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Burn bright, not out – Urban pros on how to avoid burnout

Whether you love your job or you’re just there for the paycheck, a hefty workload and high levels of stress can easily bring about an unwanted colleague – burnout.

Now with the busy season of family get-togethers, Christmas shopping and work parties approaching, our already-cluttered minds can quickly become as packed as the underground during rush hour.

But this festive season, we’re wishing for everyone to burn bright, not out. To help, we went to the people who know best – your Urban pros. Since they perform such a physically-demanding job, who would be better than to lead by example with how they look after themselves?

From self-care tips to their take on the most beneficial massages, here’s how therapists plan to keep themselves shining in the darkness this winter.

Woman sitting comfortably using a sound bath in her bedroom

This is what burnout looks like

Before we get into how pros avoid burnout, let's chat about what it actually is.

Burnout can make everything feel impossible. It’ll drain you physically, mentally and emotionally, and is usually caused by long-term feelings of stress, particularly in work. Things like a lack of motivation, extreme tiredness and difficulty concentrating are all signs to look out for.

Your body can also show the signs through headaches, muscle tension and difficulty sleeping. You may also feel easily irritable, detached and anxious. Taking care of yourself, especially during stressful times, will help you avoid getting to this state. 

Read more: How to combat burnout with mindfulness

We asked the pros how they stay well...

Rachel – the deep tissue enthusiast

Rachel knows the ropes when it comes to tackling burnout. She told us her favourite treatment is a deep tissue massage, but swears by manual lymphatic drainage (MLD) as the most beneficial: “it brings so many results and relieves symptoms.”

When Rachel's feeling a bit overwhelmed, she focuses on relaxation, puzzles, power naps, yoga, and keeping hydrated to feel better. To prevent injuries during work, she makes sure her posture game is strong and even uses a trolley to help her out. 

Her self-care secret? Focusing on her clients and savouring the experience: “Put your personal things aside and enjoy tending to a new client, it helps you forget your own irritations. Stay calm, don’t rush and eat or drink something nourishing and uplifting.”

Michael – the reflexologist 

Michael swears by reflexology – it’s his favourite treatment to deliver and believes it’s the most beneficial. And when work gets too much, he turns to relaxation, yoga, and meditation to recharge. Yoga and stretching are his focus to help prevent injury, and he reminds us that rest and nourishing food should never be underestimated.

Julia – stay energised

Julia has her favourite treatments, the Urban classic and energising massage: “it works on the muscles and the skin. It has the usual benefits of a massage, plus it's a wake up call for a stressed body.”

She's all about stretching, cold bucket hand dips (for 20 minutes), and perfect posture to stay in shape. Her injury-prevention secret is to ditch the finger pressure and make use of the forearms, elbows, and fists.

Mary D – keep it classic

Mary D favoures the Urban classic because it’s customisable and can be tailored to every client’s unique, individual needs. When she finds herself struggling, she’s another pro that loves to focus on relaxation, quality family time, and indulging in good food. 

To prevent injuries and burnout, she swears by regular massages and short breaks to recharge. Her go-to for self care? Take a breather, recharge your mind, and come back stronger.

Woman with curly hair laughing and throwing bubbles in the bath

Andreja – the only way is Thai 

Andreja likes to focus on anatomy and movement, making her a big fan of Thai massage and Thai yoga. With that she combines proper sleep, nutrition, and body treatments to keep her on top of her game. 

Lots of stretching and mobility training are her secrets to injury prevention, and when burnout creeps in she hones in on what she’s been lacking, whether it’s more sleep, better nutrition, or a little extra hydration. 

Catherine – the deep tissue pro

Catherine’s favourite treatment is deep tissue and says it’s the most beneficial treatment in her eyes. But when work leaves her feeling ‘meh’, she's all about taking a breather. Stretching is her go-to for injury prevention, and she believes that taking some time out for yourself is key to preventing burnout.

Samantha – total body believer 

Samantha Lambie is all about total body wellness. When she's not working her magic on clients, she enjoys a relaxing bath with essential oils or Epsom salts. This helps her avoid feeling drained after work. She uses exercise and massage treatments to prevent injuries and practises yogic breathing to keep her calm.

Aveline – relaxation is key

Aveline enjoys the art of relaxation, so it’s no surprise that the relaxing massage is her favourite treatment to treat clients with. That being said, she thinks the sports massage is most beneficial.

To stay on top of her routine, she focuses on getting plenty of rest. Massages, gym sessions, and workouts are her way of preventing injury, and she avoids same-day bookings to allow for recovery.

Lit candle with three small and medium pumpkins decorating a table

8 steps to living burnout-free, according to the pros

Listen to your body

Rachel emphasises the importance of listening to your body's cues and taking the time to rest when needed.

Prioritise proper nutrition and sleep

Michael is a strong fan of prioritising nourishing food and getting enough sleep for maintaining wellness.

Maintain good posture

Julia suggests focusing on posture and using the right tools to prevent physical strain.

Unplug and connect with nature

Mary D likes to unplug from work and immerse herself in nature to recharge, and thinks everyone should give it a go when they’re feeling overwhelmed.

Self-care is non-negotiable

Andreja reminds us that taking care of yourself should always be a top priority.

Take time for yourself

Catherine believes in setting aside time for self-care to rejuvenate and prevent burnout.

Indulge in relaxation

Samantha recommends relaxing baths and breathing exercises for mental and physical rejuvenation.

Allow time for recovery

Aveline's advice is to make sure you have enough recovery time between commitments, making sure you’re always the number one priority.

New to Urban? Make yourself at home

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