Emotional Exhaustion

 

Most likely you haven’t heard the term Emotional Exhaustion before, but it’s a thing.

I know it’s a thing, because I have worked with dozens of women that have dealt with Emotional Exhaustion. They would tell you that it’s a real thing and it can be very frustrating.

It’s not that people don’t talk about it. It’s just that they don’t know it as Emotional Exhaustion. They usually refer to the symptoms of Emotional Exhaustion instead of the actual words. They talk about feeling fatigued, having low energy, They complain of never feeling l rested, even after a full night’s sleep if indeed they can actually sleep.

Emotional Exhaustion can be defined as being in a physical state of fatigue as well as emotional fatigue. It also encompasses feelings of overwhelm, burnout, under constant stress.

Have you ever felt stuck?

It might present as feeling stuck, meaning that you feel like you don’t have any personal control over your life or choices. Feeling stuck might also feel like you struggle to make a decision or you put off doing simple tasks. It presents with physical symptoms or complaints like joint pain, weight gain digestive discomforts.

Multiple factors can lead to Emotional Exhaustion, including physical stresses. These might include blood sugar or hormone imbalances, chronic distresses such as food intolerance. These can manifest into GI infections like bacteria or Candida overgrowth, maybe even parasites can also contribute to overall exhaustion.

Emotional factors like too much to-do, working too much or at a stressful job, relationships and conflicts etc… can also culminate into Emotional Exhaustion.

What are the most common contributors to Emotional Exhaustion?

  • Emotional stress
  • Family or personal crisis
  • Chronic Health problems
  • Stressful or demanding jobs
  • Being a parent
  • Being a caregiver for your parents
  • Jobs that increase your care giving role
  • Lack of time for yourself
  • Too many demands upon you and not enough time (Read “How Many Hats Do You Wear?)
  • Lack of self-care
  • Poor diet and lifestyle choices

Women that I work with, talk about experiencing an increased level of anxiety. Sometimes they notice, during the oddest times,  heart palpitations, self-doubt and difficulty making a decision. Thee can be around something super simple like “what to make for dinner” or Should I or shouldn’t go to this or that event?”

Does this sound like something you have experienced before? I know I certainly have.

It’s been my experience that many of these women also have other symptoms and complaints that they never connect to Emotional Exhaustion.  Complaints such as joint-pain and inflammation. You know what I mean, like when you get up after sitting for a while and notice your knees are stiff. T

They often experience some digestive discomforts. Maybe some of their favorite foods don’t sit well anymore. Perhaps they are avoiding gluten or dairy because they notice it causes them gas or bloating.

Acid re-flux is common today also and it is usually associated with eating acidic foods. The common solution is to just “pop” a purple pill and still eat what we want until one day that doesn’t help anymore either,. Most likely, because it doesn’t address the underlying contributors.

Constipation is another “trendy” issue that I see many women dealing with. Even taking laxatives like a “regular” food group or adding large amounts of fiber and yet they still don’t see relief.

Diarrhea and urgent bowels can be another side of the same coin. This is not only uncomfortable and inconvenient, but it can be downright embarrassing too.

What are the most common symptoms of Emotional Exhaustion?

  • Physical Fatigue
  • Irritability
  • Brain fog or cloudy thinking
  • Lack of motivation
  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Digestive discomfort
  • Headaches
  • Aches and pains
  • Increased nervousness or lack of confidence in your decisions
  • Weight-gain

As you can see, Emotional Exhaustion isn’t a one-size-fits all problem. It doesn’t respond to a one-size- fits all solution. It requires a detailed approach to looking at all the underlying factors and addressing all the contributors to reach satisfying results.

That’s where a functional and holistic approach to health really shines. When I coach these women, we take a deep-dive into their history and their current lifestyle We develop a vision for where they really want to be in the future.

Together, we look at contributors to their complaints, by extrapolating data from their functional lab work. The purpose of this process is not to find a diagnosis. That’s your physician’s job.

The purpose of this process is to identify hidden contributors to their problems and develop a holistic lifestyle plan to address them.

I have developed a detailed road map that not only has helped the women I work with, but I originally developed it  to help myself navigate Emotional Exhaustion. I have been blessed to share it with others and I am ready to share it with you.

What You Can Do Right Now to overcome Emotional Exhaustion

  • Evaluate your to-do lists and demands on your time. Can you eliminate some of them? Can you ask for help with some of them? You have to be willing to make some changes or seek help from someone else that can help you make changes.
  • Pay attention throughout the day to how you take care of yourself.
  • Do you drink enough water? Hydration is necessary for energy, cellular health and even organ function.
  • Do you pay attention to what you eat or do just grab the easiest thing?
  • Nourishing your body with whole- foods and avoiding processed foods and sugar will support your body during stressful times. The nutrients from whole foods also support your mood responses as well.

 

What else can you do?

 

  • Practice good sleep-habits, turning off screens and distractions at least an hour prior to bedtime, allowing yourself to relax and unwind.
  • Avoiding excessive alcohol or other stimulants can be helpful. You are already in a state of over-stimulation. Adding other stimulants to the mix won’t improve your energy. It will eventually have the opposite effect, contributing to your fatigue.
  • Set boundaries and stick to them.
  • Find an accountability partner to keep you on-goal. If you need more help in this area I encourage you to reach out to me or join my group and one of my programs.
  • *Work with a functional health professional like me, to help you create a vision for your future, identify contributors that you might be missing and help you stay accountable to yourself.

Know that there are Solutions to Emotional Exhaustion.

That’s why I created a face book group to support women just like you.

I want you to know that you are not alone and you have choices and options that can help you overcome Emotional Exhaustion.

 

The information in this article is provided for educational, inspirational and self-empowerment purposes only and is not intended to diagnose or treat any illness and is not intended to be a substitute for medical advice. It is the personal opinion and experience of the writer. Please see your medical professional for specific advice and medical needs.

 

Resources to explore:

https://www.en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/functional_medicine

https://www.journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0013297

https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S2352289514000204

https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/adult-health/in-depth/art-20046642

https://www.womenshealth.gov/mental-health/good-mental-health/stress-and-your-health

 

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