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How to avoid the dreaded Burn Out

It’s not surprising that so many small business owners have suffered burnout recently after the last few crazy years we have had in life and the economy. We've being riding an emotional and financial rollercoaster with lots of highs and lows. Many of us are exhausted with fighting the fires that keep being thrown our way, whilst we juggle family life and keeping a roof over our heads with the endless amount of hats we have to wear - the owner, manager, marketing, customer service, etc etc. All of this can get overwhelming to say the least. So, what things can we go to help ourselves before we burn out?

Make sure you are taking time away every week.

Making sure you don’t work past a certain time and taking day/s off each week where you are completely switched off (yes, even the emails/messages) is something that is usually given when you are employed. It seems more difficult though for us small business owners to do this as you feel your business needs you 24/7, and there is a trend for people being impatient and thinking businesses can respond at any given time. With social media being crucial to small business marketing, it’s easy to see why it’s harder than ever to completely switch off. But not giving yourself a proper break will eventually lead to you being completely burnt out meaning you won’t be as productive, as creative and you might even end up needing to take time away to recover. So you can see that it’s beneficial for both you and your business to make sure you are getting those breaks so that you don’t get to this point.

Set boundaries and stick to them.

The boundaries you set will be personal to you and the type of business you run but along with time management, this could be choosing the type of work you do, or limiting the amount of work you take on to avoid being overwhelmed with too much. This can actually be positive for business as your product/service becomes more exclusive, obviously it also has it’s negatives but you have to weigh up what is best in the long run, set boundaries that work for you and reassess often to make sure they are working to serve both you and your business.

Make time for self care.

Schedule some time out in the week for yourself. What you do is up to you, and this will look different for everyone because how people ‘relax’ is different for everyone. You might think you don’t have time to do this but do you have time to take off a few days/weeks because you have completely exhausted yourself and your immune system has been weakened so you are now physically ill. We are at the heart of our businesses and so we need to look after ourselves like we are an important part. And it can have an instant positive effect by coming back more focused and energised, which increases productivity. Some of the ways we like to make sure we take time out is Yoga, a workout, getting a massage, going for a walk, whatever it is that clears your head and helps you be more focused, then do it!

Plan ahead.

Sometimes we fail to plan for things properly because we are so busy sorting things that seem urgent now, we don’t look towards the next thing in time for that too to become another urgency. We are all guilty of this sometimes but if it happens often, we will never get on top of things. Make sure you are carving in time to look at goals every quarter as well as plan for the next 6/12 months ahead. With goals, reflection and things you know you’ve got coming up. We both love a paper planner to do this with, but however you think is the best way, planning is an important part of business management.


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