Reducing Stress and Avoiding Burnout

Sep 7, 2017

Now let me ask you a question. Are you exhausted all the time, maybe feeling a bit overwhelmed? Are you pissed off? Are you dreading going to work or maybe once you get there, you’re hoping that you can leave soon? Now if so, you’re probably feeling a little bit of burnout and probably a bit stressed out. Now burnout can show up in a lot of different ways ranging from being overwhelmed and tired all the time to getting sick regularly. Maybe you’re just feeling like you just can’t get enough sleep. If you don’t take care of these symptoms, they can lead to extremes like full-out anxiety and even panic attacks. Let’s cover the steps you can take to avoid burnout.

1. Go Off the Grid

Now in my Fordify video, you may notice a little bit of facial hair, and that’s because I just spent three weeks in India in the great Himalayan National Park. I spent three weeks completely off the grid, no real connection other than with the team that I was traveling with. It took a couple days for me to disconnect, but then it was amazing. At first, I struggled with being off the grid. I struggled with taking time off, but I knew that my clients were in good care while I was gone, because I’ve got a great team at Prime Concepts. It turned out to be the best thing I’ve done for myself in a very long time. The trip was amazing; it was beautiful, and we had good food. We got to see great things and we went all the way from 3,000 feet all the way up to 14,000 feet.

2. Lead by Example

Now if you’re a business owner or manager, remember that it’s important to show your team how you value time away from the office, and then look for ways to make valuing time off part of your company culture. Encourage them to pursue hobbies and interests outside of work, and make a point to ask them about their personal lives. Share a bit about yours too! Show that what you do outside of work affects your productivity at work, and that you value the positive results of their positive, self-care actions!

3. Take Control of Your Life

You know, it’s your life. If you’re feeling stressed or burned out, guess what? Look in the mirror, it’s up to you to change things. So make sure in your order of priority that you put yourself first, then your family, and finally you can put other things in line. But take care of yourself first. If you don’t take care of yourself, no one else is going to and you certainly won’t have the energy to take care of others.

4. Turn Off the News

The average American still watches an average of over 5 hours of TV a day. Unless you really need it for your business, you’re probably watching too much erroneous crap that doesn’t have any impact on your business or the success of your career or life. Turn it off and get outside. Start living YOUR life, not follow others’ on TV.

5. Get Regular Massages

You don’t feel like you deserve to treat yourself, but you do, and you’ll have a better quality of life as a result. Personally, I schedule monthly massages with one of my franchise companies. It’s a great stress reliever and has been shown to lower anxiety, improve sleep, reduce muscle tension, and host of other benefits.

6. Take a Vacation

It can be as simple as a weekend or even a day, but take a vacation. I didn’t understand this for the longest period of time. I would almost get mad if an employee asked me for time off, because I thought, “You know how much work we have to do and you’re asking for time off?!” But now I really understand the value of it for keeping my team refreshed. Your team needs time off, and so do you. It’s been proven to increase productivity, help prevent heart disease, and promote better sleep!

7. Block Off Free, Me Time

It’s hard to make time to be alone, especially if you’re busy working all day long and go home to a family where 1,000 things are going on. Just get out your calendar out and look at times during your week where you can block time off that’s just for you. This doesn’t mean you’re doing honey-do chores; it means you’re taking “me time” just for you. You block time for yourself, and you have to spend time on yourself.

8. Exercise

This is common sense, of course, but it’s one many of us get too busy to make time for. Be purposeful about getting outside, moving your body, and doing something different. Personally, I love going to Crossfit or riding my bike. I can tell the difference when I haven’t ridden my bike at least once in a week, then I get a lot grouchier. So get outside, move your body, get the blood flowing, and you’ll feel a lot better. The benefits here are endless.

9. Get More Sleep

Now, this is a hard one for me. I only need about six hours. They say I need eight and a half, but no matter what I do, I can only manage to stay asleep about six hours of sleep a night. However, if I get at least six, I’m feeling pretty rested. Your body needs sleep; it’s just part of who we are as humans.

10. Play

Create or engage in a new hobby. One of the things I love to do is go sailing. I have a little Hobie cat and it’s a lot of fun. It’s just a chance to get outside and do something different. After all, work isn’t going go anywhere, but practicing your hobby you’re gonna make great memories. So find a hobby, and make sure you’re doing something to get outside to play and have some fun.

11. Spend Time With Friends

Some of you might say well I don’t have any friends. Well then okay, write that down, “Get some friends!” But you need to make sure that you’re actually spending time with the friends you make. That means that when you go out, whether you’re going out to dinner or over to their house or at some type of an event, put your cell phone down, or even better, turn it off. Be engaged, be there.

12. Eat Well

Now maybe you eat healthy already, and if you do, then keep it up. But you can always improve. To increase your health and fuel your body, you need fruits and vegetables. Maybe you make good eating choices, but you could be struggling with portion sizes. Make sure to be mindful about how much goes on your plate, but don’t go too far the other direction; don’t miss meals. I’ve got a client who until like nine o’clock at night and the next day she’s like “Oh, I didn’t get to eat until nine o’clock.” I say, “You know, you’re self-employed. You’re in charge of your own schedule, so you need to make sure you take time to eat.” Get food bars to snack on and plan your meals ahead of time. If you’re in an environment that doesn’t encourage your good eating habits, condition yourself to find a place where you can go to eat that’s healthier.

So here’s your action step: go get your calendar and plan out your me time and your next vacation. Now maybe it’s just gonna be a day, maybe a half day or a long weekend or maybe it’s gonna be an epic trip like the one I just returned from. But you know what? Don’t wait. It’s your life, and tomorrow isn’t promised to anybody.

Author: Ford Saeks, Business Growth Specialist, Keynote Speaker, Author and Consultant. Helping you find, attract, and keep your customers. Find out more about Ford


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