Ever have one of those days
- You sit on your desk and your mind is completely blank?
- You know what you are supposed to do but you are just unable to even lift a finger?
- When all you feel like doing is NOTHING — just nothing.
- When what normally would take you 10 minutes — seem to take forever?
- You just don’t feel like doing anything? Absolutely nothing? Like I sincerely mean NOTHING…..
Well, welcome to the “Burn Out Phase” a phase, a moment, a situation in your life where your body, your mind and your spirit are not at all in sync. And the worst part of this phase is that you cannot switch it ‘off’ or just solve it like your other problems. It is something you really may or may not how to handle.
If you know how to handle it — great.
But if you do not know how to handle it — then, this article is for you.
Take my case for example, I am a Productivity Obsessed, Target Driven, Result Oriented Coach. I do not tolerate sub-standard work. I do not believe that there are any ‘down-days’. And I surely never accept excuses.
But right now AT THIS VERY MOMENT — I am myself going through this moment.
You may not believe this — but for someone who can type out more than 2,000 words per hour, I am unable to complete this one article.
I woke up at 6:17 pm feeling a bit ‘not-so-good’, drank my routine wakeup espresso drink, and then after I sat down at my work station — it hit me — I was experiencing a burn out.
I struggled to keep my focus, I tried my level best to do ‘some work’. I even tried to even remind myself of my goals, my dreams and my vision in life.
Nothing worked out.
So what started off at 7pm onwards…well even now at 1:47 am remains unfinished.
I opened the browser, typed a few words.
And then blank.
Tried to do it again and then distraction.
Sat down some time later and wanted to watch a youtube video.
Opened the browser again and then felt hungry.
Now even though these are normal occurrences that someone with ADHD may go through — today was kind of to the extreme. And I knew I was fighting a losing battle. Even now I am looking at the screen wondering, “how do I complete this article?”
It just one of those days.
So what do you do when such a moment occurs?
Well these are the few steps I recommend:
- SWITCH OFF MODE
Take a complete and total break from work. Switch off everything whatever it is you are supposed to do. Avoid taking up any of those normal important day to day tasks which require intense focus or attention. If you can delegate it — go ahead and delegate it.
- DO ANYTHING BUT WORK
Make sure that you give yourself a day to do everything other than work. It can be fun stuff, boring stuff, stilly stuff or even non-productive stuff. Like for example — I will do everything from cleaning my house, to going for a walk, to getting a massage, washing the dog, doing the laundry, checking out a movie, sometimes checking out 3 movies back to back, playing video games, sorting out my desk — it can be anything and everything BUT work
- EXTENDED M = Meditation.
Where normally I would do say 5 minutes, now I would do 30 minutes.
- EXTENDED E = Exercise
Where normally my exercise would be 10 minutes and finished. Now it would be 30 minutes of slow enjoyable sessions or maybe even an extended walk.
- EXTENDED B = Breathing
Where normally, I would breath deeply for 10 minutes (inhale oxygen really deep and release), I would do it for 30 minutes (while walking).
- EXTENDED R = Relaxation
Here you can insert anything from sleeping to getting a massage to doing whatever it is you love that helps you relax (for some people it is spending time with their children). If normally you do it for an hour, now go ahead and do 3 hours.
- EXTRENDED D = Detox
- Have you ever tried fasting for 3 days while eating nothing solid — just drinking water? I had done it for 8 days (I don’t recommend it)
- Have you ever tried not touching your phone or computer or logging into the internet for 7 days? I tried (this was even more tough)
- Have you ever tried locking yourself in a silent room or house for 24 hours all alone with no one and no body and not even any book or item? Not very easy thing to do
- SOMETHING NEW & CRAZY
I have always given myself the permission to do something crazy here. For example, I once purchased a brand new Samsung Note 8 and played around with it (not something I recommend frequently).
- I decided to remove all the clothes out and sort all of them out — including sell off or donate whatever I didn’t need.
- I rearranged my entire living quarters to see what difference it would make.
- I even went through all my contacts, friends list, desktop system and removed anything and everything I didn’t need.
- I once even gave all my tools (iMac, Mac Book Pro, iPad — all of them for a complete service & check up) just so that I wouldn’t be tempted to go back to work.
- I once booked a 3 day holiday and just took off without informing anyone.
Whatever it is you do try, the main focus should be to allow yourself to recharge, regroup, recuperate and reset your body and your mind. You are literally pushing yourself to do something you have never done before. And the goal is to click the RESET button so that everything goes back to normal.
Remember — just as our digital devices and our day-to-day machines need to rebooted and reset from time to time and sometimes even given for service to repair everything in it — the same goes for our body and mind. And that is the only way you will keep the things in your life surviving for the long run.
I for one know the importance of this because this is the only way I can succeed, survive and sustain for the long run.
Having said that, I can finally say — at 6:07am I finally completed the article. Took me 12 hours to get this &%#$@!% article done with!