Prevention is always best, and there are also some preventative strategies which can be very helpful to keep from becoming burned out to begin with.  Dr. Whyte and Dr. Waleszonia, a psychiatrist and psychologist, have written a book called Killing Burnout in which they outline the seven vitals for prevention of burnout which we will be discussing in this article.  

The Seven Vitals

The first vital is purpose, which helps organize everything else in your life, including time, money, relationships, and career. As Christians, we have a foundation for building our purpose.  What is your purpose?  How are you spending your time and money to fulfill this purpose?

The next vital is time, which is a resource that can either lead to burnout or help prevent it. It is important to use time wisely and prioritize activities that align with your values and lifestyle.  Putting value on your time as you would on your money helps to sort out how you may want to spend your time.

The third vital is resources, which includes managing our possessions and finances to prevent becoming a slave to our things and being in debt.  (Proverbs 22:7)  All of the items we own require some kind of maintenance, and assessing if the maintenance is worth the added of value of having that thing will help to determine if you wish to have it in your life.  Here’s a song I have enjoyed for years about this topic.

Another vital is relationships, which require time to grow, but not all relationships are equally valuable. It is important to prioritize relationships that are most meaningful to you and add value to your life.

The fifth vital is spirituality, which involves spending time with God, praying, and meditating on His word to find peace in the storms of life.  Storms are what brings on burnout and this will help prevent it.

Health is the sixth, which includes both mental and physical. Taking small steps to improve your health can help prevent burnout.  When you are feeling run down either physically or mentally, you are more prone to burnout.

The seventh and final vital is rest and relaxation, which is essential for preventing burnout. Even Jesus needed rest and encouraged his disciples to rest as well (see Mark 6:30-31). It is important to take breaks, schedule downtime, and engage in activities that bring you joy and relaxation.

Looking at each of these areas and making improvements will strengthen you against burnout and improve symptoms you already have.  If you would like to hear Drs Whyte and Waleszonia discuss these seven vitals, click to watch this video from Living Manna Church in Northeastern Conference.

Previous posts in this series:  What is Burnout?,  Burnout in the Brain, Recovering from BurnoutMental Health and Burnout

If you are feeling suicidal, please call 988 for support, go to your hospital’s emergency department, or call 911.  God is not done with you yet.