With the end of the year coming to a rapid close, many of my clients are reporting depleted energy levels and increased fatigue. Indeed, nearly 2 years into this pandemic, many are feeling burnout from this rollercoaster that is COVID 19.
According to Beyond Blue: “Burnout is a state of complete mental, physical and emotional exhaustion caused by excessive stress over a long period of time. Though typically associated with people working in high-pressure jobs, burnout can affect anyone.”
Some signs of burnout:
Feeling mentally and physically exhausted.
Disconnecting yourself from the world and family and friends around you.
Being unable to focus on or perform even simple tasks (at work or at home).
Struggling to stay motivated and caring less and less.
Becoming irritable or losing your temper easily with those around you.
The key is to recognise the signs and take steps in supporting your wellbeing. Integral to this is being gentle to your self, exercising some self-compassion and self-care. Do things at your own pace and feel OK setting boundaries.
This can be tricky at Christmas, especially when there are expectations to catch up with family and friends over the festive period, so soon after lockdowns. I know I am still struggling to reintegrate socially after such a long time in isolation. For me, it comes back to basics. Focus what’s within my circle of control and how I can replenish my vitality. Boosting my vitality is about focusing on what brings me energy in the following three areas:
Physical: Nurturing the behaviours that replenish my physical wellbeing
Psychological: Investing the time and energy to master my own mind. To choose the thoughts that give me energy and maintain a positive outlook.
Emotional and Spirit: Being aware of my emotions and choosing how I want to “Be.” Connecting to my purpose, community and natural environment.
Here are some ideas of how I intend to reinvigorate my energy over the Christmas break.
Keep up my fruit and vegetable intake over the holiday season. By doing so I keep my nutrients up and my body healthy. It may also mean that I am too full for that extra mince pie!
Although the holidays often involve more consumption of alcohol, I will be maintaining my alcohol free days. This will give my body some time to recover and repair and also support my sleep and motivation for nutritious food and regular activity.
Maintain my regular bedtime ritual. Although it can be tempting to stay up late and catch up on Netflix, I am feeling more positive and productive waking at sunrise and being in bed by 9pm.
Keep up my exercise routine. When away camping, take my yoga mat and enjoy a stretch in nature. Also, some gymnastic moves with my son Samuel!
Continue my mindfulness practice. I have been experimenting with the “Calm” app and have been enjoying a variety of mediations that help me focus on better sleep and adaptive strategies to better manage stress and anxiety.
Keep a worry log and thought diary to identify and challenge any negative thoughts and beliefs.
Keep my gratitude journal and savour what’s good!
Emotional & Spiritual
Connect with family and friends in a COVID safe fashion. This will also involve enjoying my 50thbirthday with a family BBQ. A time for reflection and celebration.
Over the holidays I look forward to taking some time out in nature, camping with family and on other occasions, climbing with a friend. It’s my sure way of connecting with the present, gaining some perspective and having a vital reboot!
Over the New Year I will reconnect with my values and write my wellness vision for 2022. This will include reassessing my priorities, creating boundaries and scheduling time for rest, recovery and reflection.
So some questions to ponder…
How would you rate your current energy and vitality on a scale of 1-10?
What areas are currently draining you of energy?
What can you change or do different?
What areas boost your sense of vitality?
What are you willing to experiment withy during the holiday period?
PS in February I will be launching my “Being Vital” 8-week coaching program… But more about this in the New Year!
Take care and be well J