“I just need a break” is a pretty common phrase to hear when the pace of the world around us seems to get faster and faster every day. Whether it’s work, family, or something else, feeling burnt out and tired can feel isolating and difficult to talk about. While there’s certainly no one-size-fits-all solution to these problems, there are some things that many people find helpful.
Take time to unplug. We live in the age of the 24-hour news cycle, where there’s constantly new information available to you that you might feel responsible for. Knowing about what’s going on in the world around us is important, but compassion fatigue (feeling exhausted from hearing about or handling others’ problems with compassion because of the sheer number of them) is often made worse when you’re constantly bombarded with new information–especially when that information isn’t always uplifting.
Making the decision to set aside time and not check your email or phone might help you focus on yourself and your relationships with the people in front of you.
Change up your prayer routine. When you’re exhausted and stressed, it’s easy to slip into the mindset of treating your prayer as just another thing to check off your list. If that’s happened to you, it might be time to consider a different form of prayer, whether that’s with lectio divina (working slowly through a Bible passage), praying with friends, or taking a peaceful walk and engaging in silent prayer.
Be gentle with yourself. Needing a break is not a bad thing–after all, God rested on the seventh day! Recognizing you need a break is a great start, but it’s also important that you’re not making yourself feel guilty about it. Even the holiest and most productive people took breaks and did things that re-energized them.
Talk about it. One of the hardest parts of feeling exhausted and burnt out is how isolating that experience can be. It’s important to recognize that, in addition to a God who loves you unconditionally, you have a support system that you can reach out to. Whether that’s friends, family, a confessor, or someone else in your life, even the recognition that your exhaustion is seen and heard might take some weight off your shoulders.
If the person you talk to is willing, you can also ask them to pray for you. You can also ask for the intercession of the saints! Many of them, including Verso’s patron, Bl. Pier Giorgio Frassati, took time to do things that refreshed them. Asking for their prayers as you take time to reset and rest.
At Verso, we’re doing our part to help pilgrims experience a break from the noise in their worlds by crafting pilgrimages that allow plenty of time to breathe, reflect, and sit with the moment. Discover more about our vision of pilgrimage or look through our many upcoming departures. We pray you find rest and experience the presence of God in that “light silent sound.”
Did you enjoy this post? Here is some recommended reading for you: