Burnout is a state of emotional, physical, and mental exhaustion caused by excessive and prolonged stress.
It can affect anyone. Here are some resources and expert advice for how to deal with burnout and take care of your mental health.
Lenovo Health Coach Katie Maloney
In a recent internal email to staff, Lenovo Health Coach, Katie Maloney notes that one of the most important aspects of burnout is understanding your personal signs and symptoms – irritation, increased heart rate, etc. She recommends doing a head-to-toe scan frequently to recognize these signs in the mind and body.
Should you recognize these symptoms appearing frequently, Maloney has provided a few practices that may change your energy from anxious to calm. “A few really good, cognizant deep breaths lower heart rate and blood pressure during times you may be stressed,” she notes.
“Five by five is also a good practice. For five minutes five times a day, stand up from where you’re working and walk away. Go outside and get some air. In colder areas, stand up and walk to a window to get some vitamin D,” Maloney encourages. “You’ll start to notice when you need a physical or mental reset – listen to music, walk, pick up a pair of weights. You can even stand in your office and do arm circles or air squats – anything to break the current cycle. Also, get used to the idea of scheduling off and down time. Put five minutes on your calendar for a break.”
Maloney recommends adding macro practices to your life, should you feel a sense of burnout or fatigue. “Find an outlet. It can be knitting, walking, running, exercise, anything that feeds the human part of you. Ask yourself, ‘When it’s not busy, what works for me.’ Family is wonderful but it can be complex and doing something that fills you up is how you’ll have enough to give back.”
Finally, be gentle with yourself. “Walk away if you have to. Instituting boundaries and giving hard stops for events and activities is a great way to practice self-care,” Maloney notes.
More resources for dealing with burnout and taking care of your mental health:
How to handle burnout and stress in esports: Jeff Palumbo shares some common causes of burnout and talks through resources to handle mental health around esports.
8 ways you can prioritize your mental and physical health: The everyday stress of studying and school plus the unprecedented societal upheaval and change over the past few years means prioritizing your mental and physical health is more important now than ever. Use these 8 health habits to improve your focus, energy level, and overall success in dealing with whatever comes your way.
Mental Health in K-12 Students: Educator and parent Jessi Stallings writes about how we need to prioritize mental health for younger generations.