Try These Steps to Maximize Burnout Recovery:

Q+A with an Expert

Since we can fall victim to Burnout from a number of causes we can also recover from it in a variety of ways. Who better to talk about Burnout Recovery than a rehab specialist? Physical rehab, that is…

Dr. Brett Poniros, Chiropractor and Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist, is an expert in the rehab of sports-related pain and injuries. I talked to him this week and gained a better understanding of not only his take on Burnout Recovery, but also his overall perspective and advice on the relationship between physical and mental wellbeing. Take a look below!

CV: We’ve been talking all about Burnout this month and as we near the end of April, we are wrapping it up by talking about Burnout Recovery. Let’s start with how you see burnout in your field and practice.

BP: I see people in pain who are victims of burnout, usually in their lives outside of sport, which leaks into their physical performance and capabilities. In reaching burnout, they have allowed the cycle of pain to continue or perpetuate even more physical pain than may have otherwise been provoked.

CV: What are some approaches that you have for Burnout recovery?

BP: The first thing, regardless of sport, is to adjust your mindset and make sure that your headspace is in a good place. I think that would look like taking a step back and identifying your character, what kind of person you want to be and ask yourself if your actions and daily tendencies would accentuate that vision or identity you have of yourself.

CV: How do you suggest taking a step back?

BP: I think it all starts with your mental approach to your work, your family, friends, etc. Make time for one to two things during the day for you to either do a task or consciously think about something that makes you happy or adds to your idea of fulfillment. Having one or two “wins” like this a day can drastically improve your mindset and approach to everything in your life.

CV: I’m hearing that from your experience, burnout ultimately stems from when people stray from what’s important to them or what brings them joy.

BP: Yeah. I think a major reason burnout happens is that people are pushing in a direction that subconsciously contradicts who they are or where they want to be/go. I’m also not naive to the idea that it may not be entirely possible for many people to dictate every aspect of their lives. For example, a person’s current situation may require they work in a place that makes them unhappy. My counter to that would be that if you can have even an hour a day that is dedicated to doing what you see as fulfilling you can reclaim your sense of purpose.

CV: As someone who deals with muscle and joint pain, you’re talking a lot about mentality and mindset.

BP: A lot of the emerging scientific literature regarding physical pain points to the immense importance of mentality, mindset, and level of happiness. My first step is to always try and address how people perceive their pain and steps that can be taken to more positively affect their outlook going forward. From there, we can start to address the physical aspects of why they may be experiencing pain.

CV: We’re all about the mind-body connection at Revive. We see how important it is to address the mental, emotional and physical parts of ourselves, too. It sounds like you work from a similar framework. 

BP: I think the idea of searching for a root cause instead of a band-aid is critical to long-term change and success. I also think that mental health professionals are going to be absolutely critical in the future of pain management and integrated care even more-so than they already are. Nothing happens to us in isolation, so the more that we can understand the individual components of our struggles the better we can work to remedy them.

CV: Do you have any final advice from a physical standpoint in how to address burnout?

BP: Exercise and movement have shown to be extremely powerful tools. So, my advice would be to try and incorporate them on a daily basis, with the caveat being that whatever exercise you choose should not add to your daily level of stress. So, find something that you enjoy doing and that makes you happy and take that as one of your daily “wins.”

You can find out more on Dr. Brett Poniros at @apollopcny on Instagram and Twitter.

Stay Well,
Catherine at Revive

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