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I’ve been off the grid. The Fall months were difficult for me. Trying to process all that has gone on over the last few years and the ongoing political climate alongside work and family life has been a lot to take in. I’ve been pretty burned out. I’ve let some things slide. Which, in my opinion, is a good thing. Here’s why.
Burnout makes one re-evaluate what is important and whittle away what isn’t. It takes work to combat. But the process has made me more reflective, focused, and grateful. I’ve become better at delegating, letting go, and saying yes more to doing fun things. It’s made me more realistic about what I can and want to accomplish.
With the holiday season upon us and a new year fast approaching, I’m re-energized and ready. Many of you might not be—and this time of year can be challenging. While exciting, holidays can also bring out a lot of stress and emotion. And a new year can create pressure to “do more.”
If you fall into that category, here are some things you can try.
Focus on three simple things that bring you joy. Simple is the key here. These things should be free, easy to access, and make you smile. It could be taking a walk in nature, spending time with your children or pet, reading, yoga, watching a sunrise or sunset, looking at photos of favorite people or places, or finding time to have fun. Whatever they are, try to soak them in and relish in the feeling for a few minutes anytime you’re feeling “off.” These mini-mental breaks are good for the soul and will help fuel your day.
Create boundaries. Stress often comes from overdoing, trying to please everyone, and perfectionistic tendencies. Setting realistic expectations will help. When possible, say no, delegate, and recognize that sometimes your best effort won’t be a masterpiece. Make sure to also create work/home boundaries. When working from home, it’s tough not to let your work responsibilities creep into your personal life. Make sure to exert some control over your work hours.
Simplify. You don’t have to be all things to all people. Figure out who and what is really important to you and do that well. If you have people, things, or habits in your life that continually derail you, consider making a change—or at least minimizing those types of interactions and behavior. When you find yourself in situations you can’t avoid, recognize the feelings they evoke, remind yourself they’re temporary, and take a deep breath.
Life can get messy. There will always be issues that challenge us. The key is to wisely manage our time and involvement in things and replenish ourselves in healthy ways. We can’t always choose our situations, but we can find ways to manage and react to them that lift us up and don’t burn us out.
Wishing you the best this holiday season and always. You’ve got this.