So I have a confession to make. For as long as I can remember, I have been a control freak. Since I have an obsession with having to know the ins and outs of everything I do, I have always had trouble letting others help me. I learn until I master and then I do, that’s been my life.
I run 100 mph juggling more balls than I can count by myself (mostly) because I can’t let it go, and I don’t really need help anyway because I got this. After all my whole year is planned out, but wait did I forget to schedule time off?
And of course, nobody can do it like I can right? Wrong!
That line of thinking landed me in the hospital with stroke level blood pressure levels. I had to give thought to what I had been doing. I realized that I couldn’t keep moving forward the way I had been, my life depended on it. But how does a control freak let go?
Well, I had some time to reflect on my life, business and future and I wanted to share what I’ve learned for those who may be headed toward burnout like I was.
Biggest Takeaway – You can’t do it all, and even if you can you shouldn’t.
1. Now I know for some people starting out, it may be impossible to hire a team at first. But as soon as you have begun generating some cash, your first line of business is to get a VA (Virtual Assistant) on board so you can start handing off the behind the scenes work that ties you up.
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2. Once you get a team on board, use them. I had three people on board to help me, but I still did most of the work myself. Why, you may ask? Because I’m a control freak, silly!
You have to be willing to let go and trust others can and will do it correctly. If they don’t do it right either your directions weren’t clear enough or you need to replace them.
3. You must have set hours to work. I found myself constantly working even when I should have been off. If you believe logging into FB to glance at your fan page or reading emails before going to bed isn’t work…it is.
Put strict work hours in place. What isn’t done, just won’t be done. Anything work related gets put down after your work hours are over.
4. Institute quiet time. Every morning, I pray and thank God for waking me up then I begin thinking about my day. Immediately after that, I found myself running straight for my iMac to check email and begin working. Bad idea.
Use thirty minutes to an hour in the morning to center yourself before jumping into you day. If you have kids or a lot going on the morning like I do, you may need to prepare yourself to get up earlier.
The quiet time is an absolute must before your day gets going.
5. Go to bed early. Enough said.
6. Love yourself. The biggest lesson I learned from landing myself a stay at “Hotel Hospital” is that I love everyone around me so much that I didn’t love me enough.
Institute a self care ritual that allows you time for yourself on a daily basis. A hot bubble bath, reading your favorite novel before bed, weekly pedicures, sit on your deck or patio and just relax.
Remember, you are not allowed to do or think about work when you have me time. Just do you.
Implementing these steps hasn’t been easy but it has been necessary.
What’s your story? How do you avoid burnout?