Do you ever wish that you could stop time? Or that you could turn down the volume of the world, even for a moment?
Like many of us, pandemic life has left me in the confines of my home. My kids and I are often in the same teeny tiny space and I’m not sure when kids are supposed to learn volume control, but mine sure haven’t. The noise in my head often matches the noise in my environment. Managing that overstimulation takes a lot of energy, and burnout is REAL. Burnout sucks the joy right out of everything, am I right?
When I’m especially irritable, low, or overwhelmed, I try to find a way to hit pause. When I no longer find joy in my family or work, that break becomes necessary or else my mind will dip into dark places. I don’t usually have time for long walks on the beach or to disappear into bubble baths. I can often manage a 5-minute tap out, though, and I do whatever I can to make it happen. I’ll put on some Paw Patrol and curl up on the couch with my eyes closed. I’ll pass the kids to my husband (even if that means interrupting his work day) spread out on my bed and look out the window. When I come back from those 5 minutes, everything seems more manageable and I can usually go back to enjoying life.
Whether the labour you are doing is mental or physical, paid or unpaid, burnout is real. If your work requires hourly deliverables, ask yourself (and whoever is nagging you) if 5 sweet minutes of tranquility will curb your productivity. I would argue that it may actually increase it.
Me taking 5 minutes can be a pain in the ass for those who need to give me those 5 minutes. Sometimes, I even wish I didn’t need that break but that just isn’t how it works. In pilates, I take a 10 second break after a minute of double leg lifts. Without that break, I wouldn’t be able to move onto the next exercise. I apply that rule to every aspect of my life.
Nothing magical happens, but those 5 minutes can remind me that although I’m in the middle of an exhausting chapter, I can still feel joy.
Thank you for reading.