I was working so hard at trying to achieve my goals and dreams, the focus started to blur and I became unsure of my aim. Much like a word you repeat over and over and over again.. It began to sound empty and lose all meaning.
At the same time I noticed my weight was going up…
You know that saying “ I don’t have time to get fit” .. well I understand it on a whole new level now..
It’s not that you can’t make time to get fit.. it’s that when you finally stop working on all of your goals and tasks in your day, AND add in your personal obligations, you’re just so exhausted the idea of exercise and hours in the kitchen cooking healthy meals become torturous… when you have time, all you want to do is sit down and zone out… Well, that’s how i felt anyways….that was me.
And much like the rest of us, I’d turn to google’s self help advice and rely on Facebook quotes posted by people I admired who were “making their dreams come true” or hitting all of their goals with pride. I’d look to them for guidance… The general consensus was ” don’t give up”, “work hard and it will come”, and “if you don’t work for it nothing will happen in your life”….
The thing is, this advice (advice that usually worked so well at motivating and inspiring me) well, it made me feel worse about myself as I couldn’t understand why I was losing all desire to make my goals a reality… this on it’s own made me want to escape… and what better way of doing that then through yummy food and tasty alcohol.
So I gained 15 pounds, felt completely unsure about my direction in life and when I had a spare second to contemplate my next move, I chose to sleep instead…. It was time to make a change..
I decided it was time for a major change.. So I to ditched every single one of my goals …….but it’s not as simple as that.
I needed a break. I needed to shut off my Facebook, put all goals aside and somehow find peace of mind that it was completely OK and normal to ditch my goals and IF or when I was ready to embrace them once again, I could pick up very close to where I left off and it wouldn’t be the end of the world… so that is exactly what I did..
When i finally returned I felt more energized, more focused and ready to conquer the world!
Whether your goal is weight loss, career, or trying to juggle fitness, career and family the formula is all the same when you’re facing burn out.. Leave it all aside, and come back when your ready to face it once again…
In the world of fitness this is actually a natural phenomenon, but not many people in the everyday health industry speak about it. This is because with growing numbers of sedentary behavior, fitness professionals such as myself are so worried about getting you to your minimum daily exercise quotas, we forget to mention that breaks are an important part of your fitness regime.
Natural cycles in sport and fitness are known as Periodization. Used in most sport and physical training, it involves cycling your fitness program from different phases of difficulty. There is always one cycle that involves active rest from anywhere to a few weeks to a month…Even athletes understand that REST IS CRUCIAL TO AVOID BURN OUT AND STAY ON TOP OF YOUR GAME!
Here’s the catch.. there’s a formula to active rest.. and this same formula applied to the utmost of burn outs in absolutely anything in life whether it’s weight loss or career.
Following this formula is a great way to rejuvenate your passion, increase clarity and and get energized .. give it a try:
1. Set Your Timeline:
When you first feel the burnout you don’t even want to think about coming back and facing things again. So make this the last thing you do before you give up on your goals temporarily.
By setting a date when you reassess your goals you’re less likely to give up forever and leave it all behind ( a common occurrence with burnout).
If you get to that date and re-asses only to find out your goals have changed, then great! Your passion has sparked in a new more fulfilling direction and you know where to go from there.
If you still feel passion for your old goal but don’t feel ready to face it again, then set a new date to reassess once again.
2. Do Whatever You Want:
The whole reason burn out occurs is because of the huge amount of restrictions we place on ourselves and the constant pressure and passion needed to complete them. So, for the first few days, or even a few weeks do whatever the heck you want and do it without guilt.
For weight loss, this doesn’t meant you’ll binge 24 hours 7 days a week, but it does mean you’ll enjoy yourself without feeling the restrictions of guilt. If that includes a bowl of ice cream or a glass of wine, then go for it! this is your reward for making it as far as you did.
3. Enjoy Active Rest:
For weight loss and fitness enthusiasts your body might be sore and the idea of lifting weights or exercising just turns you off completely. So don’t workout.. at least don’t exercise like you used to. Choose new and exciting activities that get you moving, but without restrictions. Perhaps you’re on vacation and you go snorkeling, you walk on the beach or participate in a hike or simply take time to stretch sore and tired muscles.
If you’re burnt out on career, active rest still applies to you.
Instead of thinking of your career and where you’re going. Your active rest involves thinking about YOU and who you are. Most times when focusing on a career goal, we lose track of who we really are. Some of our burn out might be that we’re chasing a goal that no longer fits our sense of self, our true desires or our pull…. It’s time to reassess. Ask yourself what makes you happy, what gives you passion and what personal goals you want in life.
Just make sure to keep your career separate and focus on the sensations that you want to achieve.
4. Sleep On It:
The dedication and hard work it takes to completely any task usually comes with sleepless nights and long hours. It’s time to take care of you.
The best time to ditch your goals is when vacation is approaching. This gives you the perfect opportunity to sleep longer hours, take naps and rejuvenate. You cannot have clarity if you’re sleep deprived. It’s that simple…
If you’re unable to take vacation due to career or family obligations, try going to be 1 hour early. If you have kids ask your significant other to wake up with the kids for your specific “time off” timeline. Make sure to mention that you’ll return the favor once your week or month is up.
Absolutely everyone needs to ditch their goals from time to time… In fact whether it’s this goal, or whether your goal has formulated into something brand new, it will give you the power achieve your desires with a new found rejuvenation, with greater clarity, and an ignited passion..
After years of using this formula myself, I have successfully remained in the health and fitness field for almost 10 years. My weight might fluctuate, my fitness and career goals might change, but I always find that passion to drive me forward once again.