23 April 2021

How to overcome stress and burnout

Family and work obligations, personal goals, financial woes; it can seem never-ending. So it’s no wonder that many people feel burned out and stressed especially in the age of the internet.

Dealing with an episode of stress and burnout can leave you feeling like you have nothing left to give and can put immense pressure on your health, work, and relationships. 

The good news is that there are simple ways to effectively manage your stress levels so that they never get to a point where you find yourself crippled by it.

Sure, there’s no possible way to avoid stress entirely. But there are ways of learning to identify stress triggers, manage stress levels and cope with the stress and anxiety you simply can’t avoid.

What is burnout?

Coined by the psychologist, Herbert Freudenberger in the 1970s, burnout is a state of mental, emotional and physical exhaustion which can be triggered by continual exposure to stressful situations, like caring for an ill family member, working long hours, or witnessing upsetting news.

The signs of burnout include:

Feeling physically and emotionally exhausted, headaches, stomach aches, and appetite or sleeping changes. Feeling overwhelmed which can lead to social isolation. Dissatisfaction with the never-ending demands of your job or situation and fantasizing about running away or going on a solo-vacation.

Irritability and suffering from frequent illnesses from lower immune system. More susceptibility to colds, the flu, and insomnia. Mental health concerns like depression and anxiety and even in extreme cases turning to drugs, alcohol, or food as a way to numb emotional pain.

How to recover from burnout and stress

Below we’ll look at just some of the many ways you can improve the quality of your life by learning how to properly manage your stress levels. Best of all, every method mentioned is based on 100% natural remedies and solutions.

#1 Get Active

It takes 15 to 30-minutes a day, 3-4 days of the week, to see an increase in your overall mood and stress levels. There are simple ways to incorporate exercise into your existing lifestyle, such as waking up a little early to go for a brisk walk, going for a jog on your lunch break or taking the stairs if you live or work in a high-rise building.

Every time we exercise, our body naturally releases powerful endorphins. These endorphins are hormones that travel throughout our body, giving us a boost of energy, and actively eliminating our body of stress, anxiety and toxins.

#2 Limit Distractions & Noise

The onset of the internet and smartphone has been great for staying connected and doing business, but the drawback is people now have access to you at an instant. If you work online, you may be bombarded with WhatsApp messages, emails, phone calls, social media notifications from customers and the list goes on. Not to mention the messages you get from friends and family on the daily. All of which are making you feel like you need to do 100 things at once making you feel even more overwhelmed and adding to your stress.

And it’s not your fault.

It’s important to learn to cut out the noise, disconnect and recharge your mental and emotional batteries. Tips to help you reduce noise related stress include disconnecting from your phone and internet at least one hour before bed to help you unwind and fall asleep easier, read a book to unwind, create a schedule for your day where by you can set the time you spend on your phone responding to messages, this will help you limit distractions and, lastly consider muting messages so you don’t get distractions throughout the day.

#3 Get enough sleep

When you don’t rest enough at the end of your day, your body can tense up and it leads to irritability and depression.  And when you’re irritable or depressed, you’re stressed.

#4 Schedule Me Time
Not only will this help you manage stress levels by giving yourself a mental “time out”, but ultimately, the downtime will boost creativity levels and help you manage your affairs more efficiently!

Focus on your own personal down-time every day, gives you time away from the chaos of life. Creating a schedule and sticking to it will ensure you’re always performing at your very best and avoiding burnout.

#5 Meditate

Meditation can be one of the best ways to reduce your stress levels. Most if not all cultures, religions and ethnicities have used and continue to use meditation to achieve peace, calm and tranquility. This is because meditation provides a method of training your mind to focus and redirect your thoughts.

Meditation is an effective way to reduce your stress and develop concentration. It also gives you time to reflect, focus on your breathing. It may also help you develop a stronger understanding of yourself and others around you by helping you to grow into your authentic self. 

Finally, be aware that burnout doesn’t go away on its own and, if left untreated, it can lead to serious physical and psychological illnesses like depression, heart disease, and diabetes.

So, it’s important that you proactively try to implement ways to deal with your stresses and burdens to help you avoid more serious health issues down the line.

Resources

https://www.healthline.com/health/tips-for-identifying-and-preventing-burnout#signs

https://wellnessmama.com/5479/reduce-stress/