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How To Prevent Burnout

April 7, 2023

Our Stress Awareness Month newsletter series is focused on raising awareness and educating our readers about stress. The series will consist of four articles, which will be released once a week throughout the month of April. Each article will cover different aspects of the impact of stress on the body, offering helpful tips and information to encourage readers to prioritize stress management and their health.

If you feel cynical and hopeless about your job or responsibilities, have a hard time concentrating or motivating yourself to do even simple tasks, wake up every morning dreading the day to come, and are just straight-up exhausted (physically, mentally, and emotionally), you might be dealing with burnout.

Stress is a normal, instinctive response that kicks in when you’re feeling like you’re in danger. In response, your brain kicks off a series of hormonal responses that can help you respond quickly — in other words, your “fight or flight” response. But in this day and age, stress might look more like a looming deadline, an urgent personal matter, or a constant onslaught of unrealistic expectations from your employers. Unfortunately, many people face this type of stress on a regular basis, and sometimes it can feel never-ending. If it goes on for too long, it can lead to “burnout”: a feeling of hopelessness, exhaustion, and depression. Not only can it make you disinterested and perform poorly at the tasks at hand, but it can also lead to issues like depression, unhealthy coping mechanisms, poor sleep, and irritability. At worst, burnout has even been linked to serious health issues like systemic inflammation, a weakened immune system, metabolic syndrome, and even cardiovascular disease [1].

So how can you prevent burnout, especially if you feel like you’re stuck? It might sometimes feel hopeless, but the good news is that there are several methods you can incorporate into your routine to give yourself some control over how you handle a bad situation. Some methods that people in high-stress situations use to prevent burning out include [2]:  

  • Realigning your personal goals and expectations to be realistic and achievable
  • Learning to recognize signs that you are starting to get burnt out, and taking the time to deal with your physical response with stress-managing techniques like deep breathing exercises, journaling, or self-reflection first
  • Eating a healthy and nutritious diet throughout the day and exercising frequently to manage stress levels
  • Making time to see your friends, family, and loved ones, as well as time for yourself
  • Practicing meditation and mindfulness exercises, and talking to a mental health professional if necessary
  • Finding activities/hobbies outside of responsibilities that make you happy, and carving out time in your schedule to do them often

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  • Formulated Specifically for Patients with Occasional Sleeplessness
  • Promotes Calmness and Relaxation
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Finally, it’s important to not neglect the importance of sleep, since poor sleep quality can often predict burnout [3]. Practicing good “sleep hygiene” (stopping your last meal at least 4 hours before bed, setting a regular bedtime for yourself - preferably by 9-10 pm, limiting screen exposure at night, and keeping your sleeping environment calm), can help you get into a good bedtime routine, and taking sleep-support supplements like Cerenity PM to promote relaxation can also do a world of good.

Please note, if you continue to struggle with your sleep after trying the above methods, we encourage you to have your hormone levels checked as this can indicate an underlying issue that you will want to have looked at.

Remember, you can only function at your highest potential if your body and mind are fully equipped to deal with it, and pushing yourself to the point of burning out is very often a step in the wrong direction. No matter how urgent those things on your schedule may seem, taking the time to focus on your mental health first is imperative to handling whatever the world throws at you.