Isn’t it strange how mundane things can bring back really vivid memories? As the burnt toast hit the trash, I remembered how burn out meant my first online business ended up on the scrapheap (nearly taking me with it).
Juggling a full-time job, family, volunteering and running an online business left me physically, emotionally and psychologically exhausted. Just like toast, the burn creeps in slowly and when complete, you’re left unable to nourish yourself or anything else.
You may have already heard run-of-the-mill advice like taking regular breaks to prevent burn out. But what’s the point of stepping away from work only to be stressed that things will fall apart?
Here are five not-so-obvious ways to become burn out proof:
1. Create the right systems
Having no systems (or the wrong systems) is a recipe for disaster. Unfortunately, systems get a bad rap because they can be seen as snooze fests. Who’s ever heard of a sexy system? I sure haven’t!
To make matters worse, traditional systems have a sterile and stuffy image that can make some entrepreneurs feel boxed into something that’s unsuitable for their needs.
The key to making systems work for your business is to design them with flexibility, so your creativity isn’t stifled. Systems that curb burn out are those that account for the ‘secret sauce’ of how you do business. This ensures authenticity, even when your business grows. I call these flexible and personalized systems ‘productivity recipes.’ Because, just like normal recipes, you have the core ingredients and you can make tweaks to suit your business taste.
We’re all different, so there’s no one-size-fits-all business system. Productivity recipes focus on the human side of systems. They bring order to repetitive tasks while taking into account the quirks that make your business unique.
Productivity recipes stop burn out by preventing you from biting off more than you can chew, especially when your business is growing.
2. Get apps ‘talking’ to each other
Automation is another way to hand over repetitive and stressful work. Services like IFTTT, Shipyard and Zapier connect the apps you use to automate your workflow. In other words, they get rid of the biggest time sucks in your business.
Part of creating productivity recipes is to spot tasks you can automate. This will help your business run like a well-oiled machine and save you money when outsourcing.
Start out automating everyday tasks, like social media and email management, by finding out how the apps can ‘talk’ to each other.
Do yourself (and your health) a favour and start to create productivity recipes to see what you can automate. The aim is to drop repetitive tasks like a hot potato to reduce the risk of burnt out. Get your apps communicating to free up time to chat with friends and family.
“The first rule of any technology used in a business is that automation applied to an efficient operation will magnify the efficiency. The second is that automation applied to an inefficient operation will magnify the inefficiency.” – Bill Gates
Outsourcing should be done when you already have productivity recipes in place. It’s tempting to hand over parts of your business to a VA or freelancer and forget about it, but this approach could land you in hot water.
With productivity recipes, anyone you hire will have the blueprint of how you expect things to be done. You’ll also save time getting new hires up to speed. Most importantly, your clients won’t get any nasty surprises or unwelcome changes when you grow your team.
You’ll be able to take time out to recharge your batteries, having all the confidence that your business will continue to function properly in your absence.
4. Find some cheerleaders
Being part of a supportive group is crucial to making yourself burn out proof. Informal groups, like Facebook communities, are helpful networks that can prevent you going down the burn out road.
If you’ve been working non-stop and your brain feels as limp as the lettuce in the sandwich you’ve been too busy to eat, connect with people who can identify with where you are and encourage you to take a step back.
The best groups are those that aren’t strictly business. Look for a group with dedicated days for sharing things like inspirational quotes and jokes to lighten things up a little.
Feeling like you’re the only one who experiences overwhelm can be a lonely place. Being part of a community where people share their struggles helps to provide perspective that you can achieve your goals without compromising your health.
“Be strong, be fearless, be beautiful. And believe that anything is possible when you have the right people there to support you.” – Misty Copeland
5. Inject your personality into your passion
When you’re passionate about your work, it seems like you can work day and night without ever feeling tired. Of course, it’s advisable to make time for proper rest. I’ve found that, the more I enjoy work, the more I look after myself to reduce the risks of becoming ill. I’m passionate about helping entrepreneurs be more productive to avoid burn out. I’m also a huge foodie. That’s why I incorporate food and drink analogies in my work because being fed and watered is something we can all relate to.
Injecting your personality into your work makes everything easier. It’s very draining pretending to be someone you’re not. If you’re already pursuing your passion, add a splash of your personality to reduce the chance of burn out.
Suffering from burn out is a serious setback to your health and business. It’s a relief to know that, unlike the burnt toast that ends up in the trash, you can make a full recovery from burn out. But why take the risk in the first place? Put in place practical measures to avoid getting burnt when the heat is turned up in your business.
It’s good to share. What do you put in place to make sure you don’t burn out? Leave a comment below and share your thoughts.
How do you avoid burning out when things get tough? Let us know by commenting below!
Image courtesy of Twenty20.com
12 Things I Learned in 12 Months of Working on My Startup
8 Actionable Ways to Get Your Startup’s First 100 Customers
What’s the one thing that every business wants? Is it money, fame, or endless resources? The answer is quite simple—customers. Having customers is the sure-shot way of ensuring that your business stays afloat in the long run. No matter how good your product or services are, without people buying what you sell, you won’t reach anywhere. However, establishing a customer base is one of the most challenging things a business has to do, especially if you are just starting. (more…)
15 Mistakes to Avoid When Starting a Business in 2021
‘Learn from the mistakes of others, you cannot live long enough to make them all.’ These famous words from Eleanor Roosevelt stand more accurate than ever in the business world today. Starting a business is challenging, and making mistakes even before starting can sabotage your entire venture. The best way to ensure your new business’s success is to plan each step carefully to prevent falling into obvious traps. (more…)
5 Women Who Revolutionized Tech and Made Millions
Failing is More Important Than Succeeding
51 Legendary Elvis Presley Quotes
Why Entrepreneurial Innovation Matters More Than Ever
20 Ways You Can Become a Powerful Communicator
5 Indicators of Unresolved Attachment Trauma
77 Inspirational Quotes That Will Change Your Life
(Images) 52 Motivational Picture Quotes For An Epic Year Of Success
30 Famous Quotes That Will Inspire Success In You
40 Rare Motivational and Inspirational Picture Quotes
(Images) 60 Colorful Picture Quotes To Empower Your Life
3 Prince EA Videos To Change Humanities Path To Greatness
(Video) What Is Success? An Entrepreneurial Story To Inspire You
(Inspirational Video) What If Today You Knew You Were Going To Take Your Last Breath?
How To Make Enough Money From A Blog To Quit Your Job – Kate McKibbin
How Finding Your Passion And Becoming An Entrepreneur Can Lead To Happiness – Chiquita Searle
Success Advice4 weeks ago
How to Stand Out as a Leader in 2023 & Beyond
Life4 weeks ago
The 7 Hidden Signs You’re Self-Sabotaging Your Progress
Success Advice3 weeks ago
The Dark Side of Success: How to Identify and Avoid Toxic Leaders
Success Advice3 weeks ago
Why Every Successful Business Needs a Co-founder
Success Advice3 weeks ago
How to Fast Track Your Career for Guaranteed Success
Entrepreneurs2 weeks ago
How to Lose a Team in 10 Days: Are You a True Leader?
Life2 weeks ago
Grit: The Key to Your Ultimate Greatness
Success Advice2 weeks ago
How to Develop a Following of Passionate Fans Even Before Launch