin.

I hope this information is already giving you some encouragement as you try to get a handle on the stressors that are burning you out.

Next time we will discuss Strategy #2.

Live, Work and Relate Well!


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