4 Simple Ways to Avoid Burnout
Why do Millenials and Gen Z constantly feel the need to be doing something productive? Why do we find it so hard to switch off, or end the day without completing our never ending to-do list? Do you feel pressure to utilise every minute of every day, to be productive, to say yes to everything? If so, you’re not alone. According to Forbes, this is something 59% of Millennials and 58% of Gen- Z are experiencing today, with rates on the rise since the pandemic. It’s called ‘burnout’.
Burnout is ‘a state of emotional, physical, and mental exhaustion, caused by excessive and prolonged stress’. It occurs when you feel overwhelmed, emotionally drained, and unable to meet constant demands.
But productivity is so subjective. What does a productive day mean to you? Is it completing tasks at work? Eating well? Spending time with the people you love? Or even getting out of bed in the morning and having a shower? We can’t expect ourselves to have a productive day every day. It’s about taking care of our minds and bodies, and the constant little wins that add up to the big stuff.
We’ve put together 4 simple things you can do to prevent burning out, which in turn can improve your mental and physical health.
1. Daily ‘downtime’
Scheduling free time into your calendar is essential. By prioritising ‘me’ time, you’re practicing self-care and self-love. This may mean putting your own needs before those of others, but by prioritising yourself and attending to your own needs, you’ll be able to reflect on what’s important to you. Self-care looks different to everyone; it could be running a bubble bath and putting on a face mask, baking a cake, journaling, or even meditating. Remember, it’s okay to cancel a dinner with a friend if you need to take the evening off for yourself. It’s all about prioritising what YOU need.
2. Diet & Sleep
Eating a balanced and healthy diet means our bodies are fueled with all the right nutrients to function. Balance is key though, listen to your body and give it what it needs. Chocolate can be self-care too…sometimes…
Good sleeping habits are essential for our mental well-being too. Not getting enough sleep is one of the main risk factors leading to burnout.
Exercising for as little as 30 minutes a day is scientifically proven to boost your mood. Whether cycling to work instead of hopping on the tube, taking a short lunchtime walk when WFH, or joining the gym, incorporating exercise into your day is an effective way to get those endorphins going.
4. Spending time with people you care about
Dedicating time to spending with friends and family is so important to keep yourself on track. Having a support system reminds you you’re not alone and helps you open up about any struggles or worries. Checking in on each other is crucial - take care of yourself and the ones you love too. Same goes professionally, which will help you feel supported in your work-life.
Even if you follow just one of these tips, your risk of feeling burnt out will significantly decrease. So, whatever a productive day looks like for you, feel proud of yourself for achieving it! It always helps to reward yourself too… it could be as simple as a glass of wine after a long day or starting your day with a flat white and a croissant from your favourite coffee shop. It’s all about the little things!