Fear and Burnout

fear and burnout

“FEAR AND BURNOUT”

“The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.” ~ FDR

 

  Think about that quote, it may seem a little redundant but if you think about it, what FDR was trying to say is that the idea or the thought of something can be more much more scary.  The mental construct, the fear that you have, is much worse than the actual event.

 

  One of the things I want to talk about with burnout and reference to burn out is that burnout is very draining and difficult to deal with, but it is something where the idea of changing or fixing something for your burnout I think is the thing that can be the most scary to people.  

 

Change is hard, change is scary. 

 

  Anything that will cause your body to switch into your amygdala and your brain stem functioning, your limbic system- that is something that will override any sort of cognitive biases or cognitive thoughts you can have.  Fear, desire, greed, hunger, all of those emotional components of the brain are much stronger than any sort of thoughts you can have.

 

TRAIN YOUR BRAIN: 

  You have to train yourself and train your body’s response to fear so that then you can take the actions that you need to take, not because you’re scared, but you’re acting in spite of fear.  I think that’s what some people would say courage is. Courage isn’t having no fear, it’s acting in the face of fear. I think if you can control your body’s response to fear: for me, that typically is breathing exercises, and mentally rehearsing all the successes that I’ve had in similar situations; when that tissue situation occurs, your response is a calm response and a reasoned response. 

 

That way you have trained your body and your brain to not have that fear response. 

 

ACT: 

 

 Taking on a new position, or a new job, having a difficult conversation with an employer or a partner… those can all be very fear inducing. Acting on your own behalf and using your own personal agency, if you’ve not exercised those muscles, that can be fearful.

 

  So mentally rehearse the successes you’ve had mentally rehearse and maintain control of your bodily response to fear and move towards the things that are going to get you better.

 

That’s what I can suggest today. I hope that’s helpful.

 

Burnout is treatable, burnout is recoverable. So remember, always burn out recovery is for you.

 

~Jeff Moody, MD

 

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