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How to recognize and cope with burnout at home

How to recognize and cope with burnout at home

The stress of life can quickly turn into burnout, which can seriously affect your mental health and well-being. So, what is burnout exactly? This common condition is described as a feeling of extreme mental and/or physical exhaustion resulting from feeling too much pressure or feeling overwhelmed and unable to perform. If you're experiencing burnout, you may notice a range of symptoms, including fatigue or depression.

While the demand for a successful career is a common cause of burnout, people may also suffer for other reasons, including caring for a child, elderly parent, or sick or disabled family member. 

Academic burnout is also common, as many college and high school students feel constant pressure to perform and achieve to their family's expectations. Frustration and lack of motivation in students are two common signs that they're dealing with academic burnout. Entrepreneurs and business owners can suffer from a loss of motivation that eventually affects their performance.

Even those who work from home can feel burnout, mainly due to trouble finding a good work-life balance.

This guide has some tips to help you recognize the signs of burnout at home and ways you can cope with it effectively for better health and wellness.

How to Deal with and Prevent Burnout

Before you learn how to deal with burnout, it's important to be aware of the signs. Here are some common symptoms that are associated with burnout:

  1. Frequently feeling tired, drained, or fatigued regardless of the time of day.
  2. Common and frequent headaches, muscle pain, or changes in sleep and eating habits.
  3. Lack of motivation and feeling trapped, helpless, or defeated.
  4. An increasingly negative outlook and loss of motivation.
  5. Feeling detached from friends, family, and the world as a whole.
  6. Lack of enjoyment and a decreased sense of satisfaction or accomplishment.
  7. Avoiding responsibilities or extracurricular activities, isolating from others.

These are just some of the most common signs of burnout. Now, let's take a look at how to deal with it and how you may be able to prevent it altogether.

Eat a Healthy Diet and Get Regular Exercise

Diet Tips

  1. Eat a healthy, well-balanced diet to help keep your mood and energy levels stable.
  2. Avoid eating sugar and refined carbs that can cause a crash later in the day.
  3. Try to keep your caffeine consumption, unhealthy fats, and foods with preservatives to a minimum.
  4. You can also supplement your diet with foods rich in Omega-3 fatty acids like nuts, seeds, and fish for a mood boost.
  5. Avoid smoking and drink alcohol in moderation.

Exercise Tips

  1. Participate in a few activities every day to get your body moving. You can start by taking a walk in the mornings or evenings at your nearest park.
  2. You can try some yoga classes at home and follow some guided meditation sessions on YouTube.
  3. You can sign up for swimming classes or do some swimming at the local pool. If you want to stay home, you could always purchase one of those above-ground pools.
  4. You can try running or your hand at a marathon event.
  5. You can sign up for dance classes like hip-hop or try your hand at some Latin flavor with salsa and bachata classes.
  6. Create your own DIY home gym or workout corner so you can do workouts at home. You can add some interlocking tiles to create gym flooring and install a music system or bring a TV into the space to make workouts more fun and enjoyable.
  7. You can purchase a smaller bench press set to lift weights in a comfortable environment like your garage.
  8. There are these great pull-up bars that you can assemble and put on a door frame if you are thinking of a workout corner.
  9. Designate a space in your home where you can use workout equipment like a treadmill, elliptical or stationary bike in a family room or spare bedroom.

You don't need a complete home gym to enjoy working out at home. A simple place reserved just for you, and some daily exercise can do wonders for your mental and physical health. Physical activity is a fantastic aid for people suffering from depression and anxiety.

Indoor and Outdoor Activities to Help You Deal with Burnout

Taking part in some fun activities can make coping with burnout easier. Here are some exciting suggestions for indoor and outdoor activities.

Outdoor Activities

Connecting with nature and spending time outside is a great way to reconnect with the world around you and unplug from technology. Some studies have shown that spending time in nature can do wonders to lower your stress and help you feel calmer and more relaxed. You don't have to do rigorous exercise to enjoy being outdoors. Here is a small creative list that you maybe never thought of actually doing. 

  1. Try bird watching to see how many different species of birds you can find. There are a lot of local societies that you can connect with and build new relationships with.
  2. Hiking or hitting a local nature trail is great since you can birdwatch and also get a bit of exercise at the same time. All the states have amazing hiking trails.
  3. Biking outdoors is also a great way to get outside. This is also a fantastic way to start a new hobby with friends or family.
  4. Go camping with some friends and family. This can be a bit of a small road trip.
  5. Head out on a fishing trip. Fishing is a fantastic hobby since you can do fly fishing or you can do some good old traditional fishing by the lake and chat.
  6. One of the most relaxing outdoor activities is to do a little backyard gardening to reconnect with nature. You can start a veggie garden or do some native flower planting that is helpful to our environment.

Indoor Activities and Tips

Slow down and unwind! Simple indoor activities like a fun hobby or baking can help you slow down and relax. These activities also get your mind off work, family, or school-related stress. Designate a part of your home to work on your hobby or arts and crafts. DIY the area by adding a craft table or easel and some storage for all of your paints, sewing items, or whatever craft you're going to try out.

  1. You can go full artistic, and you can set up a special art studio for painting or pottery. Choose a room with plenty of space and lots of natural light.
  2. Create your own craft room so you can start knitting. You can even get one of those awesome rocking chairs.
  3. A pottery hobby is another great way to get creative, but for this, you would have to buy a pottery wheel.
  4. If you're planning to do some baking, set up a baking station at home where you can store all of your special tools, ingredients, and bakeware together.
  5. You could also try your hand at candle-making. They do sell candle-making kits on amazon.

Make Time for Rest and Relaxation

One of the best ways to deal with burnout is to carve out some time for proper rest and relaxation. Here are some ways that you can practice self-care to help you prevent the effects of burnout or help you cope with it effectively.

Some professions, in particular, are more prone to burnout, due to hectic work environments and schedules, such as those in the medical field, experiencing burnout as a nurse, is sadly common, which is pivotal, that if you're in a profession that is prone to burnout, to seek help and education to prevent it, or treat it.

Get Proper Sleep

  1. Adopt healthy sleeping habits like going to bed and getting up at the same time every day. Make sure you're getting at least 6-8 hours of sleep per night whenever possible.
  2. Optimize your bedroom for better sleep by keeping sunlight out with room-darkening curtains or blinds, using a ceiling fan, and enjoying soft, comfortable bedding that helps you feel relaxed and calm.
  3. Buy a new mattress that will give your body the support it needs based on your sleep position (back, stomach, or side).
  4. Don't forget to make sure you're using the right pillows. You can go the extra mile by buying a memory foam pillow.
  5. Certain products like eye masks, earplugs, and noise machines can also help you get better sleep. Look for various items that will make getting a great night of sleep easier for you.
  6. Use soft, warm lighting in your bedroom to help you feel sleepy. Install wall sconces or use table lamps by your bedside so you can enjoy reading a book without having to get back up to turn the light off.
  7. Some experts recommend not watching tv right before bedtime.
  8. Reading a book may be a better option than looking at your Facebook before you close your eyes.


  1. A few minutes of daily meditation can help to reduce stress and help you cope with burnout. Learn a few breathing techniques so that you can practice meditation at home, at work, and anywhere you go. You can try several breathing methods until you find the best technique for you.
  2. Design a DIY meditation room or yoga space at home. Fill the room with beautiful houseplants, use scented essential oils to help you relax, and make sure that the space is located in a quiet area where you won't be disturbed.
  3. Choose soft, calming colors for your meditation area to help your mind relax. Add a yoga mat or a soft area rug to the floor so you can meditate or do some yoga comfortably.
  4. Listen to relaxing music, add some crystals to the room, or burn some scented candles or incense to help set the mood.

Practice Good Self-Care

Taking care of yourself is one of the best ways to prevent burnout. Set aside some time just for you, where you can simply relax and pamper yourself or do the things you love.

  1. Have a nice spa day at home and enjoy a luxurious warm bubble bath. Play relaxing, calming music while you enjoy your at-home spa day.
  2. Set up your bathroom to have a DIY spa experience at home by using candles or essential oils, and stock your bathroom with luxurious products like bubble baths and body oils.
  3. Bring some beautiful artwork or green houseplants into the bathroom to help it feel more like a spa. Splurge on a comfy pair of slippers or an ultra-soft, plush bathrobe.
  4. Give yourself a manicure or pedicure and just enjoy doing something for yourself without any obligation to anyone else. You can always choose to go get one done at your favorite place.

Remember to Unplug

Today's world demands that we're constantly connected. Learn how to do a "digital detox" to help you unplug. This can include going outside and connecting with nature without your phone or simply limiting screen time.

Spend more time with your friends and family in person to feel more connected with the people you love, reduce social networking on screens and increase it in person.

You can download special apps that will help you unplug. You can also try a screen time tracker like Moment that shows you how much time you spend connected to your smartphone each day. An app called Freedom blocks access to certain apps to help you stay productive so you can free up time for other things later. The Offtime app lets you disconnect entirely by helping you balance your use of digital devices more effectively.

You can also consider online therapy. Nowadays, thanks to technology, you can also access treatment from the comfort of your own home. Venting and getting professional help can improve your outlook and give you a better perspective on a personal approach you can take to address feeling burnout.

Originally posted by Denisse Garcia on