If you’ve been feeling fatigued, anxious or forgetful lately, you’re not alone. Prolonged anxiety and stress are leading to higher rates of burnout, leaving millions feeling unmotivated and tired.
Recent reports have shown that nearly two-thirds of American workers are experiencing burnout during the ongoing pandemic. The average employee is taking less time off and working longer hours while working from home while still trying to find balance between their workload, their family and their personal life. It’s creating the perfect environment for burnout.
Burnout causes us to feel emotionally drained, unmotivated, fatigued and unable to concentrate at work. This has been one of the most common concerns from my patients over the last few months, and I experienced it myself during the height of the pandemic in March and April. As a physician with my own independent practice, Medicine 369, I was juggling volunteer work on the frontlines at hospitals in New York City, managing patient visits, and trying to keep up with my personal life. After a while, it felt like I hit a wall and suddenly I just couldn’t go any further. I knew I had to take a step back and recognize that for the first time in my life, I was burnt out. I knew I had to make changes and feel better.
In my medical practice, I focus on complimentary medicine with a focus on lifestyle and natural options that can improve health and well-being. If you’re feeling like I did with burnout, there are a few easy, natural options and lifestyle habits that can help.
- Be Kind to Yourself. With all the stress and unknowns we’re dealing with during the pandemic, recognize that it’s okay to feel burnt out. Particularly for Type A personalities, it can be difficult to accept this and to prioritize self-care, but it’s so important. Being kind to yourself and practicing self-care can include anything from taking time to watch your favorite TV show, connecting with friends and loved ones or even just making it a priority to focus on the positives in life. These may seem like small acts, but these shifts in perspective can help reset your thinking so you start to feel more positive too.
- Swap Out Caffeinated Beverages. When you’re feeling fatigued, it can feel instinctual to reach for an extra cup of coffee so you can be more alert. This can actually have the opposite effect because caffeine disrupts the sleep cycle. Even if you’re getting eight hours of sleep at night, caffeine can make it harder to achieve quality restful sleep, so you still wake up groggy and fatigued. I always recommend natural ways to improve your energy without compromising your sleep cycle. Swap your coffee for ingredients and supplements that support energy at a cellular level. I like supplements containing caffeine-free ingredients like Robuvit French oak wood extract for energy. Robuvit is an antioxidant shown in years of research to support the mitochondria in your cells for more energy and to reduce oxidative stress that can cause fatigue. It’s my go-to for burnout because there are studies showing Robuvit can reduce workplace burnout symptoms like fatigue by 43%.
- Cut Sugar Out of Your Diet. People often don’t realize the damaging effects that sugar has on our bodies. Processed sugar is shown to make us feel more sluggish, it affects our weight and blood sugar, and it can even cause your cells to age more rapidly. If you’re already feeling burnt out, look at your diet and make an effort to avoid sugary food options that can be affecting how you feel overall.