How to Put a rē•spin On End-Of-Year Burnout
Your wellness regimen doesn't have to hibernate.
With the holiday season imminent, gift shopping to do, and end-of-year festivities upcoming, responsibilities — including those that make up our wellness regimens — can feel more taxing than ever. To be frank, we’d rather hibernate when it’s chilly out and getting dark by 5 P.M… The cold weather makes workouts more challenging, and morning wellness shakes downright shiver-inducing, with all signs pointing to the snuggliest of staycations. There is just something about the end of the year that makes us want to put everything aside until January 1, neglecting the many facets that make up multidimensional wellness.
This, friends, is called burnout. Just knowing that a rē-commitment to new year’s resolutions is right around the corner makes it harder than ever to stay motivated. That’s why we reached out to Antonio Neves, a success coach and the author of Stop Living on Autopilot, to help us close out the year strong — and start the new one rē-freshed. Neves worked in the television industry in New York City for over a decade before rē-inventing his career in the leadership and development space, helping the ‘successful but stuck’ rē-discover their inspiration. “Burnout is real,” Neves tells rē•spin. “But don’t wait until the New Year to live the life you say you want. Start today with small steps. As the Spanish proverb goes, ‘Tomorrow is often the busiest day of the week.'”
Why is Burnout So Common Right Now?
Just because it takes work to keep dreams alive does not mean that they should simply fizzle out; on the contrary, keeping that spark alive takes work. “I’m inspired to remind people that they have a say in their lives and that their dreams need encouragement,” he says. As he points out, there are a number of reasons why motivational feelings might be hitting a wall, especially hard this year. For one, many of us are working from home “without a clear start and stop time” as we would in an office. “This means that people are working more than they think they are,” Neves points out. Plus, working remotely translates into a lack of connection. “A lack of connection to other people, like the colleagues they used to see regularly, and a lack of connection to the mission of their company, which is hard to feel when you’re working from your dinner table or couch at home.”
What to Do If You’re Feeling Burnt Out
Luckily, Neves is an expert at identifying and addressing the sources of burnout. One of the most important things you can do is to identify your priorities clearly. “Burnout sneaks upon us by not having our priorities in order. People think they are ‘crazy busy,’ but the truth is that most people are distracted and lack focus,” he says. To remedy this, remind yourself regularly about the most important deadline, assignment, meeting, or goal for the day or week. He also points out that checking your e-mail — and becoming inundated with all the unread messages — only feeds into the frenzied feelings of overwhelm that make burnout so detrimental. “Your inbox is not your to-do list,” he reminds us…
Yet another way to help treat the root cause of burnout is to connect with others, one of our core pillars. “No matter what, don’t isolate yourself,” Neves continues, noting that feelings of overwhelm tend to make you want to hide when really you should be doing the opposite. “My recommendation is to really connect by hearing someone’s voice or seeing their face with a video chat.” (Sorry, he says texts don’t count.)
Create Your Top 3
He also promotes that you proactively tend to your mood by identifying three feel-good habits or hobbies that will help to ensure that you have a good day and checking them off as you complete them throughout the day. This is one way to ensure that self-care is built into your regular lifestyle. “For some, this could be working out; for others, this could be meditation,” Neves says. “Many people like to educate themselves by reading ten pages of a book or listening to a podcast.” We also find that quality time with your pet can be therapeutic for you both.
Because stress and feelings of overwhelm are actually counterproductive, those of you that run anxious will benefit from making stress-reduction a priority, too. Fitness, including cortisol-conscious exercise like yoga and planning ahead to ensure nourishing snacks throughout the day, are two important methods for managing stress levels. Of course, you might also have weekly practices, such as therapy, or monthly practices, like facials or bodywork, that all serve as important breaks in the day to help your mind rē-balance from work — and rē-access your inspiration.
Let Others Support You
Resource-permitting, the support of a community must not be underestimated. “Don’t do it alone,” Neves says. “Consider hiring a life coach or joining a group coaching program. Schedule a weekly meetup, or gym glass, with a core group of encouraging friends.” This might also mean hiring an assistant, cleaning lady, babysitter — or pet-sitter. Sometimes added support from others is what provides you with the peace of mind and presence to commune with your goals truly.
For even more support in preventing and managing burn-out, look inside Neves’ book, Stop Living on Autopilot. You can also shop some of the motivating merch from the rē•spin shop below.
If a smoothie in the morning doesn’t appeal to you in the chillier months, consider a warm cup of bone broth instead.
If you’re too cold to go to the gym, try working out from home with some at-home fitness accessories.
Ostrich pillow Self-Care Journal
Keeping track of nutrition, intentions, reflections, and sleep, this journal helps you take charge of your self-care journey and make it a regular practice.