The Slow Simmer of Burnout

by | Jan 18, 2019

As I shared in my article last week, Find your Inner Compass Retreat, life has been gigantic in the last year. My son’s wedding, the death of two of my dearest friends, three moves, and writing and publishing a book. There’s no victimhood here,  but what I had not fully understood was the toll it all would have on my life.

As a writer, I can work anywhere. That is the good and the bad news. Boundaries get blurry, even when I am most disciplined. But what surprised me was that even though I practice, teach, and live a life of self-awareness, I didn’t recognize the slow simmer of burnout creeping into my life. I noticed that my attention was scattered, my temperament was fragile, and that I was suffering from bone-draining weariness many days. But rather than listening to these symptoms and stopping, I simply managed them.

My self-care practice enabled me to get away with this for a while, but eventually, even my daily routines couldn’t pull me out of my energy deficit. I eat vibrant foods, live in nature, and enjoy loving relationships, and yet somehow I overlooked the fact that stopping, really stopping, was the only way to replenish the thirsty well of life.

Yesterday I was listening to this interview on NPR and checked in with how much the symptoms resonated with me, in particular how an energetic depletion had become the background music of this woman’s productive, highly functioning life.

I understand now that burnout has nothing to do with how productive we are. When we don’t recognize and respect exhaustion, we move into dangerous territory. We pull from physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual reserves that are not meant to support our daily life. Those reserves are just like the proverbial savings account that we draw on when the unexpected event happens. It is not there to support our daily needs but rather is an emergency fund.

There’s no shame in listening and heeding the call of burnout. In fact, it is a powerful act. Turning toward yourself and saying YES to leaving business behind for a short while gives you the chance to recover and act responsibly in your life.

The most profound healing happens for me on retreats. Lifting myself out of my day-to-day routine, to rest, share, sleep, breathe, interact with nature, and surround myself with other conscious beings–this is my elixir for recovery that revitalizes me at a cellular level.

In early February I partner with my dear friend Siri Bani to bring this type of retreat experience to you. We created Find Your Inner Compass retreat with a personal understanding of the slow simmer of burnout and how frightening it can feel when you don’t know how to recover your energy.

Allow us to support you in healing practices including Kundalini yoga, meditation, sound therapy, writing, art therapy, healing foods, elixirs, nature, and the amazing company of others on this path of self-love.

We invite you to join us on this journey.