The topic of burnout has been on everyone’s lips for the past few years. The health crisis that involves this phenomenon is too real to ignore, with thousands of people coming out with the problem every day. But, in order to fight the enemy, first you need to know that it is and how it manifests itself. Burnout is a state of physical and emotional exhaustion that’s caused by prolonged periods of severe stress. People who suffer from burnout struggle with motivation, the feeling of being overwhelmed and unable to meet constant demands. If that sounds familiar, you too might be experiencing burnout. While it might sound hard to avoid or solve this issue, there are things you can do to avoid this modern illness.

Identify stressors

The first thing you must do is identify the things that cause stress in your life. Many people today work too much and have zero time to turn their attention inwards and reflect. A few minutes a day is all you need to consciously locate and list your stressors in order to start your path to stress-management.

Take breaks

If you work over eight straight hours, you can expect your productivity to go down, your energy to wilt and your stress to sky-rocket. The human body uses rest to fuel itself and rejuvenate in order to stay healthy and productive. So, make sure to give your body that rest-time every day, especially if you’re trying to retain focus and do well at work. Step away from your desk every hour, do light stretches (these can be done literally anywhere) or just close your eyes and relax in your chair for a few minutes. Ranking these breaks high on top of your to-do list will prevent burnout and feel much less stressed and tense. Your body and your mind will be very thankful.

Just breathe

This might seem like a too simple of a trick to work, but the way you breathe actually affects your whole body and the way it functions. A few deep breaths will replenish the oxygen levels in your body and relax your muscles. Whenever you feel angry, anxious or overwhelmed, try this trick: Take a deep breath in just like sipping through a straw and breath out through your nose. The cooling, drying feeling on your tongue that this breathing technique will help extinguish that fire boiling in you and help you calm down.

Use your free time to the fullest

Having control over your emotions and thoughts will definitely help you achieve peace and prevent stress from taking over your life. So, every time you have some free time off work, make sure to engage in an activity that makes you happy or helps you relax. For instance, you can try practicing yoga which will provide you with many benefits. It’s great for managing stress, keeping your emotions at bay and providing you with a healthy mind and body. You can join your local yoga studio or try practicing at home (there are many types of different yoga styles, so you’re bound to find something that fits your lifestyle). Some of the best yoga books can be ordered online and delivered to your address, so you can study it at your own pace. These give amazing advice on poses and breathing, but also talk about mental health, stress in particular. If yoga is not your thing, you can take up dancing, painting or just hand out with your friends and family—anything that’s positive will help you with better stress management.

Try to get away

Sometimes all you need to do to prevent burnout is distance yourself from your work. Sure, that’s not always possible, but if you have the ability to take a break, it will do wonders for your motivation, productivity and focus. A week away from your office will definitely tell you in which direction to go: You’ll either start to miss your job or never want to return again. This might sound too harsh, but oftentimes your work is just not worth your mental and physical health. Business opportunities come and go, so don’t feel like you’re stuck doing what you’re doing now for the rest of your life. There’s almost always a choice and a chance to change something in your life that’s doing you harm!

Learn to say no

This is one of the hardest but most important business tips that will keep you far away from reaching burnout: Have the confidence to say ‘no’. This can become one of your most valuable attributes, especially in the long run. However, every ‘no’ directed to your superior can have consequences, so think it through. Take the time to assess your workload, check your schedule, assign every task the time it requires to be completed and see where you stand. This way, you’ll have a measurable proof for your boss and will be able to offer good solutions instead of just saying ‘no’.

The unbalanced lifestyle can really wreak havoc in your body and mess with your motivation and productivity. So, seriously study the tips above in order to prevent that horrible feeling of being overwhelmed and drained that comes with a burnout.