Burnout is a real problem in businesses, volunteer and charity groups and church organizations. Sam Keen says, “Burnout is nature’s way of telling you, you’ve been going through the motions your soul has departed; you’re a zombie, a member of the walking dead, a sleepwalker. False optimism is like administrating stimulants to an exhausted nervous system.”
Here are ten basic milestones to keep a check on. If these milestones go unchecked burnout is just around the corner.
- Inadequate breaks and rest.
- Idealistic and unrealistic standards.
- Constant low-grade stress.
- Lack of help and assistance.
- Chronic fatigue from pushing oneself beyond the limit.
- Strong sense of responsibility, even when others have “dropped the ball.”
- Guilty feelings about missing the mark.
- Heavy job responsibilities/expectations.
- Inability or a strong reluctance to say no.
How Do We Deal With Burnout?
Dr. Ben Carson, pediatric neurosurgeon, in “Unit of One: Don’t Burn Out” (May 2000) wrote these words, “I have a prescription for boosting your resistance to burnout: Get outside yourself, and do something that has nothing to do with your normal day’s work… Do other things. Do things for other people, if you can. Do whatever you must to get the focus off your own problems. You need to have a diversion, particularly when times are difficult.”
In dealing with the subject of burnout Chuck Swindoll says this, “You’re through. Finished. Burned out. Used up. You’ve been replaced. . . forgotten. That’s a lie!” There are ways to stop burnout. But before one can stop burnout there must be a clear understanding as to what causes it in the first place.
If you are dealing with burnout here are a few suggestions to help:
- Admit that you’re burned out. Don’t let your pride be the fuel for burnout.
- Try to pin down the reasons behind your feelings of burnout.
- Change what you can and let go of what you have no control over.
- Exercise and eat right and get sufficient sleep.
- Spend quality time with family and friends.
And last, RELAX! Relaxation is your best friend.