Updated: Jul 29
Burnout is a syndrome that results from chronic job stress that is not properly managed. Chronic stress develops from unrealistic expectations, lack of support, and unfair treatment, creating a toxic work environment. Symptoms include feeling overwhelmed, emotionally and physically drained, and unable to manage life’s demands. Burnout prevents workplace productivity by reducing energy levels and making it difficult to focus. Feelings of hopelessness, cynicism, and resentment arise, significantly reducing professional efficacy.
This can eventually lead to chronic mental and physical illness.
Burnout prevention is possible by managing stress in the moment, through the development of mental fitness. Mental fitness is the capacity to respond to life’s challenges with a positive rather than a negative mindset. A simple technique, called a PQ rep, is used to activate the positive, right side of the brain, transferring focus from the negative, left side of the brain.
Overcoming Burnout with Positive Intelligence Quotient
Your PQ (Positive Intelligence Quotient or Positivity Quotient) measures the relative strength of your positive versus negative mental muscles. PQ is the measure of your mental fitness.
PQ reps are completed by focusing attention on one or more of the senses. The objective is to focus so intently that you become fully present. The duration of a PQ rep is between 10-15 seconds. When PQ reps are done in succession, the right brain is more fully activated, making it easier to respond to challenging situations with a positive mindset.
Here are several examples of PQ reps using different senses:
Look at something with such intention that you notice tiny details. Notice shapes and colors. Notice textures.
Slowly rub two fingers together with such intention that you notice the ridges of your fingers. Are your fingers smooth or rough? What is the temperature of your fingers?
Focus on something you can hear. Notice the farthest away sound. Concentrate on this for 5 seconds. Now focus on the closest sound. It might be your breath. Do this for 5 seconds.
You may find your mind wandering while completing PQ reps. That’s okay. Mind chatter is very common. Gently redirect your attention to what you were focusing on. Developing mental fitness is a process. Just like any muscle, it takes work to build. With practice, it becomes easier. Because PQ reps can be done anywhere at any time, they can be very effective for managing stress and anxiety in the moment. When stress is managed, burnout prevention is possible.
Author | TEDx Speaker | Success Coach | Mental Fitness | Wellness | Goal Achievement
Lisa Hammett is a Success Coach helping business professionals to live healthy, happy, and fulfilling lives. To learn more about mental fitness, book a complimentary consultation online today.