Since the Covid-19 pandemic hit last year, huge aspects of our lives have been affected, forcing our routines and processes to change. Days begin to feel like weeks and months can feel like years, with no confirmed endpoint in sight.
As the UK navigates its way through a third lockdown, unpredictability and uncontrollability is causing heightened frustration, and an increasing percentage of the population is currently suffering from pandemic fatigue as a result of this, which can eventually lead to pandemic burn out.
We’ve compiled four steps to help combat the widespread feelings of fatigue and burnout during this time, to ensure health and mental wellbeing are top priorities.
Identify what the symptoms of burnout are
Working from home stress and the pressures of home-schooling can lead to a lack of motivation, increased loss of memory and poor sleep – which are the symptoms of burnout and should not be taken lightly. Working during a pandemic with limited options of enjoyment outside of work can leave you feeling overwhelmed, and you may not realise that what you’re feeling is down to pandemic burnout. Understanding and addressing your feelings can be the first step in finding ways to improve your mood.
Structure your day
Creating a routine and allowing time for frequent breaks can help improve organisation and reduce overwhelming feelings. Making an effort to get dressed in the morning can help you start the day with a positive mindset, and incorporating at least 30 minutes of exercise into your day can do wonders for physical and mental health. Research shows, those who exercise regularly have a 30% lower risk of depression.
This step is often easier said than done, but is important to avoid burning out. Take the time to switch off from work at the end of the day. When remote working, try to move to a different area of your home to ensure there is a change of environment and a chance to relax.
Prioritising self-care, pamper sessions, reading a book or watching your favourite shows on Netflix, can make all the difference when trying to disconnect, and getting a good night’s sleep is also very important to allow the body to reset, improving mood and immune system health.
Get help when you need it
Don’t be afraid to reach out to those closest to you when the pressures of the pandemic become too much, they may be able to help in more ways than one. Receiving help with childcare within government guidelines may help you feel less stressed, by giving you more time, and speaking to an employer if you feel overstretched with your workload, may mean better structures can be put in place to help create a healthier work/life balance.
When feeling cooped up or cut off from usual hobbies and socialising, life can seem very difficult, so we hope you find these tips useful in helping to prevent pandemic burnout, and remember that your mental health and wellbeing is very important.