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Burnt Out or Feeling Stuck? Here’s the difference.

There ‘s a huge difference between being “burnt out” and feeling “stuck”.

FEELING STUCK

Feeling stuck is a signal from your body, mind and spirit. The same way hunger or thirst is a signal. It means you need something.

When you’re stuck you need personal growth. Your life has gotten boring, stagnant, or predictable.

Feeling stuck comes from losing a connection with yourself because you are so bogged down with your day to day life.

You’re busy getting things done and you’re no longer learning anything new. That monotony makes you feel tired, complacent, and stuck.

BEING BURNT OUT

Burn out happens when you’ve had relentless demands or never-ending pressure put on you. Your nervous system is taxed and on edge.

You feel physically, cognitively, and emotionally exhausted, making it difficult to focus or feel good about yourself, your job, or even your personal life.

Being burnt out comes from chronic stress that hasn’t been managed correctly. This kind of continual stress leads to heightened cortisol levels and adrenal fatigue, furthering the cycle of making you feel tired and spread thin.

According to Psychology Today, one of the main signs of burnout is chronic fatigue. You feel physically and emotionally exhausted no matter how much sleep you get, how many breaks you take, or how much caffeine you consume… you just don’t feel like your regular self or get a boost of energy no matter what you do.

You feel disengaged and uninspired.

Instead of feeling invested, your feel detached which leads to losing your connection to yourself and the pride you used to have in your work.

You start to feel uninterested in things that normally bring you joy.

You feel like you might collapse if one more thing happens unexpectedly or gets added to your plate.

You find you’re more easily distracted or feel like you can’t get into the groove of work, even with tasks that you usually enjoy or love to do.

Solutions to feeling stuck:

  1. Get intentional about growing as a person.
    Pursue something NEW that interests you (sign up for a class, learn a second language, try a new hobby, or re-engage with a project that interests you).
  2. Spend time on things and with those that matter to you most.
  3. Celebrate every win!
    Small wins, my friend, small wins. They’re what keep you going. Do a happy dance, high-five yourself in the mirror. So what’s it going to be for you? Celebrate the the little stuff – because all those small wins will become a BIG sweet success.
  4. Keep moving forward!
    You must keep pushing on, even when you feel uninspired or down on yourself or just plain stuck.

    These are the moments that make or break you. Those “break” moments? That’s when I want you to cling a little tighter. Most people will quit when things get tough. Days will be filled with doubt and fear, questioning and exhaustion. But do you know that else they will be filled with? JOY! So much joy.

    Next time you feel uninspired, move through it anyway. Just a tiny bit of momentum can move you from uninspired to feeling ready to jump in again.

    There will be moments when you are digging in and it feels confusing. There will be days when you question if you are really cut out for this. Or maybe the ideas are just not flowing. Don’t quit! Keep moving forward.

    Progress not perfection, my friend. It doesn’t matter what pace you move at, just keep moving forward, okay? Forward is forward, that’s all that matters.
  5. Have some dang fun!
    When life gets too serious, your thoughts tend to get heavy. You are built to have fun. You are built to feel connected. So, if you’re in a “fun-drought”, plan something exciting to do this weekend. Not only will you get a burst of energy every time you think about it coming up, but you’ll get a second burst of energy from the experience itse.

Remember, you are a happy, passionate, and confident person at your core. Give yourself a break to reset or to start growing in new ways again. It’s the only way to get reconnected to yourself again.

Solutions to being burnt out:

  1. Talk to your family and friends for support.
  2. Self-care! Focus on getting sleep, good nutrition, exercise, social connection, meditating, journaling, and enjoying nature.
  3. Set boundaries with your colleagues, clients, and even family members for how much you’re willing to take on.
  4. Rest. This is different from getting sleep. This is about giving yourself a break.

    Studies show that rest can increase your productivity and efficiency. So if you need to lean on that fact to grant yourself the time and space, do it! If you can, take some intentional time away from work or at the very least create boundaries and get some accountability around holding strong to them.

    Maybe you can take a week, or a long weekend or an afternoon off. Maybe it’s as simple as shutting down email and getting off your screens.

    Rest takes work, especially if your tendency is to be working all the time. For me, resting takes conscious effort but it’s worth it. I have to remind myself to slow down, to not be productive and to do things for the sake of play.

THE BIG PICTURE

You can’t go on like this. Taking a break isn’t a reward. It’s your right. If there was ever a time to find the courage to ask for time off or to take it – it’s right now.

Whether you’re stuck or burnt out, you MUST tune into what you’re feeling and give yourself what you need.

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