Exhausted, stressed and emotional – feeling frazzled isn’t limited to work. Take our quiz, compiled by Iona Russell, to find out if you need to make some lifestyle changes…
1. How are you feeling in yourself?
A Motivated and happy
B Sluggish and tired
C OK, nothing terrible to report
2. How would you describe your energy levels?
A I’m good to go most of the time
B I struggle to get up, or sleep well most of the time
C I experience regular dips
3. Do you sleep ok?
A I get a good seven to eight hours and feel great
B I struggle to get to, or stay asleep
C I get seven to eight hours, but it never feels enough
4. How is your diet?
A I eat a balanced diet
B I live on coffee and eat on the go
C I could probably eat a little better
5. How do you manage your time?
A I like to think I have a good work /life balance
B Sleep, work, eat, repeat
C I try to have a balance, but this is not always the case
6. Do you make time for yourself?
A Yes, I try to do something for me – I swim, got to the gym or read daily
B No, it’s difficult to fit it in and when I do, I just want to sleep
C It’s on my list
7. Let’s talk about meditation – Do you do it?
A Yes, I’ve adopted it as part of my selfcare routine
B No, I don’t have time and when I try, I can’t empty my mind
C It’s on the list – I do it sometimes
8. Do you enjoy your job?
A Yes, I’m happy in my work
B No, there are too many deadlines, or I’m always too busy
9. In your place of work, do you have a good team or support network?
A Yes, I have great friends and confidants in, and out of work
B No, I don’t feel I can voice how I am feeling in a work environment
C Yes, I have friends, but I don’t talk to them about work situations
10. Who would you normally go to if you needed to talk?
A I have a great support network, anything goes
B I tend to manage my issues myself – I’m not really a sharer
C I have friends, but I’m selective in what I share
11. What would you do if you weren’t afraid?
A I’m not afraid – I am truly happy
B I would leave my job/relationship – change my life
C I would travel more or take more time for myself
Now, count up how many A’s, B’s and C’s you ticked to reveal your results…
If you ticked mostly A’s…
Gold star, well done you. Your outlook and life seem pretty balanced, and your risk of burnout is likely minimal. Keep taking that time to yourself and ensuring that you get that switch-off time. Try adding in some diversity to your activities and do something you’ve never done before, or an activity you’re curious about trying. Variety is the spice of life!
If you ticked mostly B’s…
You’re burnt to a crisp – or not far off! My recommendation to you is to take some time out and rest. Whether it’s deadlines, social calendar or family commitments, the endless demands on our time can wait, and the priority needs to be you. Accept that you must stop. Surrender into the burn and take time to work out what it is you really want to do. If your job has become all consuming, then this is a wake-up call for you to reprioritise your health. Keep your to-do list manageable and short, thinking about what you can accomplish today. Having a huge to-do list can become overwhelming and set us up to fail and to feel that we never get anything done. You don’t need to throw all your responsibilities away, just break them down into bite-size, actionable steps. Make sure you’re stepping away from screens an hour before bed and keep your phone out of the bedroom. You need some radical self-care, so be creative and carve out some me-time. You can achieve this by sitting in your car for five minutes before you get home or arrive at work, or by getting up five minutes earlier – it all adds up. By creating space for yourself, you will get more done. Slow down and hit factory reset.
If you ticked mostly C’s…
Consider this your amber warning. I’d say you were on the fence – not quite at burnout, but also not living your best and fullest life. Who wants to be vanilla when we can be mint chocolate chip? I would use this time to ask yourself some of those difficult questions you may be avoiding, perhaps using a journal to write down your answers. What would it take to have you living your best and fullest life? Make a list of the things that you enjoy, even if you’ve not done them in a while – these can be things from the past and present. Now, make a list of things you’re curious about, things you’d maybe like to try but haven’t. What do you notice about these lists? Is there a common theme or thread? Start to add these activities into your daily life, especially the ones you’re curious about. You never know what gold you will uncover.
Iona Russell is a life fulfilment coach and cheerleader of meditation and mindfulness practices. Iona has proven her own philosophy, having overcome personal struggles with depression, stress and confidence. She truly believes everyone can get out of their ‘funk’ and get to a place of purpose, passion and joy. Find out more at ionarussell.com.