Written by Sandy Abrams, Author and Entrepreneur
Zoom fatigue is real. Staring at our screens all day for virtual meetings and remote school has caused tremendous burnout. In my book, Breathe to Succeed (2019) I noted that even Pre-Pandemic; Our minds are constantly distracted. Our attention spans are severely shortened. We want everything on demand. Our inboxes are never empty. Our energy is frequently negative. We’re addicted to social media. We’re sleep deprived and anxious.” Now, in 2021 those conditions are the same...times ten! Like most people, you probably need to add some mindful breath to your daily routine to combat the effects of our constantly connected lifestyle.
Here are 3 Steps for Breathing IN to Ward Off Burning Out:
1. Become self-aware of your own signs of stress (clenched jaw, headache, impatience, clammy hands, stomach in knots) and commit to acknowledging them when you feel the onset of physical and emotional signs of stress. Develop a sort of allergic reaction to those physical manifestations of stress and don’t let them linger. The second that you feel your energy has gone awry, STOP. Breathe IN a few mindful breaths and breathe OUT the stress and negative energy. Interrupt the shallow/autopilot breath with deep, nourishing breaths. Try inhaling through the nose and sighing out the mouth. It works, it’s neuroscience! Your mindful breath can help you to control your nervous system.
2. Find one breath tool that you know works for you (examples are found in Breathe to Succeed book) like Lion’s Breath, 3 Deep Breaths or Alternate Nostril Breathing and make it your go-to holistic prescription for daily doses of self care and wellbeing. Interrupt your old patterns by breathing into positive thoughts and energy in the moment, whenever you need it most. You can transform your energy with even one mindful breath and a positive thought that directs your body on how to feel. Use a mantra like, “I am calm. I am confident. I am in control of my emotions.” Breathe into that empowering statement. Your body will believe what your mind tells it.
3. Set reminders on your phone (because you know you’ll see them, right?!) 3–5x a day to begin to get ahead of burn out and overwhelm. When you get the reminders, tap into the power of your favorite breath tool and take back control from your devices. Find clarity, patience and creativity again and work with full focus and complete presence; mindfully. After just a short while of mini breath sessions, your body will crave the relief and nourishment and you’ll no longer require digital reminders. It’ll become second nature to utilize the always accessible power of your breath to maintain wellness.
We all have the power to choose our thoughts and energy throughout the day, but it seems that this choice has been outsourced to our devices and that’s not serving us well. Let’s take back control of where our attention goes and decide to commit to being more fully present and mindful rather than on autopilot. This is the human side of life that needs to be run by you. You create your daily mindset and energy and mindful breath is the catalyst to create your optimal performance. Breathe into positive thoughts and energy as often as possible to avoid burning out. You’ll never run out of mindful/strategic breath, it’s completely sustainable!
Sandy Abrams, Author and Entrepreneur
Sandy Abrams is a longtime entrepreneur and small business owner. Her first book, Your Idea, Inc. (2010) inspired other first time entrepreneurs to turn a product idea into a business.
In Breathe to Succeed (Published in 2019 and endorsed by Arianna Huffington), she's now focused on Workplace Wellness and shares her 30 years of experience utilizing the power of breath & mindfulness in business and life. Her business sensibility about "breath as meditation at the speed of business" resonates with the fast pace of our tech centric, on-demand business lifestyle.
"Even just three deep breaths is a form of meditation that's accessible to all." Sandy has been a small business thought leader with Capital One, LegalZoom, Marriott, Sage software and has recently led Breathe to Succeed workshop experiences with Google offices, WW (formerly Weight Watchers), Universal Music, Facebook HQ, McKinsey & Co., Women Presidents Org.,Sage software, many women's and entrepreneurial groups and is a featured speaker at business & wellness conferences. Sandy is on a mission to empower people to create their optimal energy for success & wellness...one deep, mindful breath at a time!