Five Easy Ways to Prevent Burnout

Categories Lifestyle

Feeling exhausted at work? These tips might solve your problems.

Find your purpose

It’s easy to feel stressed when you don’t know where you’re going, or you don’t like what you’re doing. Rocking up to a job each day where you’d rather ram a Lego brick into your eye than answer another bloody email is demoralising, so embrace a career you’re passionate about pursuing and jot down a one-, five-, and ten-year plan to map out where you want to go. Climbing a ladder you actually want to climb, that’ll keep burnout at bay.

Prioritise tasks

Learn how to set clear goals, on a long- and short-term basis. Learn to schedule effectively — including making time for plenty of room to breathe — and stick to to-do lists that help manage your time. Rattling through those tasks also improves your self esteem, because every tick on that to-do list reminds you “yep, you’ve got this”, enhancing your sense of accomplishment and boosting your confidence to tackle challenges in the future.

Manage stress

Google ‘stress management techniques’ and there are more options out there than an unqualified naturopath could poke a dreamcatcher at. Mediation, breathing techniques, solid regular breaks, a stroll in the fresh air at lunchtime, keeping a stress diary for the super-neurotic . . . just find a way to unwind that works for you. Build a trustworthy support network that you can talk to and if you’re seriously struggling mentally, don’t be scared to reach out to a professional.

Take time out

If you wait until you reach the bottom of that to-do list, the next time you’ll put your feet up is the day you retire, so you need to consciously carve out time to unwind. There’s always something extra that needs doing — that pile of emails to churn through, that dinner with a client you’ve got to organise, that extra paper to read, those dishes when you get home — but you need a break. Unplug from technology and switch your brain off with a cup of tea and an episode of the Bachelor.


Exercise alleviates stress, so don’t allow a busy schedule to compromise your workout. It’s a non-negotiable to maintain good physical health to keep your mental health in good shape, too. Squeeze in a gym session at lunchtime, run home from work, set the alarm for a 6am gym session (and don’t press snooze), organise some social sport on the weekend — whatever keeps you motivated.