Burnout literally means ‘burnt out’. The energy is gone. The fire is out. Where you once had a lot of energy, or at least enough to fulfill your tasks without getting exhausted, a line has now been crossed. The reserves are gone. The battery is empty.
Burnout is about energy
What we do costs energy or it gives energy. If, after things that cost energy, we also do things that give us energy, the battery recharges. To prevent or recover from a burnout, one of the most important aspects to pay attention to is your energy management.
Burnout is about responsibility and boundaries
Who gets a burnout ? Usually the person who is helpful, who has a heart for the cause and who wants to deliver quality. Do you recognize that you often have trouble setting your boundaries and that you don’t easily say ‘no’? Do extra (care) tasks often end up with you? Then the balance between giving and receiving energy can be disturbed. Do you recognize that?
Are you highly sensitive, do you notice that you quickly become overstimulated ? Are you often tired? Do you lose energy to situations, such as conflicts or long meetings, or to (groups of) people? It is important to learn to stay true to yourself. With your own feeling and inner knowing whether you want something and whether it is good for you.
Restore the energy balance
It is important to examine and restore your energy balance. I myself had a burnout in 2002, I experienced what it is like to go beyond your limits and I also know how to recover. And I have learned how to prevent you from falling out again after a while with burnout complaints.
I’ll give you three tips that have helped me. I am highly sensitive myself and after years of searching and trying out I know exactly what works and what doesn’t. Hopefully these tips will help you too.
My 3 golden tips for burnout prevention
Tip 1: Make your personal energy balance
This exercise will give you insight and help you make healthier choices. Make two columns, in one column write down everything that costs you energy, in the next column you put the things that give you energy.
Look at the result. What does it tell you? Are you doing enough things that give you energy? Can you cut out energy guzzlers?
Tip 2: Regularly stand still and feel in your body
Too often we go on. We don’t pay attention to the signals our body gives. We need this, we need that. Until it doesn’t work anymore.
To prevent a (new) burnout, you have to learn to feel how situations affect your energy level. Look back on the day every night. What happened, how did you feel? What did it do to your energy?
Tip 3: Learn to listen to your feelings and intuition
Breathe in slowly, and breathe out slowly. Focus your attention on the stillness within. Become aware of your inner space. Here you can be. Here you know things. Learn to trust it.
It is important to dwell on your feelings and look for your inner space, do it daily! You can also do it when you are on the train or in the waiting room or when you are standing in line.
If you feel first and then continue with your actions, what you are doing has a new aura. Another energy. Try it out!