Burnout: What to Look for and How to Cope

Burnout | The Silver Pen

Burnout.

Before leaving for vacation, I was feeling overworked, stressed and a tad bit burned out. Gosh, that feels weird to write. And acknowledge. But it’s true. You see, in addition to writing the blog everyday and the book, I write every word of my social media (Twitter, Pinterest, Facebook, and Instagram).  I am also doing more video work (those will be forthcoming) and making plans for the book launch and traveling for speaking engagements. Now, this is NOT a complaint. Not at all because I am really excited about, grateful for and loving what I am doing.

The thing of it is, though, I felt like I was living a daily cliché: one step forward, two steps back. Heaven knows that I know that life can be tricky like that. And I also know that post-FBC, I have a tendency to want to pack things in. However….I also must acknowledge that living this way isn’t healthy, physically or mentally.

Here are some of the signs that I had indicating that I was burning out:

  • chronic fatigue
  • irritability
  • self-criticism
  • lack of motivation
  • negativity
  • weight gain
  • sleeplessness
  • I thought I was burned out

Believe it or not (actually, you’ll probably believe it!), I’m choosing to see burnout as a Silver Lining, something that I needed. I am a firm believer that the universe shows us what we need, at the precise time that we need it.  And this is a perfect example.

My #1 priority in my life is my health.  My #2 priority (a very close 2nd!) is my family.  If I don’t have these, then I don’t have anything.

So, what to do?  First things first:

  1. Scale back a bit.  I hope that you will bear with me as I blog 3 days a week instead of 5. I think that this pace will be much more feasible.
  2. Unplug more often.  I have been feeling absolutely glued to my computer, my phone and my iPad. A friend of mine has “screen-free Sundays” and I’m thinking about adopting that practice as well.
  3. Say “No” more often. Now this is super-challenging for me, especially as I am lining up the upcoming book tour, but it is important. Really important.
  4. Prioritize family and friend life. Actually, I have been prioritizing my family.  Life lately has been all work and family.  What I really need to do is add more girlfriend time into my life. I miss my girlfriends. They are such a humongous source of energy, compassion and support in my life.
  5. Sleep. Sleep. Sleep. Zzzzzzz…..

Have you ever been burned out?  If so, what do you do about it?  Any helpful hints?

 

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Comments

  1. Inni says

    I am very happy with three posts instead of five – as I am unplugging most of the weekday evenings after work, I mostly read my fave blogs on Saturday morning. I am always ridiculously glad if I find even one post from you then, not to mention three.

    Being healthily selfish creates a good balance with the things you want to do and the things you end up doing. Take care!

  2. Carolee Groux says

    Dear Hollye,
    I think your plan to reduce your blog posts, and to have a Sunday free from technology is a good one. You will find with less writing you will be less stressed. Reducing your quantity of work, will enable better quality time in both your work and lifestyle.
    I almost never go online on Sundays; it is a day away giving me more time for family and fun.
    When not on book tour, enjoy more girlfriend time. We, your readers, promise to stay loyal.

  3. says

    So glad to hear that you're prioritizing. I have felt overwhelmed almost every single day of my life since I had kids. It's extremely hard to say "no" to things (especially for moms) and yet it's very important to take a break and focus on #1 your health and #2 your own sanity. I think we'll all miss your 5x a week posts, but will be more than happy to get by on 3, since it will mean that you'll be happier and healthier with a tiny bit less on your plate.

  4. ann boyer says

    What assumptions are behind one's busyness? Am I thinking that I am the only one who can say this, do this, write this, save this person (whoever it s)? When I look at my real assumptions, I can see what mistakes I am making. Somehow I have been getting attached to agendas I have come up with, plans which are at least slightly off-track. I have based too much emphasis on the importance of myself and my own notions, themes, tasks and plans.

    • silverpen says

      Amazing insight, Ann. thank you so much for sharing. It reminds me of the quote that i posted some time ago…Every Day We Begin Again. :)