I’m the kind of person that loves action and to move fast while giving her best at everything.
But what seems to be the norm can turn against you when there’s too much of it.
I’ve been talking about burnout in the few years because I’ve been there.
What’s important to know about burnout is that it’s a stress that has not been correctly managed or relieved.
The good part is that it’s preventable.
The key stays in understanding your performance and recovery zones.
Your life should be a dance between these two.
THE PERFORMANCE ZONE
Your energy is high and positive when you’re in the performance zone. Things are working out for you. You meet the deadlines, you’re right on schedule, and at the end of the day, you may be tired but in a good mood.
That’s the zone where the action happens, where you create the results, and where you want to be most of the time to give your best.
But being constantly in the performance zone can make it difficult to switch off, relax, and engage in other important activities for your overall health and happiness.
THE RECOVERY ZONE
On the other hand, in the recovery zone, your energy is low but positive. It’s where you recharge to get back to the performance zone.
It’s a good zone if you know your limits and have the self-awareness to understand when to stop and switch off.
STRATEGIES FOR SWITCHING BETWEEN PERFORMANCE AND RECOVERY ZONE
The key to sustainable high performance and well-being is moving regularly and deliberately between the performance and recovery zones.
These are the zones you want to be moving around to avoid going into burnout, where you’ll feel exhausted and helpless.
Here’s some practical advice on how to switch between the performance and recovery zones effectively:
- Setting clear boundaries between work and non-work activities.
- Prioritizing exercising. Get your body moving to release stress and endorphins and find better solutions.
- Taking regular breaks during work hours, such as micro-breaks.
- Scheduling recovery time, such as vacations or weekends off.
- Practicing self-care activities such as deep breathing, massage, mindfulness, and hobbies.
- Getting enough sleep. 8 to 9 hours will do wonders.
- Seeking social support, such as talking to friends or colleagues, or professional help, such as a therapist or coach.
WHAT TO DO WHEN FINDING IT HARD TO FIND THE BALANCE BETWEEN THESE TWO ZONES
The common barriers to switching between these zones can look like feeling guilty for not performing, perfectionism, and lack of time.
Whenever you see yourself triggered by any of these barriers – and it happens to all of us – know that you have options for navigating them.
- Challenging negative beliefs and attitudes towards rest and recovery.
- Setting realistic expectations and goals for both performance and recovery.
- Asking for help and delegating tasks to others.
- Prioritizing your tasks and personal life at the same time.
- Seeking professional support. You don’t have to do this alone.
→ Your life should be a dance between the performance and recovery zones.
→ When you find it hard to switch between these two zones, check in with yourself and learn about what triggers you. Sit with it. Your future self will thank you.
→ Seek support.