According to Herbert J. Freudenberger, burnout is described as, “A state of fatigue or frustration brought about by devotion to a cause, way of life, or relationship that failed to produce the expected reward.” There are two major factors that are involved in being burned out—extreme stress as well as disappointment over unachieved goals. However, it is possible to have success and satisfaction after experiencing burnout.
Finding Success and Satisfaction
“You can only ‘burn out’ if you have been ‘alight’ in the first place. That is a concise yet true statement. Individuals who experience burnout have to be extremely committed to their work to begin with. Burnout is a result of working too much without allowing yourself to have the time to properly regroup. According to MindTools.com, “exhaustion can be overcome with rest; however a core part of burnout is a deep sense of disillusionment.” Burnout can take many forms from a pessimistic and cynical attitude to extreme feelings of inadequacy or emptiness. MindTools.com offers a free Burnout Self-Test. The steps listed below provide effective ways on how to find success and satisfaction after burnout.
1. Rediscover Your Purpose
Finding success and satisfaction after burnout begins with rediscovering your purpose. It is important to find that sense of purpose again in your work and to discover the drive that motivated you before the burnout occurred. When you rediscover your purpose and then work diligently at keeping it as a main core of your perspective, you increase your chances of keeping future burnout out of the picture. As you make the effort to find your purpose again, think about the positive impact you have had and continue to have on your personal and professional sphere of influence. Seeing your impact potential in the everyday can help you to rediscover your purpose.
2. Review the Situation
After rediscovering your purpose, it is good to have a time of reflection. Review the situation and remember the pathway that brought you to the burnout state. It may be difficult to think about those negative circumstances. However, taking a step back and reflectively evaluating the situation will help you to focus again on negative factors that you don’t want to be repeated. Fully comprehending how you got into your current circumstances will help you to have a changed perspective when you make a decision not to become depressed.
3. Find Ways to Give Back
Opening yourself up to new possibilities in finding ways to give back to others, can also help you to have success and find satisfaction after burnout. For example, seek out a less experienced colleague to mentor them and share your knowledge and life experiences. When you get your mind off of yourself and situation and focused on helping others that will motivate you to keep persevering each day. Don’t be surprised at how even tiny gestures of kindness will energize you and move you further toward success and away from burnout.
4. Effectively Manage Your Life
This final step involves finding ways to effectively manage your life. You need to take control of the reins and not permit burnout to happen again. Become a self-governor of your life and learn when to say no to projects that are out of your league or that you don’t have time for. Learn how to take responsibility for your own actions and don’t embrace the need to try to fix others and their issues. Become more organized in how you manage your daily tasks and don’t overbook your schedule with meetings and work projects. It is also important to create immediate, short-term and long-term goals which will help you to stay focused on the end result. Additionally, find the time to exercise regularly and be certain to maintain your health with a healthy diet and get regular and consistent sleep. Learning how to effectively manage your stress will increase your chances of finding success and satisfaction after experiencing burnout.
Finding success and satisfaction after having experienced burnout is a four-part process beginning with rediscovering your purpose. The process continues as you review your current situation and understand how you arrived there. It is vital to find ways to give back and then learn measures to effectively manage your life.
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