In 2020, it often felt like the days blurred together in a repetitive haze.
With the global pandemic in full swing, mental illness spiked to a level we had never seen before, and our typical workday routines were upended to allow for working from home.
It was thanks to this, that many of us set forth a date, both consciously and subconsciously, for change.
Jan 1, 2021.
Side note: Here's how to combat burnout. Post continues below.
On the best of years, New Year's Day comes with a hell of a lot of *positive* expectations.
But in 2021 in particular, you may have fallen victim to dreaming of big changes, when, in reality we are still in the middle of a pandemic with no clear end in sight.
This combined with a return to work, no real holidays and a few weeks of little progress on our new year's goals, the potential for early year burnout is high.
So, we had a chat to clinical psychologist, Dr. Amanda Gordon, to work out the six strategies you can use to keep momentum and avoid burnout on your return to work in 2021.
Wait, wait, wait: What is burnout?
Well, According to the World Health Organisation (WHO) burnout is a syndrome that results from chronic workplace stress that hasn't been managed.
You may experience symptoms like energy depletion, irritability, exhaustion, negativity or cynicism related to your job, and decreased productivity.
You can be particularly vulnerable to burnout at the bookends of the year, thanks to the added pressure that can come with these periods.
So, how can you avoid burnout?
1. Get outside.
Dr. Amanda Gordon suggests that a return to work doesn't have to come with a hard shift from holiday mode to work mode.
"This year has in many ways, felt like a continuation of the previous year," she said.
"Although many of us did have a holiday period, there has been little change with working from home and then holidaying from home.
"That means the feeling will, for many, be: 'I'm still here, I'm still doing the same thing'."
To combat this, Dr. Gordon suggests making the most of the Australian summer where possible, by ending or starting your workdays with outdoor walks, swims or catchups.
"Take advantage, if you can, of the rest of summer so it doesn't feel like you've gone straight back into work and lost the joy you may have had over the break."