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What Is Recovery Burnout?

What Is Recovery Burnout?

Have you experienced burnout during your recovery from addiction? It can happen for those who come to the realization that recovery is not a short sprint but a grueling marathon. If you feel you have not achieved your desired progress after devoting much time, energy, and hope to your journey, you might experience burnout syndrome. You may feel the depletion of energy and motivation or feel exhausted and negative. You might become cynical about your routines. This all means that you have hit a bump. It is time to rest, recharge and revise your expectations. Understanding what recovery burnout is and how to cope with it is key to long-term success.

What Does Burnout Feel Like?

Detox and treatment is an enormous undertaking. If you are staying at a treatment center, the next few months might feel like working on a huge project; recovery is similar to any big project you’ve done in the past. You have to invest a great deal in it, financially, time-wise, and emotionally. The expectations of your family and friends can be overwhelming too. This might be the chance to finally repair some broken relationships and eroded trust. The stakes of treatment and recovery are high.

But sooner or later, there will be bumps along the way. Burnout feels like you can no longer pull up any energy. You will likely experience withdrawal symptoms, which alone can exhaust and frustrate you. You might find it hard to adjust to a new place and new people. The degree of socialization and the demands of therapists and peers to be part of counseling and therapy can be overwhelming. Maybe you feel stuck on a problem, or like you’re not moving forward with your recovery at the pace you’d like. Perhaps it’s the fatigue of daily to-do lists making you think you don’t want to progress anymore. The well of motivation is dried up. All the while, you must still fight those cravings.

How Do You Balance Motivation and Relaxation?

This burnout phase is a reminder you have more learning to do. Most people who experience burnout from overwork or over-exercise can tell you that this is a phase when you feel disconnected from yourself. They are often the type of people who find it hard to relax, to enjoy solitude, or just have fun. Take some time to be with yourself. What are things and activities that help you connect with your inner self? For some, it could be journaling or fishing. For others, it is meditation and yoga. 

Burnout is an opportunity for you to learn how to balance motivation and relaxation. You have come this far in treatment! You may have come through denial into an eagerness to be rid of the disease. That is a great accomplishment, but motivation alone won’t get you far. Rebuilding a balanced lifestyle sometimes means taking things slow and allowing progress to happen organically. 

Stick with the process and trust that the health professionals can support you even through burnout. Many people have come before you and overcome SUD in professional treatment centers. Progress must be made in many areas at once: your body, mind, and habits. It’s a step-by-step learning process. If you feel like you need help moving forward and managing your expectations, you should consult the staff and counselors at your treatment center.

What Should I Change About My Expectations?

Finding it challenging to manage your expectations might also have to do with feeling like you’re not in control. Indeed, you are relinquishing control over a lot of things that can feel humiliating and defeating. The paradox of it is that you need to let go to regain control. When you feel overwhelmed and burnt out, try letting go and trust the process. Let your body and mind go through the motions of treatment and let others take care of you. 

At the same time, you need to gain a new perspective on this recovery phase. It takes great patience to go through the arduous process of detox, treatment, and recovery. Rebuilding your social life is another challenge that might take even longer and more patience. Look back at your recovery journey and notice the small victories and significant milestones. As long as you’re in a recovery mindset, you have made significant progress. Think of your loved ones who have been patient with you even before you decided to enter treatment. Their love and patience should serve as a steady motivation for you to carry on.  

In recovery from addiction, you might experience burnout in various forms. Feelings of frustration and despair might overwhelm you. This does not mean that recovery is over; you are, in fact, doing the hard emotional work of recovery. Learn to live a balanced rhythm of motivation and relaxation. At Laguna Shores Recovery, we can help you overcome recovery burnout. We offer proactive interventions and a holistic approach to sustainable recovery. Our cognitive and behavioral therapies, family relationship programs, 12-step groups, and outpatient offices are designed to keep you motivated and balanced. Our staff and experienced health professionals have helped many people navigate the entire process of recovery. They know when to cheer you up and when to slow you down. Our therapists and counselors can also coach you into rebuilding a balanced lifestyle that prevents burnout in the future. Call us at (866) 229-9923. Now is the time to seek help.