So oftentimes, clients will say that they are too tired to go for a walk or to workout. However, a good refreshing and mind-clearing walk may be the perfect answer. When determining if you are fatigued, consider that there are two types of fatigue, emotional and physical. What is emotional exhaustion?
Emotional exhaustion can occur when someone experiences a period of excessive stress in their work or personal life. Emotional exhaustion can make you feel emotionally drained, overwhelmed, and fatigued. Emotional exhaustion can make a significant impact on your life, relationships, and behavior.
A variety of things and life events can contribute to emotional exhaustion. Going through a significant life change, divorce, death of a loved one, being a caregiver, having or raising children, juggling multiple tasks at once such as family and work obligations, or living with a chronic medical condition can all cause emotional exhaustion.
With emotional exhaustion, you may also experience changes in your mood. Being more pessimistic or cynical, anger or irritability, anxiety, depression, lack of motivation, or hopelessness are examples of mood changes that can occur with emotional exhaustion. It is important to reach out to a healthcare professional if you feel anxiety, depression, or thoughts of self-harm.
Other symptoms of emotional exhaustion include difficulties concentrating, forgetfulness, lack of imagination or loss of memory. Sleeping problems and maintaining a regular sleep pattern is also a sign of emotional exhaustion. Changes in appetite, headaches, heart palpitations and weight loss or weight gain are some common physical changes you may experience with emotional exhaustion. You may feel less able to connect with others, low self-esteem, experience poor work performance or feel socially withdrawn from others when feeling emotionally exhausted.
Those who can be at higher risk for emotional exhaustion include people with high work demands, those who work long hours, those who feel a lack of control at work, individuals who strive for perfection, those who are socially isolated or with limited social support.
What can you do if you are emotionally exhausted?
▪ Make reducing stress a priority. Take on fewer demands, delegate, and ask for help.
▪ Eat a balanced diet rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean sources of protein.
▪ Limit how much alcohol you drink and try to avoid tobacco smoking.
▪ Prioritize sleep routine by going to bed at the same time and getting 7 – 9 hours of sleep each night.
▪ EXERCISE for at least 30 minutes a day, almost every day of the week.
▪ Work on maintaining a good work-life balance.
▪ Practicing mindfulness can reduce anxiety and depression and improve mood. Try meditation, yoga, breathing exercises, keeping a journal, or walking in nature.
▪ Connect with others, friends and social supports.
▪ Work with a mental health professional if lifestyle changes aren’t helping to treat your emotional exhaustion.