Burnout recovery tip 2: The nothing

This post was written by Megan on August 17, 2010
Posted Under: burnout and recovery

The power of blank - burnout cartoon

As mentioned in my '13 things' towards recovery from burnout, napping is one thing, just lying down is quite another. 

In the last post (Burnout recovery tip 1: The Helen Keller Approach) we talked about stripping back stimuli to give your senses a rest. This means going somewhere quiet for a little lie down. No books, no TV, no computer, no iPod, iPad or i-any-other-gadget. This is 'u' time, baby. 

Think womb.

And this leads nicely to our topic today.


Why what I've recommended might be hell

To those who are reasonably healthy, stripping back external stimuli (noises, smells and such) might sound quite nice. A little cocoon to cuddle oneself.

However, if you have uncomfortable or painful symptoms, applying this advice can prove a rather challenging experience. After all, those external distractions can stop us from thinking about how awful we feel. They have often saved me from going completely gaga (and, no, there's no 'Lady' in that particular picture).


So how do you handle 'the nothing'?

Here are some ways that have helped me:

  • Focus on your breathing
    It's an oldie and sounds boring (no apps required), but it works…without batteries. Breathe through your nose and into your stomach – not into your chest. Grab that snorkel and go deep.
  • Ask for rejuvenation
    Who are you asking? God, the universe, mother earth, your molecular structure, Big Daddy (whatever your preference). Me? I call him Warren. Having a 'team attitude' can take the pressure off this lonely experience, so asking for a leg up while lying down can move mountains.
  • Pat your hamster
    This ('G' rated) tip appears in the free e-book you get when you e-subscribe (What do you mean you haven't e-subscribed? Are you crazy? See right hand side column of the blog site to rectify this situation immediately). In short, imagine your body as a nervous little hamster that needs gentle patting and is lulled into a state of bliss purely by your nurturing presence. It's a disassociation and visualisation exercise. Except the tip in the e-book is much funnier. 

  • Stop worrying that you're not sleeping
    For us burnees, we equate having a lie down as a sleep opportunity. But if we are too keyed up to nod off, that's okay. Just lying down for a bit is helping your body immensely. Believe me.


Next post:

Grab your axe. We're gonna cull your friends.

Sound fun? You betcha!



This post was written by Megan Hills. Megan is a writer and cartoonist who believes in the power of… Find out more about Megan

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