It seems to be that a there is a large amount of people struggling with daily life, on a physical or mental level or both and just getting to the point where they feel utterly burnt out. It has been on my mind a lot recently since a close family member suffered a burnout and I have begun to consider why so many of us are pushed to the point where our body and mind has just had enough.
I think that the age we live in is an amazing time, our access to technology, medicine, food availability and travel have all massively changed over the past 100 or so years. We are very lucky to have video calling, antibiotics, fabulous medical equipment, food from all over the world whenever we want it and the option to travel to far flung destinations to experience other cultures. BUT sadly this has come with a price and actually it’s a huge price…..our health and wellbeing.
Disconnected from the earth
We have lost touch with nature and our primal instincts, so many people are out of touch with the earth and disconnected from nature and for me thats quiet a scary thought !
- A large chunk of the population live in apartment blocks with air conditioning and no outside space or housing estates where greenspace is scarce.
- So many people eat highly processed foods filled with chemicals and additives, creating illness and dis-ease which is then treated in a sticking plaster style with drugs.
- Our modern way of working means that we often work inside and many often don’t venture outside into the sunlight on days off or vacations.
- The clothes and shoes we wear are manufactured using man made materials and we barely ( if ever) walk barefoot on the ground.
- It has also become popular to lay plastic lawns in our back gardens and pave over our driveways discouraging insects and wildlife.
So many are effectively devoid of any sort of connection with the earth and I believe this is hugely contributing to the general feeling of being “burnt out”
We are also permanently over-stimulated, how many people do you know that when they have a moment to themselves immediately reach for their phone ? We are also constantly bombarded by emails, phone calls, texts and voice messages. For down time we watch a film or TV, scrolling mindlessly on social media watching video after video not taking in any of the content.
Everybody in our friends list has access to us 24/ 7. Phones pinging with messages throughout the wee hours of the night and work emails dropping into our inboxes constantly. It feels like we are open for business and available to chat throughout the day …..and night.
No down time, minimal quiet time, no time in nature and in some cases no connection to Mother Earth at all! can only point to one thing “BURNOUT”
Our Amazing Bodies
Our bodies are amazing , they are like a finely tuned machine that is constantly communicating with itself and whenever there’s a problem it sends signals to fix itself. Given the right conditions and environment the body should tick over nicely with minimum intervention for a lifetime.
But…. modern life and all its amazing technologies and benefits are changing the environment that we are naturally meant to live in.
- We are supposed to eat organic non processed foods – fruit, vegetables, fish and meat. Our bodies struggle to process fake food and chemicals.
- We are not supposed to be stuck inside, living a sedentary lifestyle, our bodies need vitamin D and our natural state is not sitting. We need to move more.
- Our brains should not be in a permanent state of over stimulation, this can have a devastating effect within the body especially the nervous system. Anxiety and depression can be the result of over stimulation and chronic stress can leave us more prone to lifestyle diseases such as stroke, type II diabetes and cardiovascular disease.
The answer to the burnout problem isn’t one size fits all and a quick fix, it’s a complex situation that individuals need to consider for themselves. Can you take an honest look at your life and see where you could make changes to bring a more natural way of being back into your life?
Prevention & Healing
Getting back to a state of wellness after burning out or almost burning out is a slow and steady process. It involves looking at your well-being from a holistic perspective and from a place of love and compassion.
Assess your situation, do you need help from a health professional? If you are full on burnout then the answer is probably yes. Have a chat with your GP to see if they can offer you support during this time.
Once you have any urgent physical or mental health issues under control then being more present with yourself is a great place to begin.
- Put down your phone when possible and turn off your notifications unless absolutely necessary.
- Create regular “out of the office” time within your day when you can get on with your day to day tasks without interruption and distraction.
- Create time in your day to just be, to just do nothing (This can be challenging on many levels, maybe reflect on why this makes you uncomfortable)
- Have compassion and kindness for yourself.
The aim is to free up some space in your mind so that you can begin to connect with yourself again.
Nurture your insides
- Avoid processed foods where possible.
- Try and bring balance into your diet with fresh natural foods.
- Drink more water
- Educate yourself about food, learn about the foods that suit you and your body type.
Nourishing the body with good food supports your body’s healing as well as bringing you closer to the earth.
Practices that help you to kickstart the body / mind connection are really helpful during this time. So, why not begin a regular practice of yin yoga, meditation and begin to work with the five element theory to help support your healing and begin to rebuild your connection with yourself and the earth.
- Spend time on your yoga mat either at a class or at home.
- Try and create time every day to meditate, even if its five minutes (giving your mind space and a rest)
- Learn how life force energy can effect your wellness and find out how you can work with it by using the five element theory.
- Take time out of the day to journal and keep track of your progress.
Exercise and quiet time helps to rebalance the nervous system reducing anxiety and stress and also relieving tension and energetic blockages that are in the physical body. Journaling helps with self awareness and also helps you to keep track of your progress giving you motivation to continue with your practice.
- Do at least one thing each day that brings your pleasure, take a bath, read a book, eat something delicious, see a friend, take a walk in the sunshine.
- Explore other holistic therapies that may be helpful to you such as kinesiology, reflexology, massage or Reiki.
- Look at ways that you can change your lifestyle to allow more peace and space for yourself. A tough one, but an important one.
I want you to know that although recovering from a burnout episode is tough , its totally possible. You can do it because you are amazing and so is your body.
The thing to remember is to be kind to yourself! It’s the beginning of a new and exciting journey where you get to make a new start. Every day you are stepping towards a brighter, shinier and happier you. If today feels shitty, then remember tomorrow is a new day with a fresh new start.
And if in doubt just get onto your yoga mat and breathe or go and hug a tree
Take care of you
Lots of Love Lisa x
I hope you found this post useful, let me know your thoughts on burnout in the comments below.