Burnout has a cancer-like insidious onset. Often you’re not aware its happening until… you’re there. You may think you’re just tired, or you feel overwhelmed because there’s a lot on your plate. Or maybe you just snapped at a co-worker without provocation. Pay attention. You could be on your way to a major case of burnout.
Professional behavior specialists agree that one of the keys to alleviating burnout is alleviating stress. We hear it all the time but its true… stress can kill you.
Stress manifests itself in the body in many ways. High blood pressure, increased cortisol levels and immune system suppression are all symptoms of poor stress management. Chronic stress can produce hair loss, anxiety, panic attacks, insomnia, fatigue, depression and weight loss or weight gain.
What Can You Do?
There are many options for stress relief. Exercise is always the first choice. Yes, you’ve heard this all before but people who exercise regularly produce hormones that help their bodies cope with stress of the day. Sorry, its true. Yoga can be a calming, relaxing exercise especially when slow meditative poses are used. Hatha yoga is a good example of this.
So, maybe you’ve worked a 12-hour shift and you can’t figure out how to make yourself exercise. Start small. Studies have shown that people who listen to classical music, especially from the baroque period, on a regular basis can, over time, develop the resting heart rate of a competitive distance runner. Baroque composers include Bach, Vivaldi and Pachelbel.
Where Do You Start?
Here’s an audio series from acclaimed psychologist Dr. Frank Lawlis called the Mind Body Relaxation Series. His program has been endorsed by Dr. Phil and others.
Dr. Lawlis has appeared on television to discuss his work in clinical psychology and has authored and co-authored several books including the Mosby Textbook on Alternative Medicine, The ADD Answer and the The Stress Answer – Train Your Brain to Conquer Depression and Anxiety in 45 Days.
Whatever you decide to do, make sure you follow through and stick with it. It may take one tactic or a combination of several achieve the desired result.