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Avoid burnout with these six easy tips

Wednesday, 31 October 2012 | By Amanda Jesnoewski

Business can be crazy, stressful and overwhelming at the best of times, though add in running a household and managing a family as well, and it's not hard to see why it can be easy to get overwhelmed and reach burnout as a mumpreneur.

 

Late nights, early mornings, always pushing yourself to work harder, grow your business and meet deadlines; you can end up stressed out, frazzled and sometimes even lose the passion you had for your business to begin with. But it doesn’t need to get to that point.

 

So how do you maintain your sanity during the busy times when you are facing a mountain of work and tight deadlines? Here are six tips to help you keep your stress levels down and stop yourself from reaching burnout.

 

1. Take regular breaks

 

When you're extremely busy, taking a break can be the last thing on your mind. Not wanting to lose your place or momentum you can often think, "I'm too busy to have a break".

 

But breaks are even more vital when you’re under pressure. Even just sparing 5-10 minutes every 60-90 minutes to stretch or go for a walk, can help to clear your head, minimise your stress and leave you more refreshed to get back to work.

 

2. Break up your work

 

Break up high concentration work with low concentration work and tasks that you enjoy. This simple change can often be as good as a break and give your mind the rest it needs to keep working at your peak – without hitting utter exhaustion.

 

For the best results, start the low concentration work or enjoyable tasks just before or just after your break as this will give your mind more of a break.

 

3. Accept a little imperfection

 

If you’re a perfectionist like me you can often add more stress to yourself and take up precious time trying to 'perfect' your work.

 

Sometimes though, you have to let go of your perfectionist ways for both your sanity and schedule. Don't get me wrong, still take pride in your work and ensure it is of high quality, it just doesn't need to be ‘perfect’ all of the time.

 

4. Get a life!

 

It’s important to have a life outside of your work and an everyday routine. Often when you’re passionate about your business and love what you do, you can view work as an outlet and it can become something you keep going back to in the spare moments you have.

 

But it's important to remember that you need time for yourself, in addition to time with friends and family, to have fun and enjoy life. Not only will you feel better for it, you will also be more relaxed and work more effectively.

 

5. Ask for help

 

This is easy to say but often hard to do, especially if you are a perfectionist, highly independent or proud. Though if you want to avoid burnout you do have to swallow your pride and give up control on occasion, especially in your busy times.

 

Look to outsource some of the tasks that you aren't good at or don't enjoy, collaborate with others in your industry to brainstorm projects or refer work onto, and ask family members to help a little more on the home front while you are snowed under.

 

6. Know how much work you can handle

 

One of the easiest ways to avoid burnout is to know how much work you can handle or comfortably outsource, and say "no" or "not yet" to the rest.

 

While it is tempting to say yes to every client and opportunity, you can run out of time, stress yourself out and miss deadlines or give poor service which reflects badly on your professionalism.

 

If you are a serviced based business, try booking your work in advance so you don't have to say no to opportunities. Just explain that you're booked out for the next week/fortnight/month and give them the option to book your services on the next available date.

 

What strategies do you use to avoid burnout?