Living with people or being a leader often demands a lot and can be emotionally draining more than people think or feel. People always look up to leaders as their role models; set certain expectations from them and expect them to be perfect in every aspect of their lives forgetting to realize that all the popular leaders are also humans with their weaknesses.
This same feeling is what most church leaders go through; not only do they have their Christians as their responsibility but some do have families as well and putting a balance between the two can be a very challenging experience which few of leaders know how to handle. How then can a church leader handle these challenges?
Dr. Wes Beavis is a great clinical psychologist who describes what church leaders go through as a ministry burn out and these Christian leaders need help to walk through the journey, some needed to be guided on how they can avoid the burnout and how to deal with it if experiencing it. According to Dr. Wes Beavis, many pastors leave their ministries due to burnouts and the inability to deal with the stress that comes with it.
What Is A Ministry Burn Out?
Dealing with the challenges of a ministry can sometimes overpower a Christian leader or a pastor and leave them feeling depressed, worn out, emotionally drained with no energy to carry on; this scenario is commonly referred to as a ministry burn out. How can you identify you are suffering from burnout?
What Are The Symptoms Of A Ministry Burn Out?
Sometimes some people experience burnout seizures without knowing that is what they are suffering from, but here are some few symptoms of a ministry burn out.
- Feeling stressed is a typical example of a burnout
- Depression and getting feelings you cannot explain or understand is another clear indication.
- Inadequate sleep and rest or feeling restless
- Spiritual dryness or loss of anxiety for the word
- Loss of motivation for ministry
- Feelings of isolation
- Vulnerability to temptation
- Disconnected and a lack of love with those you serve
Knowing the symptoms of a ministry burnout is one thing and getting out of it is a tougher journey but here are some few tips you can follow to help you deal with the burnout. The reason why it is advisable to avoid getting to that level, the reason why it is often said “prevention is better than cure” however the case, here are a few prevention and recovery tips.
- Spend more time in prayer and the Word; nothing brings peace to the soul as compared to the word of God.
- Regain lost vision for ministry; reflect on reasons why you decided to start the ministry.
- Stop comparing yourself to others; no two people are the same, we are all unique creatures and masterpieces, so embrace your weaknesses and strengths.
- Focus on the positive while expressing gratitude more often; complaining is negative energy that will only cause you pain.
- Have fun and cut off draining relationships, hanging out with people with toxic attitudes will only make you feel tired.
- Do activities that energize you so you can have a good physical shape and size
Humility makes us see things differently and learn from others as well. And always make sure to pray for all including yourself.