A young man whose work schedule pushed his physical limits and severely affected his health has taken a step back and written a book chronicling his efforts to conquer burn-out.
Patrick Mabilog, 28, relates his experiences in "Break: Conquering Burn Out By Establishing Sabbath Rest," which was launched at the Manila International Book Fair earlier this month.
Mabilog, a marketer, business consultant, and entrepreneur from Iloilo City, said that one day he felt pain in his chest and back.
He was diagnosed with spontaneous pneumothorax—sudden lung collapse—and was in the hospital for three weeks.
During his hospital stay, he was still working on marketing plans and book reports, but then asked himself, "Is this really what you want to do?"
"We want to do something significant but in the midst of passion, calling, purpose, we find ourselves tiring ourselves and even burning out in as many times in our life," Mabilog said at the book fair.
Now an advocate of making an effort to "shut out anxiety" and taking a full day of rest, he clarified that he is not an expert on conquering burn-out, but found that his faith helped him. "I hadn't yet fully known what it means to truly trust in God," he said, "but I know what it's like to be burned out."
Mabilog, married and the father of an adorable 5-year-old girl, told GMA News Online that he still has a lot on his plate these days and that he has not stopped pursuing his passions.
"I have multiple vocations. Currently, I work as the chief of operations for [motivational speaker] Chinkee Tan. I also work as an online consultant and freelancer for clients in Australia and the US. I'm also transitioning between two ministry jobs as I am moving from Victory Iloilo to Victory Silay in the next few weeks. I used to run events and volunteer management in Victory Iloilo and will be working in Discipleship and Leadership Development in Silay," he said.
However, Mabilog has learned to deal with stress.
"Most of it is mindset. I had a very bad habit of over-reacting and being overly anxious. Now I've learned to just shut out the anxiety by reminding myself of Romans 8:28 ['For the Lord makes all things work together for our good']," he said.
"I get migraines a lot sometimes in the middle of the work day. Instead of pushing myself through the day and paying the price later, I try to immediately stop working at the first sign of exhaustion. Same with mental exhaustion. As a creative, getting a creative block is a sign that your brain is giving up," he added.
One of his non-negotiables is to make sure to have at least one full day of rest a week.
"Sometimes it has to be offset, of course, and that's fine. I've seen that cutting two half-day breaks a week works too. In my book, I talk about not being too rigid. As long as the goal is met," Mabilog said.
Other musts on his list are getting at least seven hours of sleep and 30 to 45 minutes of meditation. "I spend this time reading the Word and praying," he said.
In his book, Mabilog also underscored the impact of a "house filled with the Sabbath rest of God."
"Sabbath is not about policy, not a set of rules, not something done out of automation," he said.
"Rest is a gift from God...there is a God that invites us to come sit at his feet and experience his goodness." — BM, GMA News