By Nate Whitten, March 26, 2015.
Have you found yourself burned out at the gym, with your job, your relationship, or all of the above? Don’t panic, it happens to everyone. Burnout is a term that refers to long-term exhaustion and diminished interest in various areas of living. Burnout has been assumed to result from chronic stress with the work that you are putting into any type of activity or relationship. It’s not the activity itself that you have lost interest in, but the effort and energy that you are expending is draining you of the joy you once felt through the activity.
Burnout doesn’t necessarily mean you need to stop doing what you’re doing, and changing your approach or motivation can revive the fire that you once had.
Use these tips to help evaluate what can help you propel your life forward with excitement and success, and what needs to be released that may be perpetuating your burnout experience.
It’s very normal to get burned out at the gym or while working on your physical fitness. If you are putting in a lot of energy and not seeing fast enough results, the experience can become arduous. This often happens because you are OVER training. One of the symptoms of overtraining is depression – a sure sign it’s time to make some changes to regenerate the passion you once had by changing:
• Your gym. The same equipment and set up can get stale. Not to mention the scenery of the physiques surrounding you.
• Your workout. You should change up your routine every six weeks. This means trying different techniques like Tabata, aerobic classes, heavy weights, outdoor workouts, longer versus shorter workouts, more or fewer training days.
• Your goal. If you’ve been trying to lose that last 10 pounds for the past year without any results, try focusing on a new goal. Rather than looking at the scale, aim for a different pant or dress size. Sometimes when you focus on one thing for too long you lose sight of other more effective ways to attain it.
Another very common type of burnout occurs in the work place. When monotony turns into burnout, this can result in frequent job changes. But the problem isn’t the job; it’s you. If you don’t want a 10-page resume by the time you are 30, try changing:
• Your motivation. Are you at this job for money or personal fulfillment? If it’s for the money, let your job become a tool to get what you want. But don’t expect validation from it. If you work for personal fulfillment, but are burned out, your boundaries are probably askew and you’re very passionately giving more to the company than to yourself. Fix that!
• Your environment. This doesn’t mean you have to quit your job and relocate, but you may be able to find a new challenge in a department at your current employment that you’ve never considered before.
• Your passion. When Marc Anthony said, “If you do what you love, you’ll never work a day in your life,” he didn’t mean you can make a living by doing your passion. He meant, love what you’re doing and it won’t feel like work. You’re not getting anything for free, but if you love what you do it’ll feel like it.
I know your relationship is different; you’re love fire will last beyond eternity. But, no. It won’t. Just like the romantic fire in the cozy fireplace, you need to stoke it every once in a while to keep it going. Try making this one change to your relationship to see if you can’t revive that dwindling flame:
• Your expectations. Change is inevitable – you’ve changed, she’s changed, he’s changed and we’ve changed – so try letting go of the expectations you had as you packed the U-Haul. To avoid burnout, allow for – and encourage – personal growth and endeavors by giving both of you space for exploration and learning. If you make room for individual flames you’ll always be in a new relationship, always excited to learn who this person is waking up next to you (not like the old days, when it was coyote ugly). This will allow you to see them as a whole new energetic person to get to know and fall in love with all over again from year to year.
Obviously, everything can’t change overnight. It took months or years to get to this burnout. But start making changes today and it won’t be long before your burnout burns out and you’ll be flaming once again, so to speak.