Even as a life coach, this comes up for me. This has come up this month in fact; this first fortnight of November I have both the wedding show and my wisdom teeth coming out. I've also onboarded a coaching client, performed for a piano teaching gig, and helped clean out a house that will soon (very bloody soon!) be our home. All on top of working full-time and living with family with very few outlets for personal time. Needless to say, this week I've burnt myself out a bit.
It's not just about the business and the number of things on either. It's the emotional load of each event too. For me, I've got a few nerves about the teeth surgery and concerns about recovery time, but I'm also happy admitting I'm a bit anxious about the wedding show and putting myself out there. Getting back into performing piano also has it's associated nerves and anxieties. Individually, these events and emotional loads could be easily balanced with extra nurturing and preparation. But together and accumulated, it's adding up to a bit of an emotional load in a short space of time.
Sometimes, that's just life; life has its busier moments and its quieter moments. Sometimes you just have to get on with it and get past it. But the nature of life is that there's always going to be something. This month it's these things, next month there are other things, etc.
Managing burnout is a constant balance.
But it's not healthy when it happens too often. How to avoid burnout?
No. 1 is listening to your mind and body, knowing when you need a rest and need to protect that time for yourself. For me that was asking my boss for a sick day. I could recognise that I was getting tired, and that fatigue was impacting my work. I also needed a day to breathe, catch up a bit and reduce the stress. This comes full circle as taking care of myself means I'll be back to offering my full capacity of work efficiency.
No. 2 is saying No. I'm starting to love saying no. No sets boundaries for where you will and won't devote your time to. And once you've said no, protect that space. No I didn't take a sick day to go shopping with you Aunty - I took this day for me.