You have a short fuse when you're stuck in a state of perpetual exhaustion. When you're stressed and overwhelmed for long periods of time, your energy levels evaporate along with your patience, and your passion for activities you once enjoyed dwindles. The truth is--everyone has a battle with mental, physical, and emotional burnout.
Most people allow themselves to stay in this negative state for far too long. They prolong their suffering by failing to execute a comprehensive plan to alleviate stress and facilitate healing. When they aren't stuck in a state of burnout, they're often practicing habits that create the perfect environment for stress to become more impactful.
Don't be one of those people who haven't figured out how to turn things around--master your ability to hit the reset button and attack each day with a renewed sense of vitality.
It's not easy to move from burnout back into health, and it doesn't happen overnight. However, if you follow these eight steps, you'll recover quicker and develop practices you need to live life with a high intensity for longer periods of time.
Here are eight steps to get out of exhaustion and start sustaining success:
1. Stop everything you're doing right now--get organized and create a plan.
That's right, if you're serious about getting out of this mess then you need to start by hitting the pause button and strategizing your next move.
You need to take this seriously and stop wasting precious hours performing at diminished levels of productivity. You're capable of a more fulfilling life and it's time to hold yourself to a higher standard of wellbeing.
2. Delegate as many tasks as you can to others over the next four weeks.
You're only capable of higher levels of productivity when you're in optimal health. Right now, although it feels daunting to pull back, without doing so you're being negligent to yourself and others.
This is not the time to take on more projects than usual, nor is it the time to continue working under normal conditions--this is the time to cut back as much as feasibly possible. It's only by calling a time out that you can re-group, re-strategize, and improve your performance.
3. Decide which tasks and to-dos can wait until next month.
You have a tendency to do more than what's expected. Now's a great time to challenge your perfectionist tendencies and start delaying projects that you'd like to get started immediately.
Instead of re-vamping your website or re-modeling the bathroom, it's time to put these tasks on the back burner. Trust yourself. Believe that all of these projects will get done in due time.
4. Reach out to people for help, support, and encouragement.
Peers, coworkers, friends, and family members are all great people to ask for help and support. Check if they can help assume some of the roles and responsibilities you're usually overseeing.
Also take this opportunity to consult with professionals, like psychologists, who can help you strengthen your foundation of resilience.
5. Treat yourself--mind, body, and spirit.
That's right! It's time for you to treat your body to a massage and chiropractic adjustment.
Go to the spa, re-establish your exercise routine, go on a hike, do whatever you can to get your mind, body, and spirit aligned and working together. Engage in tasks that give you energy rather than doing things that take it away.
6. Set more appropriate boundaries and practice saying no.
This step may be the most important of all because it not only helps immediately, but is a life-long practice that will improve all aspects of your life. As an ambitious individual, one of the most important skills you can learn is saying no.
Setting appropriate boundaries isn't selfish, it's prioritizing your needs so that you can be the best version of yourself for those around you.
7. Confront any feelings of guilt--it's time to be selfish.
Yep--of all times in your life, now is a morally acceptable time to focus on yourself. Because you didn't catch it early, you're now forced to play catch up, which means that you need to go the extra mile here and take care of yourself prior to others.
Don't allow your inner critic to punish you for doing something vital to your wellbeing.
8. Slowly re-introduce tasks while maintaining self-care practices.
Many of the activities that have been giving you energy need to stay. They may not need to be present to the full extent of your recovery period, but integrating them into your life is a great way to find balance.
As you start assuming your normal roles and responsibilities, remember what you've learned and continue practicing the habits that will keep you out of burnout, exhaustion, and stress.
You're bound to fail, but it's a battle worth fighting.