I can’t do this anymore – we have all uttered this phrase at least once in our lives when we felt that there was simply no solution or method to move forward.
Read this blog to understand what is behind the phrase: I can’t do this anymore, and what are the 21 solutions to help you get over this mindset.
Mental exhaustion (fatigue): symptoms, causes and tips for recovery
“I can’t do this anymore” – is a sign of being mentally exhausted. Mental exhaustion is a common event and is a result of over-activity of the brain.
Physical and mental exhaustion is a phenomenon of the modern days we live in, due to the increasing rhythm of life.
When exhaustion sets in, it can be overwhelming.
Symptoms of physical and mental exhaustion include a constant feeling of fatigue and exhaustion. It can make its presence felt in all aspects of life.
Workplace performance is declining, social relationships are suffering, and energy levels are falling as time goes on.
If it is ignored, exhaustion can lead to serious consequences: the person in question may give up mentally, may become depressed, stress occurs and the functions of the immune system are reduced.
They starting asking ‘When will I die’ because of their mental state.
All this makes us vulnerable to disease and infection and creates a vicious circle.
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Causes and complications of mental exhaustion
Mental exhaustion does not occur suddenly but accumulates slowly over time.
If you are overworked, have too many responsibilities, or carry too much weight on your shoulders in your life, this can lead to a ceiling when your mind and body can no longer cope.
Now the symptoms begin to manifest.
Possible causes of adult exhaustion could be:
– workplace – Prolonged schedule, difficult colleagues but also other factors can contribute to the installation of a state of accentuated exhaustion.
As situations cannot be controlled, it is important to find balance during the workday by using relaxation techniques, exercise, a healthy diet.
You should also spend time in the company of pleasant people or try to do activities that you enjoy.
– stress – Although we can not eliminate stress from our lives we must learn to manage it because it is one of the major factors that lead to exhaustion.
– seasonal or chronic allergies (hay fever, for example) – Exhaustion can be one of the symptoms of some diseases (lack of rest due to lost sleep caused by nasal discomfort, headache, sinusoidal or sore throat), but also one of the side effects of some over-the-counter medications.
In addition, the body will struggle with pathogens, which cause fatigue.
To stop the vicious circle, you need to know what allergy you are suffering from and the allergens that trigger it to eliminate them as much as you can from around you. Careful cleaning of pillows, rugs, bedding can help restore restful sleep.
– high blood pressure – Because high blood pressure can be an indication of a serious illness, it is important to monitor and follow the treatment recommended by your doctor, if necessary.
Children, as well as adults, may experience fatigue until exhaustion.
How can you recover from mental exhaustion?
The first step to alleviating exhaustion is to address the underlying cause (or causes).
Consider changing your lifestyle, diet, regular exercise and stress management.
Although these active measures in the fight against fatigue can be considered difficult, at first, as time goes on, they will become more and more pleasant and easy.
If the lifestyle change does not help or if you have other additional symptoms, it is recommended that you go to a specialist for a professional evaluation.
In many cases, symptoms of exhaustion can be signs of a mental or medical condition (depression or chronic fatigue syndrome).
Often, they involve a high level of mental exhaustion and may require a professional diagnosis.
As such, consulting your family doctor for recommendations or a psychologist for a professional evaluation would be the best solutions.
Here are some simple tips that don’t require a lot of energy, but will set you on a path of mental invigoration:
- Make time to relax: One of the biggest reasons for stress is lack of time. Finding a free minute from time to time to gather your thoughts can ease your mind. Make it a habit to spend a few minutes in a quiet space after work, to help you recharge and reduce your stress level.
- Reduce sensory stimulation: Sensory stimulation of electronic devices such as our phones or TVs cause eye fatigue and disturb our sleeping patterns. Make sure you reduce sensory stimulation at least an hour before going to sleep. It is always a better idea to read a book before bed, instead of endlessly scrolling through social media.
- Learn to prioritize: Prioritizing activities is an extremely effective strategy for people facing a high workload. But prioritization should not be seen only as a simple time management exercise, through which we classify activities according to importance and urgency.
- Run some tests: Your fatigue may not have a physical cause, but it is good to do a set of tests to find out if your fatigue is based on a deficiency of minerals or vitamins or another condition. Your doctor is able to recommend the tests you need to do, but also to tell you how you can solve the problem.
- Get your body moving: Exercise is probably the last thing you think of when you’re tired, but its effects are impressive. Countless studies in the field have shown that sport has an energizing effect on the body, fighting fatigue. If sport is part of your life, fatigue will become a memory because exercise will give you the energy you need.
- Hydrate yourself: Dehydration occurs when the body eliminates (through sweat, urine) more fluids than you consume. Dehydration causes fatigue, exhaustion, headaches and concentration problems. So consume more fluids and you will notice an improvement in energy.
- Have a strict sleep schedule: To be rested, the body needs sleep. According to specialists, adults should sleep between 7-9 hours of sleep a night. If you make a strict sleep schedule, with the same bedtime and waking hours every day, you will be able to fight fatigue more easily.
- Omega-3: Omega-3 fatty acids are not only healthy for the heart but also fight fatigue, revitalizing the body. You can increase your intake of Omega-3 fatty acids by eating fatty fish (mackerel, halibut, salmon, sardines and tuna), flax seeds and nuts. There are also Omega-3 supplements that you can take on your doctor’s recommendation.
- Make a meal plan: In order to have energy, the body needs food. So, don’t skip any meals and do your best to strictly follow meal times. To combat fatigue, the body needs vitamins, minerals and other valuable nutrients that you can provide by eating healthy foods.
- Learn to listen to your body: Each body works at its own pace so you need to learn to listen to your body to know its needs. Some of us need to sleep at night, while others of us feel more energetic in the evening and prefer to take a nap during the day. Make your schedule according to the needs of your body and fatigue will disappear.
- Make sure you are getting enough rest: Quite obviously, in order to have energy, you have to ensure enough rest. To do this, first, check if you get enough sleep (7-8 hours a night would be great) and if you sleep well while you sleep. See also the articles on how to get a good night’s sleep, respectively how to wake up early.
- Take power naps: Another healthy habit is nap or power napping. When you can – on weekends for example – take quick periods of sleep during the day, of maximum 20-30 minutes.
- Eat healthier: The general energy level is also closely related to your diet. Pay close attention to the food you eat. Read the labels and try to understand what ingredients are in the products you consume. Are they healthy or at least neutral? Or are they downright toxic? Try to make sure that at least 80% of the food is healthy and beneficial for the body.
- Take into account your own body rhythm – Learn to pay attention to your body and how it feels. Usually, the body sends clear signals when something is wrong. Children are alert to such signals and immediately ask their parents for help. As adults, however, we tend to ignore such signals and ignore the problems that the body transmits to us.
Also keep in mind that during the day you will have periods when the energy level is lower (after eating, for example). It is the norm to be like that, and in such moments you can schedule easier activities that do not require much effort.
- Listen to music that can get you back on your feet – You can get back on your feet by listening to music that generates certain emotions. The type of music differs from person to person, depending on personal tastes and preferences.
- Write in a success diary: It is a useful habit, through which you write down daily what you have achieved. It is first and foremost a way to motivate yourself, but also to be aware of what you have achieved.
In short, take a notebook in which you write how often you want, the achievements you have had.
It’s just positive things, nothing negative.
But don’t confuse it with an ordinary diary, here you don’t write all the events you went through, but only the successes.
The goal is to become aware of your own achievements and then see how well you have used your time.
- Get moving: A little movement can re-energize you at any time. Even some simple stretching exercises (you can find some ideas here). Easy forms of movement quickly raise your energy level.
You can also try a light form of self-massage.
I usually massage the sides of my forehead (between the eyes and the ear and slightly above) clockwise. I noticed that area put me back on my feet.
- Get away from the screen: If you work a lot on the computer (my case), it is good to take a break from time to time. Go and drink a glass of water, eat something or talk to a colleague. It is important to completely disconnect from what you were doing for 5-10 minutes.
Keep in mind that when you work long hours in front of the monitor, your eyes need breaks. After 50 minutes of work, try to take a 10-minute break.
- Avoid energy drinks: Even if for the moment the energy drinks raise your energy level, later comes the energy drop that can be unpleasant.
Basically the level is high stealing from the energy of the next few hours. Rarely – very rarely – can be a temporary solution.
In the long run, however, there are other much more beneficial solutions.
- Go for a walk: A short walk through a nearby park or just in the area makes you break away from what you were just doing. Sometimes we need a rupture, a complete detachment. Let’s get out of what we were doing and refresh our minds.
Look at the people on the street and the buildings you pass.
Try to discover new details in the buildings you’ve passed thousands of times before. You will be surprised to rediscover your own city.
- Talk with someone: Make a phone call or go out to talk to a friend. Detach yourself and get involved in a discussion that can get you back in shape. Such discussions provide emotional refreshment.
- Make use of your creativity.
Side Note: I have tried and tested various products and services to help with my anxiety and depression. See my top recommendations here, as well as a full list of all products and services our team has tested for various mental health conditions and general wellness.
In this article, we gave you 21 tips for what to do when you feel you can’t go on any longer.
There are, I’m sure, other ways to refresh yourself when you feel like: “I can’t do this anymore.” What do you usually do when you feel that you can’t go on? Leave a comment with your experience below.
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Maura Nevel Thomas, Personal Productivity Secrets, 2013, John Wiley & Sons Inc.
John Hermarij, Better Practices of Project Management Based on IPMA competences,2016, Van Haren Publishing, Zaltbommel