Life can get crazy. Burnout is not something to push aside, just because we’ve glorified the hustle mentality or normalized the notion of the college student who stays up till 4 am to study. Today I’m sharing the ways I’ve learned to combat and avoid burnout.
So What is Burnout?
Simply put, burnout is when you’re utterly and completely drained. It is a physical and mental exhaustion that typically is the result of being over-worked within a high-stress environment. However, this doesn’t mean that it’s reserved for the CEO’s of Fortune 500 companies. It can affect anyone from college students to start up employees.
How I Avoid Burnout
Identify The Drainer and Delete It
This was a hard one for me. I am absolutely a people pleaser. It’s a trait I’m currently working on. I always feel the need to work hard to make sure everyone around me is happy, even if that means pushing myself to the side and overloading my plate.
Take last fall for example, I was feeling extremely burnt out. I was applying to internships, working, going to school full time, leading a campus organization, trying to plan content for the blog, and somehow trying to find time to have a social life. I realized I needed to take some time off and remove one of the things draining me. So, I decided to take a break from the blog. It was hard, but after a few months I felt refreshed, inspired, and ready to take on creating content again.
A social media detox is beneficial in it’s own right, but cutting down on the online distractions that leave you feeling overwhelmed is key. We need a break from all the noise on the internet and a social media detox is a great way to log off and let go. If you can’t completely stay off social media, try to cut down on the time you are on it or unfollow accounts that make you feel worse. You’ll be better off in the end!
Find Your Escape
Whether it’s a book, podcast, movie, or an actual location, having a place to escape to does wonders for giving your brain a breather. I have a couple escapes to help me when I’m feeling overwhelmed.
One is an actual location; a quiet area by the lake that not many tourists go to. It’s perfect for when I need to burn off some stress with a run or just sit by the water and chill out for a bit.
Another is for when I’m on the go. When I’m in driving to school or work, my mind seems to run all over the place. Do I have any interviews to prep for this week? What exams are coming up? Did I email the coordinator back for the event I agreed to volunteer at? You get the idea. Recently, I’ve been listening to Dax Shepard’s Armchair Expert podcast. I love listening to music in the car, but I feel more engaged when actively listening to a podcast. This is one of my favorites, because Dax interviews a mix of people from celebrities to his own mother about different struggles everyone faces. It’s self-described as “celebrating the messiness of being human.” Perfect for leaning back and listening in.