Burn Baby Burn – Rocking a Good Burn OutBurn Baby Burn – Rocking a Good Burn OutBurn Baby Burn – Rocking a Good Burn OutBurn Baby Burn – Rocking a Good Burn Out
Bad day(s..and days) at the office -read the Joy of Burn Out by Dina Glouberman
And burn baby burn!!
Many of the choices we are offered, ranging from drink, drugs, food, shopping, television and video games to all-consuming jobs, are actually a range of different ways to dull our relationship to our lives. They can help us cover up our feelings about being unable to find our way to the life we believe we should have.
Burnout happens when your life has lost meaning within the structures that you have committed yourself to.
At some point, something changes either in us or in our situation or in the relationship between the two. Our heart goes out of our situation. There is a dawning awareness, often hardly conscious, that there must be another way, that it can’t be right to continue as we are.
The crucial question is: Do you really and truly want to be doing what you are doing or being what you are being? And if the answer is no: Are you trying to ignore what you are feeling and continuing to put pressure on yourself to do what you used to do or be what you used to be?
We can see this mixture of motives in the overdoing and over giving patterns many of us engage in. Such patterns are often called workaholism and co-dependence. These are considered addictions, and indeed we are dependent on the personal rewards we get from our over-responsibility. Yet they are very importantly different from other addictions. Although they are escape mechanisms, they don’t take the usual form of ingesting something, like alcohol, food or drugs, or engaging in a pastime, like gambling or shoplifting, or gaining something which may be at someone else’s expense, like power or sex. They are an escape from reality into a sense of responsibility for projects or people that we have a relationship with and to whom we give of ourselves.
What is trapping us? When we feel trapped, we often think that something external and tangible is trapping us –money, a pension, years of service, other people’s welfare. But if we look more deeply, we find we are hanging on for dear life to a picture we want to have of ourselves or of our world, which has been threatened by the change in the situation. All the burnout people I talked to could locate an image of themselves they didn’t dare let go which kept them going in situations that had otherwise lost their old meaning.
Once our experience of ourselves is disconnected from our actual self, the way we really are, and becomes dependent on what we do, give or achieve, we don’t really know who we are, or where we begin and end, or where our true being lies. Nothing matters but making it all right out there.
Yet those of us who are able to listen to relatively early symptoms and to reconnect to ourselves do not have to go through a full-blown burnout. It is a case of take time now or take a lot more time later.
If my soul were whispering, what would it be saying? Or try: If I dared to admit what I really wanted, what would it be? If I could wave a magic wand over this situation, how would it be?
Burnout has to do with our unwillingness to surrender –to our bodies, hearts and souls and to reality itself. Healing begins at the moment we do surrender.
Listen, listen, listen If we’ve burnt out, it is always the case that we have stopped listening to ourselves for long enough to ‘lose the plot’. When we wait, we also have to stop denying and take up listening again. Listening is food for our hungry soul.
Quotes taken from “The Joy of Burnout” by Dina Glouberman