Welcome, it’s been quite some time since I’ve attempted to write with purpose. I intended to pause because I needed some time. Some time to think about my next step on my journey, time to re-evaluate the important things in my life, and time to recharge. My pause seemed to turn into a permanent stop. I think the “stop” was important for me. All too often we overwhelm ourselves or push through things when a step back may be necessary. So, as we did before, let’s talk. Let’s discuss what it looks like to take a step back and telltale signs that indicate it’s time to slow down.

Burnout is REAL and it affects so many people and often they don’t even know it. Since you know I love definitions lets break down what burnout is; burnout is a state of chronic stress that can manifest in being mentally, physically, or emotionally exhausted by circumstances within your life. Burnout can be caused by a job, a relationship, etc. Although burnout is mostly related to job stress, lifestyle can be a contributing factor as well.

When I was growing up I rarely saw my mother take a pause. I normalized the fact that as an adult being exhausted is part of the deal. My mother was always on the go, a pause wasn’t likely in her future. When you’re a parent or you have a job you can’t up and quit, and I’ve never advised my clients too. But I do say ..did you eat today, did you take some time and just meditate for the first 10-30 mins of your day, or did you get to read that book you’ve been dying to read for just an hour (or listen to it)? However, the most important and telling question I ask is, how are you with listening to your body.

Listening to what your body is telling you is crucial. We listen to our bodies when it tells us we’re hungry or feel sick. Nothing stops us from receiving what our bodies are telling us and following through to fulfill what our bodies need. I now ask the question, what stops you from taking a pause when you feel burnt out. It is that we live in a push through it culture? Is it that you don’t think you owe it yourself to reassess? Lastly, is it that you have convinced yourself you have no time to take care of yourself?

We have become so accustomed to pushing ourselves to a limit that at times can land us in a dark place or the hospital. So, what are some signs of burnout?

1.Chronic fatigue

2. Insomnia.

3. Forgetfulness/impaired concentration and attention

4. Physical symptoms.

5. Increased illness.

6. Loss of appetite.

7. Anxiety.

8. Depression.

9. Anger.

These are the most common symptoms that can be experienced. When dealing with burnout it may be hard to fulfill your daily task because emotionally, mentally, and physically it feels like you have run out of fuel. For me, I felt like I was physically running on empty and instead of pushing myself harder, I took a step back and evaluated what I could and couldn’t do. I did 3 important things. 1.) I identified what I was lacking. If that meant I wasn’t eating properly or I started slacking on my exercise, I reincorporated those things. 2.) I stopped overextending myself and set boundaries. This meant I set aside time to relax and I prioritized going to my therapy and I stopped working over my hours. 3.) I cut out things I couldn’t handle and started doing things that brought me peace. At the time, that meant I needed a break from my writing. I couldn’t think clearly, this meant my writing would suffer. The things that brought me peace were free writing and window shopping. I love to go into stores and look at art it brings me a weird joy I can’t quite explain. Anyway, I listened to what was going on with me instead of insisting I figure it out later. I paused and later decided a stop was more appropriate. I choose not to judge myself for pushing myself to this point. The most important thing was I realized I needed a break before it worsened.

I encourage you to trust yourself. I encourage you to listen to your body instead of societies voice telling you you’re lazy or you’re being weak when you need a pause or to stop.


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