Burnout Is Out & About.

Uncategorized Jun 17, 2021

Burnout doesn’t social distance.

Take a moment now to not just open your eyes but to truly observe. Look around you. It's everywhere. Concealed behind forced smiles or revealed via downward cast eyes. There may be signs of tears. These tears may be yours even. They may belong to a family member or even a stranger you pass in slow-moving traffic. If you are an empath, you may even feel a noticeable shift in energy. It’s uncomfortable. It’s hard. It’s horrid.

I’m talking about burnout, and it's out, and about having a whale of a time – no social distancing here, it’ll get right up in your personal space and try to infect you. I saw a snippet on TV the other day that was rather silly but hit home nonetheless. It was an ad where a present-day character was having a conversation with his future self. I can’t recall it word for word, but the just of it went something like this:

"In your future, there will be no hugging, and there will be compulsory hand sanitizer wherever you go. You won't be allowed to visit anyone outside your household – not your family, not your friends, not your work colleagues. Instead, you will converse with them via ZOOM. It's like Skype, except it actually works. And you will be doing no travel whatsoever. Oh, and you will wear a mask when you leave your home. This will carry on for close to a year, maybe longer. Lockdown and social distancing…I'm not even going to begin to explain that. And did I mention everyone in the world will be doing this?”

 What really struck me is just how sci-fi this all sounded – what would I have thought if my future self had told me this? I don’t think I would have believed future-me for a second. And yet, it has been our extremely bizarre reality. Everyone’s reality – the whole wide world – how utterly bizarre when you step back from it for a moment and truly digest this phenomenon.

Isolation, working from home, lost income, bumping elbows. This stress, this oddness, this feeling of anxiety and uncertainty is the breeding ground for potential burnout. Pre-COVID, burnout was mainly assigned to work stress; however, it's become more complex than that. While burnout develops due to stress, it is generally more long-term than ‘stress’ as we know it.

Burnout is having a pandemic field day – it can infiltrate all these new challenges and stresses our lives have (unwillingly) had to take on. So if you are feeling burnt out, please know that you are not alone. While we were (or are – depending on where you hail) isolating, burnout has become quite the socialite at this worldwide life event.

BUT. It is what it is. It doesn’t mean we have to give into it. So, let’s take it on. Get over here, burnout – we want to look you in the eye and take YOU down!

First – figure out where you are, so you know where you need to be.

Recognise the signs of burnout. In yourself and in others.




Unexplained, sustained fatigue

Cynical outlook

Poor concentration

Reduced creative ability

Anger management issues


Gastrointestinal disorders

Muscle tension

Ineffectiveness with work


Loss of joy with things that usually feel good

And so much more. It is very personal and covers a wide range …

Some suggestions on how to manage and even prevent burnout.

  1. Find balance – this pertains to eating, drinking, socialising, work, and so forth. The Wellculator assessment (available on my website) is a good place to start with a balance of some fundamentals. Balance requires boundaries.

2. Recognise your potential breaking point and be fiercely protective of your boundaries to prevent that tipping point – this includes managing your hours when working from home. Shut down when it’s ‘home’ time, and then ignore your desk and phone. No is a full sentence. What or who do you need to let go, surrender or say NO to?


  1. Become a joyspotter. Find joy – do what makes you happy. Choose to replace 'cynical' with 'curious.' Watch TED talk “Where Joy Hides” by Ingrid Fetell Lee as a start. Yes. Stop and smell the flowers – there, I said it!


  1. Take a power nap. Or just stop. Sometimes the most productive thing you can do is to do nothing. If you find it hard to stop, perhaps try practicing grounding or a suitable meditation such as mindful walking. I have been using The Healing Hub app regularly for breath work, primal releasing and hypnomeditations.


  1. Exercise – both cardio, strength, and yoga. Motion can help to shift emotion. What you suppress, the body will express. Let your body express emotions by moving it in a way that feels good. Try walking in nature, dance, stretching or playing around in soft grass. Get those feel good endorphins going!


  1. Do something charitable – not only is it a good thing to do, but it will also get you out of your head and add perspective. Cultivate more gratitude practices may also be useful. 


  1. Not sure where to start or tired of struggling? Reach out to podcasts and books and immerse yourself in resources that inspire you. And most importantly, don’t do this alone. Speak to someone you trust. Reach out to me.

Some of my current inspirational authors and podcasters:

  • Francis Briers
  • David Whyte
  • Dr Joe Dispenza
  • Brene Brown
  • Martha Beck
  • David Newall
  • Robert Spira

What are yours?

And … as simple and hard as it sounds, laugh! If you don’t have it in you to laugh, then force a gentle smile. You’ll be amazed at just how effective this simple practice is. Smile right now – come on…I know you wanna. 


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