My candle burns at both ends;
It will not last the night. - Edna St. Vincent Millay
Setting the world on fire comes with risks. Unfortunately, we usually don't realize this until the smoke gets in our eyes.
Burnout is a condition caused by unbalance: too much work or responsibility, too little time to do it, over too long a period. We've been cruising in the fast lane but we've been running on fumes rather than on fuel. Often we think that burnout is something that just happens to other people, to workaholics and perfectionists. But it happens to anyone who cares too much and over-commits. It's easy to do!
· It's burnout when you go to bed exhausted every night and wake up tired every morning - when no amount of sleep refreshes you, month after month.
· Burnout is when everything becomes too much effort: combing your hair, fixing a meal or even going out to dinner.
· It's burnout when neither big thrills nor little moments have the power to move you.
What to do?
If you suspect that you are facing burnout and have that exhausted stressed-out feeling, take time throughout the day to stop and take a few deep breaths and remind yourself that in ten years this is not going to make a bit of difference.
Just slow down! You are more important that whatever is going on! Find a good book to read or rent a few movies and allow yourself at least an hour a day, every day, to relax and enjoy yourself. Or have coffee with a friend, or a massage, or go for a walk along the beach, or take a bubble bath complete with candles and aromatherapy and just soak up the soothing warmth. Taking time every day for yourself can head off that body-depleting, soul-snuffing case of burnout!
Now that you are ready to consider omitting activities from your busy schedule, we ask you to consider adding one more: The Red Hat Society. You won’t regret it. Picture periodically claiming a few hours of girl-time for yourself, enjoying care-free chatter and fun with friends. It enriches the soul.
(Adapted from: Simple Abundance Day Book of Comfort and Joy, by Sarah Ban Breathnauch)