The challenge of burnout (and great podcasts by Dr Andrew Huberman and Dr Rangan Chatterjee)

Burnout is something I am currently seeing a lot of as a coach (and as a therapist). Maybe this is due to world events (e.g. politics, post pandemic aftermath, cost of living crisis). Perhaps lifestyle factors are a contributing factor (sub-par diets, incessant smart phone scrolling, consumption of ever miserable news). I'm sure these are all interlinked; we engage in behaviours to numb out and escape from the harsher realities and stresses of life.

I list burnout on my website as something that potentially brings my clients to coaching. It can creep on us insidiously and can adversely affect the quality of our life, our physical and emotional health and our relationships.

This morning I listened to a great podcast episode on burnout by Dr Rangan Chatterjee. He speaks so much sense about what many of us know about the importance of lifestyle factors and the impact of our choices around these on our physical and emotional well-being. He presents it in a non patronising, accessible way. He gets it. He cites examples from his own life where he has had struggles with managing priorities. I highly recommend you listen to it if you, or anyone close to you, seems to be showing some of the signs of burnout which Dr Chatterjee lists thus:

  • Disconnection from people in your life
  • Flattened emotions
  • Emotional exhaustion
  • Lack of creativity
  • Inability to gain pleasure from the usual things
  • Deterioration in self care habits
  • Physical exhaustion

Dr Chatterjee goes on to give advice on how to manage burnout; which steps we can take to put the brakes on and reunite with our mojo. 

There are some great podcasts around; I am a huge fan of The Huberman Lab. It's absolutely my number one go-to when I want to deep dive into issues around health and wellbeing. No doubt I will share some of Dr Andrew Huberman's gems more specifically in a blog post at a future stage. In terms of this topic I highly recommend his podcast episode Managing Stress and Anxiety.  There is some incredibly useful information, not just on lifestyle issues but also on research on nootropics and adaptogens. I often forward pertinent links such as this one to clients:

In terms of coaching; setting structure, goals, focus, and accountability regarding the management of prioritising different areas of ones life is something that some people elect to do within the context of a coaching conversation. Like having a personal trainer for the psyche. One of the many reasons why I do what I do; facilitating meaningful conversations to help people get more of what they want from their life.

Please consult your GP if you are feeling burned out. It is important to rule out physiological issues such as thyroid problems, nutritional deficiencies, perimenopause and medication (eg birth control pill) which may be the underlying cause aside from or alongside lifestyle factors.