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How Nature Helps Me Achieve Harmony

Today’s fast-paced world, finding a balance between work and personal life is essential to prevent burnout. I understand the pressures and relentless pace that can lead to burnout. However, I have found some strategies that help me mitigate these effects and maintain a healthy work-life balance.

During a recent trip, I spent time in a Dominican Republic rainforest. Immersed in nature, I observed the local culture where community members came together to work on buildings, such as individual houses and municipal gathering spaces. They moved slowly, with smiles on their faces, living on "island time." People played card games around tables outside, a stark contrast to the hustle and bustle of our typical 90-mile-an-hour lives.

For me, being in nature, especially near water, is a significant help in preventing burnout. The tranquility and beauty of natural surroundings can provide a much-needed escape from the stresses of daily life. Incorporating regular nature retreats into your schedule, whether it’s a walk in the park or witnessing a beach sunset, can have profound effects on your mental well-being. While I can’t just run off to the rainforest every time I encounter a challenge, I can step into a restroom and run cool water over my hands or leverage box breathing anywhere.

Recognizing Burnout

Understanding the telltale signs of burnout is. For me, the signs include persistent fatigue, a sense of dread about upcoming tasks, and irritability. Recognizing these signs early allows me to take proactive steps to address them.

 Strategies to Overcome Burnout

1. Gratitude and Vulnerability: A powerful defense against burnout is cultivating gratitude mixed with a bit of vulnerability. A few months back, I reached out on LinkedIn to a stranger with an impressive background in recruitment for technical roles. I wasn’t seeking a role but wanted their insight on my digital footprint and asked for a candid assessment.

This individual challenged me by asking where I saw myself in the next 15 years. Initially, I was unable to answer. However, after contemplation, I realized that my long-term vision involved being surrounded by trustworthy and respected people. This reflection helped me understand the importance of maintaining personal harmony and showing up as my authentic self. Authenticity naturally brings the best individuals for your support system. If someone doesn’t appreciate your authentic self, that is not negative; it is actually a blessing, a natural mechanism to weed out the negativity.

2. Sharing and Networking: The second insight from this interaction was realizing what was missing in my network—me. I had been so busy that I hadn’t shared my experiences with the people who matter the most. Leveraging my network more effectively by sharing information and encouraging each other can create a supportive community that helps prevent burnout. Again, I am so thankful for the amazing people who are always willing to exchange support.

3. Rest, Balance, Diet, and Exercise: Traditional methods such as getting adequate rest, maintaining a balanced diet, and regular exercise are foundational to preventing burnout. These practices support physical and mental health, making it easier to manage stress.

 Additional Tips

Setting Boundaries: Establish clear boundaries between work and personal life. This can mean setting specific work hours and sticking to them, as well as taking regular breaks throughout the day. Unfortunately, something I realized is that if you do not do this from the initial onset, it may be impossible to undo and re-calibrate. I would love to hear someone’s thoughts on this and tell me if you have successfully been able to re-calibrate boundaries with an organization.

Engaging in Hobbies: Pursuing hobbies and interests outside of work provides a creative outlet and helps recharge your energy. Creative energy release is extremely important and can be achieved in a variety of ways. If you’re not sure where to start, just begin doodling. As an anthophile, gardening is a therapeutic exchange of nurture rewarded with beauty that always offers philosophical insights.

Mindfulness and Meditation: Incorporating mindfulness and meditation into your daily routine may help manage stress and increase your resilience to burnout. Even with a few minutes a day, I notice a significant difference. Myth: you must be seated... nope, you can go for a walk and achieve the same state mentally. The (mental) stillness can also create a space for you to find what really drives you. What’s at your inner core can help you identify hobbies or interests that you otherwise would not hold the space for.

Seeking Support: Don’t hesitate to seek support from friends, family, or professional counselors when needed. Having a support system is crucial during challenging times.

These are just a few thoughts that I had that might help others.

Thank you for reading, and let me know if this helped or if you’d like to see additional notes or videos like this.

1 Comment

3 days ago

Excellent writing Cherokee!! Bravo!! I love it!

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