Burnout - have you heard this term, do you know what it means? Could you be experiencing it without realising it?
Are you feeling unmotivated in work or life?
Are you more cynical about what you do for a job?
Have you lost the passion to do things?
Are you feeling insecure about what you do, or think it's just not worth bothering?
These are some of the questions that if you say 'YES' to could mean you're feeling 'Burntout'.
Not yet considered a medical issue, and it's also not depression or anxiety, though those can come, Burnout is it's own ailement, it is at that stage where work and stress have left you exhausted and you're wondering whether to jack it all in?
This was me in January 2021. The year before had been a tough one, my business was shut down over night by the government, then 6 weeks into lock down I broke my fibular and dislocated my tibia and bust 3 ligaments, needless to say I wasn't walking for some time let alone doing Shiatsu, then by November I caught Covid, but didn't think at the time I got very severe symptoms. Then by January 2021, 3 cousins had died, my dog nearly died and I was on the floor emotionally, but I still didn't twig; I thought it was the January blues...
However I was thinking: 'What is the point of it all? Shall I give up and go do something else?'
That was the clue, those thoughts were not how I normally feel, I'm passionate about what I do but I was absolutely zero'd that day. Luckily, I was leafing through Natural Health magazine and did a quiz on 'Burnout' just out of interest and I scored high! Ahhhh, I realised the stress of the previous 12 months had caught up with me and I was pretty exhausted, maybe more so emotionally than physically.
Maybe you can identify with some of these points,? Let's face it, 2020 was a pretty crud year for the majority and maybe that has spilled into 2021 for you. The positive point of this is that if you can note this about yourself you can turn it around, before it becomes a serious health issue like adrenal fatigue, daily anxiety or darkest depression.
You may be reading this in the summer and thinking, nope that's not me, but think about last winter, did you have shades of this, and could it come again this winter? As I write this in August, this time next month it's technically Autumn, and you will feel it in the air, it'll have that crispness in the morning and be dark by 9pm on Sept 1st and 7pm by the end of the month, nights draw in quickly through Sept/Oct and this can leave you feeling drained in itself. Preparation is key as preventing a bout of burnout/ winter fatigue/ SAD starts now!
The realisation that you have this going on is your first major step to resolving it, it's not something to be embarrassed about, it's something to take action on. If you're in a job with an HR department and you feel that you are in crisis about your position, talk to them, use the word Burnout and see if leave is possible. Then, put this leave to good use as sitting at home and thinking about it isn't going to resolve it, but there are very real physical actions you can take to turn this around. Here are some options, and I suggest doing as many of them as possible:
GET INTO NATURE
This is your real antidepressant, go to the woods, beach, lakes, immerse yourself in a day of nature, or even go to a petting zoo! At least half a day in this way will re-energise you and make you feel as though you've had a mini break, it's so powerful, and you can look up 'forest bathing' (don't worry, you keep your clothes on!). This is from Japan, an organised way of immersing yourself therapeutically in nature , there are more and more online options to sign up for now, this will help you engage with and be supported through the experience. Locally in Cheltenham / Cotswold is Mindfulness and walking specifically designed to help men talk through 'stuff'.
'Walk away from the computer'- you're not at work in evenings and weekends, and whilst on leave, switch off the PC, leave the tablet, and a lot specific times to look at your phone if you really can't leave it alone, Try though to go for a whole day, prove you're not a social media junky and just note how different you feel; you'll realise the continual stress it exerts!
WALK IT OFF
You can do this at any point on any day, even if at work. Walk during your breaks, brave the elements and you'll feel better for it on your return. As well as physically improving your breathing, it's been scientifically proven that it lowers your stress rate, and it'll combat those aches from sitting at a desk all day. Re-energise even if it's just 10/15 minutes.
EATING A PLANT BASED DIET
I'm a meat eater so I'm not about to talk vegan to you. What I will say though from all my reseach is that laying off meat and dairy takes a stress off your kidneys. This in turn allows your adrenals to rest and restore, this is your constitutional energy, so if you're in a really bad way, looking to eat this way temporarily at least is beneficial. Also adding more plants (fruit n veg) into your life is a good thing. Most people really don't get enough nutrients at all, and these are best got from the veg you eat, and then the short fall followed up with plant based supplements (Cytoplan/Modexus are the 2 I use and recommend). Eating and supplementation is a huge part of restoring yourself whether you have burnout or not, if this is something that you're interested in changing or supporting why not book a Health and Vitality call with me?
This is a very gentle style, putting your body into deeply nourishing and restorative positions, not as difficult as you think and can also be quite meditative as you relax into the positions for many minutes as you want, have a look here
TALK ABOUT IT
Talk about it honestly, not moaning but therapeutic discussion, if you don't have a friend who can help then look for a holistic therapist (like me!) who can understand and help. It's not that this needs councilling it needs discussion to help raise you energetically out of the rut your burnout has stuck you in.
RECONNECT YOUR MIND, BODY AND SPIRIT
This is where Shiatsu and all good therapies come in. You're immersing yourself in nature, you're eating well and you're talking about it, but we've got to get your sleep back, your body's energies back in balance and help you resolve those aches you're feeling. Plus you may also be feeling emotionally quite low.
Shiatsu is based on the principles of the theory of Chinese Medicine. This is a powerful model that takes symptoms of emotions and the body, works out the connections and then through gentle finger pressure on the known acu points aims to bring the two back into unity. You'll leave feeling in touch with your body again, lighter, calmer, and more emotionally balanced. With Shiatsu you get 2 treatments in one, your physical therapy combined with an emotionally supportive one.
I love supporting people who have complex and stressful careers, receiving shiatsu helps them process and recover from, to move forwards with the best possible health.
"I am loving these massages; they've changed how i am in my body, they've shifted my energy & helped me reset myself regularly. Andrea is so skilled, professional, and attentive, and I really appreciate her care."
Burnout when caught can be short lived and turned around quickly but left to linger and go deeper into your body it will become a deeper chronic health issue and manifest as an unshifting fatigue, arising anxiety and lowering moods. Prevention and maintence of your health is key here, and it starts in the good weather too, don't leave it so late that you're fighting to get back to your optimal health.
You deserve to have the best health, physically and mentally, you deserve to have regular therapy and 'me' time. Don't wait for shoulder tension or back ache, or your knee 'to go', book in for a Shiatsu like you would a massage and enjoy the experience whilst in the confidence that you're doing the very best for your health for now and for your future. Book a shiatsu treatment or health and vitality call here.
"Andrea’s shiatsu treatments make my life better. She has helped me with everything from lower back pain and tightness in my shoulders and neck to sleeplessness. The treatment is thoroughly relaxing and has truly helped to restore a feeling of balance to my life.If you’re thinking of trying shiatsu, go for it! You won’t be disappointed."
Andrea is a Shiatsu and Chinese Medicine practitioner based in Cheltenham UK. As well as 15 years of hands on experience Andrea also helps women alleviate their peri/menopausal symptoms naturally using her knowledge of chinese medicine. Plus there is the option of having self shiatsu and health support via zoom. Since Covid Andrea has expanded to helping people all around the UK with her unique style in health support.