My parents had warned me I was doing too much.
I thought they were being obnoxious. I was convinced I was doing fine.
I was running on adrenaline (though I didn’t realize it at the time) and as long as I kept going there was no problem because I didn’t even have the time to wonder about that.
One Friday at the office, I felt I wanted to go home early—which was really strange for me as I always put in long days.
I had a four o’clock meeting with the marketing director and asked him to meet earlier.
He came into my office and said “We can do this on Monday.” Then he looked at me and asked “Are you okay?”
Tears welled up and I broke down.
I had no idea what was wrong.
My boss said “Go home. Don’t worry, we’ll talk on Monday.”
When I shared that story with my friend (a nurse) she concluded I was burned out.
My response? “I don’t think so.” (And I truly believed that.)
She asked if I had any physical complaints.
Well yeah, some nausea, headaches.
I ended up writing an entire page (!) of stuff I was feeling that felt off in my body.
Some other things on my list were:
- Shaking hands
- Difficulty sleeping
- Mind fog
- Upset stomach
- Trouble concentrating
My friend convinced me to go see a doctor the next day.
I gave him the list and he confirmed my friend’s verdict.
The doctor told me to ring my office and tell them I didn’t know how long it was going to take to recover.
That’s what I did.
I stayed home for three months on sick leave. Then I started building things back up again. With hindsight, I got back to work too soon.
Given what I’ve been through, I want you to catch a burnout as early as possible. Because the recovery will be quicker and less intense, and there’s less risk of permanent damage to your body.
That’s aside from the emotional turmoil and the time you ‘lose’ while you recover.
I know there’s a reason for everything we go through and I really want others to learn from my experience and to not have to go through a burnout if it can be avoided!
Learn to recognize symptoms of burnout as early as possible, so you can take better care of yourself (and those around you) and make a conscious decision.
I’ve supported many clients who were on the verge of a burnout (though often they didn’t know that themselves). Many people come to me because they want more energy, when a looming burnout is the real reason for their exhaustion.
Many others have never fully recovered from their burnout—even when they think they have. Because we get so used to the changes in our body and the lowering of energy that it often becomes our new normal.
If you’re wondering whether you’re facing a burnout or perhaps had one that went unacknowledged, then my Burnout Scan is perfect for you.
In this one-off call you get clear where you stand on the burnout scale and which actions you can take now to help you steer clear from disaster—or speed up your recovery.
Click here to schedule your Burnout Scan now. There are only a limited number of slots available.
Have a day full of energy and inspiration!
PS It’s time to stop pushing through.