Feeling completely drained at some point during the academic term is completely normal. Part of the reason why burn out has been particularly prominent this year is because the days have been running into each other. I find it harder to breakdown my day to incorporate different activities and I tend to just focus on the work I have to do, which can be quite frustrating.
This year burn out is somehow worse, at least for me, so I thought I would share some of the strategies I use to help me get through the day. It’s nothing ground breaking but it’s practical and I hope it helps.
Sometimes it’s as simple as remembering to breathe when you’re feeling overwhelmed. Slow down the pace at which you do things and try to tackle life moment by moment instead of all at once.
Plan out your day
Make sure you plan your day properly and realistically. Do the work you have to do but take breaks. Don’t force yourself to work in 2 hours blocks if you can’t do it. The more burned out you feel, the more breaks you should take. They don’t all have to be hour long breaks, they could be 5- 10 minutes long.
Admittedly, I am very bad at communicating with people when I’m stressed and tired, but I think it’s in these times that doing so is imperative. It is helpful to talk to someone at least once every day, friend or family. In general, talking about what you’re struggling with or how you’re feeling helps you navigate through your emotions and often lifts the weight off your shoulders a bit. You’ll often find that you’re not alone in feeling overwhelmed and you may even get some helpful tips on how to cope.
Rest but don’t overdo it
It’s very easy to want to stop everything and neglect your duties and tasks but part of enjoying rest periods is not having work looming over your head. Rest is important, so make sure you take time for yourself each week, but make sure you do all you can to help yourself fully enjoy it. No man is a machine.
I’m fairly sure a lot of us already do these things, but I think being reminded of small practical steps to take to help yourself never hurts. I hope you’re all doing well? If not, please reach out for help.
Hang in there.