The One Where I Stop Being Burnt Out (Hopefully?)


Hello! If you aren’t already aware, I’m Lindsay, student editor-in-chief here at Women of Cincy. This past month, Kiersten implemented a new task for the residents. Every two weeks, we will be reading long-form news pieces or essays. The residents rotate who choose the piece and then we all chat about it, what we took away, how it relates to our craft, etc. As someone who misses reading all day everyday, I was thrilled. The first essay, chosen by Kiersten, was about millennials being the burnout generation. How serendipitous for someone like me.

I am drinking a much-needed glass of wine right now. Anyone else?

I graduate from U.C. in about 10 weeks. Yesterday I applied to 14 full-time jobs. Currently, I have somehow allowed myself to overcommit so much that I am working three jobs, taking a full load of classes, playing on the club water polo team, participating in my sorority – oh, and trying to sleep. I’ve recently had some relationships fall through the cracks because I barely have time to see or talk to my parents, siblings, and perfect baby niece – let alone my friends.

So to say the least, life is stressful right now. Job applications are terrifying. I’m 21, almost 22 years old, and I’m basically burning myself out. But this week I made a very important realization.

It was my own choices that caused my burnout.

I chose to work that much, without having a car. I chose to rejoin the water polo team. I chose the classes I took. I chose to continue being a member of my sorority. I chose all of this.

So what can I do? I can choose not to continue some of these. I can choose where to put my time and what to prioritize. I can choose which of these things are making me unhappy and nix them.

So often, we overbook, overcommit, and overwhelm ourselves to the point of anxiety, panic, and burnout. Why? Because we think we have to. We think we need every second of every day planned.

Guess what? Sometimes you need a break.

Self-care, baby! Draw yourself a warm bubble bath. Have a glass of wine. Do a face mask. Yes, I’m talking to all the men out there, too. Skin care is important. Go to the gym and hit the punching bag if that’s more up your alley. Whatever it is, bring yourself back down to earth and realize that in the grand scheme of things, having eight obligations when your schedule only really allows four isn’t going to help you.

For me, this means reminding myself what the big goal is:  exploring the world and building my career. If it’s not pushing to help me with that, then it’s time for a change!

So this month, I challenge you to put yourself first. It’s not easy to bring yourself out of a burnout - I’m still trying to figure it out. It’s definitnely more than putting on a face mask; it’s realizing what choices you have made that have lead to your burnout. Finding out how to adjust your mindset to make different choices in the future. For me, it was taking a couple things off my plate and not working three jobs. It was realizing that my happiness and mental (and physical) health was more important than making all the money I could.

So here I go, on my anti-burnout journey. I hope you do the same.  

Peace and blessings,