From burnout to best – how long does it take to recover from stress?

Is burnout reversible?

After a coaching call yesterday I realised I’d broken my record. My client has gone from burnout to their old selves in 4 weeks! That’s right. An executive who 4 weeks ago couldn’t sleep, wasn’t enjoying their work any more and had put in their notice, is now enjoying work again, sleeping well and laughing about how they were feeling at the end of March! And their metrics agree.

Can't sleep? Could be a sign of stress and burnout

You can measure burnout with Heart Rate Variability

Heart Rate Variability (the most consistent measurement of stress) is up, sleep quality has improved and the time it takes for them to drop in to a resilient state has improved 5 fold.

And it’s the measurement that tells me and them that things have improved, that it’s worth persisting when life gets in the way. Without measurement, all you have is a feeling.

And when you’re stressed to the point of mental and physical damage, your sense of how you feel is not a reliable measure of anything.

laughter may not be the best medicine but it's the simplest!

Burnout is reversible in just 4 weeks!

Now when I say I’ve broken my record, I mean them. All I did was get commitment, measure where they are and keep them on track, support here and there, and take away all the reasons that they came up with that might have hindered progress.

My previous record? Around 6 weeks. That’s pretty normal when your client is desperate to change.


Experienced business leader, mentor and coach, with fascinations for technology, psychology and ancient philosophies. A self-confessed techno hippy with a unique talent for bringing the best out in people.

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