We’ve all been there. It’s midnight and you’re tired, but you're pushing through because the work has to get done. You’re not feeling creative, or at your best, the caffeine has run out, but you know that first thing in the morning you’ll be taking the kids to school and rushing to get started on the next issue that pops up in your business.
Burnout is not only a threat, it’s knocking at your door.
You’ve heard the podcasts, the inspirational quotes and the reminders to avoid burnout and they’re all on your list. But that list is long, the days are short, and you are tired.
We listened to a great podcast recently with Brendon Burchard who was a guest on Amy Porterfield’s podcast, one of our favorites by the way. He was talking about his new book: High Performance Habits: How Extraordinary People Become that Way.” It was a fantastic listen and it gave us a lot to think about in the way of becoming leaders and running a successful business. He talked about 6 habits that people who are wildly successful tend to do. These were around seeking clarity, generating energy, demonstrating courage, raising necessity and increasing productivity. If you haven’t read the book, or listened, we highly suggest you do.
But it got us thinking about how people can do these things, without burning out. We are getting 10 million things thrown at us every day about what we should do on social media, our email marketing, our networking, our problem solving, our reading, our team building and so much more. It’s exhausting to think of all the places we need to be and the people who need us.
Working in the corporate world, burn out was also a major factor in our daily lives. In full transparency, we were both burnt out a majority of the time we worked there when we had kids. It was long nights, constant meetings and limited time all around. That doesn’t mean we didn’t love parts of it, or love the company and people - it just kind of felt like we were set up for failure. Because the world we live in is not geared towards supporting Moms who work, period. But this post isn’t about that, we’ll save that for later. This post is about how we can create healthy habits for ourselves to stay productive and driven, while avoiding burnout.
We learned a lot in how we manage the burn out by actually burning out, several times, ourselves. Plus after working with dozens of business owners, and talking with so many of our friends here, one thing is clear…burnout is real, it is here, but there is something we can do about it.
Here are 4 habits you can implement to get you more productive, with less burnout.
A healthy mindset.
If your mind is a mess, your work probably will be too. Now this is no small feat. You have to be willing to do the work if you’re not in the right mental space. But know that it’s ok if you’re not right now. We’ve been there, we’ve seen our friends struggle too, because, being a business owner takes a massive toll on our mental health. But it also can do wonders for it. Getting into a healthy space mentally, means something different for each of you. For us, our friends & colleagues…it has meant: therapy, books, exercise, eating right, and doing what brings you joy. This last one is CRITICAL. If you aren’t feeding your soul and filling your cup, you know the saying “you can’t pour from an empty cup.” You have to prioritize your JOY to have a healthy mindset that can pour into your business, team, clients, etc.
Clutter in your office, your systems, your brain is a difficult place to drive from. Spend some time cleaning up your workspace and creating efficiencies in your physical space. Placing pens and notepads where you easily access them. Then spend some time getting organized on your priorities and your to-do list. Figure out a system to do this daily so that you can develop a healthy habit of staying on track. I’m not going to lie, this is not easy. It takes practice and consistency to create a system for prioritizing your time, but it can change the way you work.
There are several options out there, but I like to use the daily 3 to help me stay organized & prioritize my daily life. I write down each morning (in ClickUp) my 3 priorities for the day in my business, and my 3 at home. This doesn’t mean I won’t do other things, but these are the 3 that I have to prioritize. Getting and staying organized will help you come from a place of clarity and control when you start your day, and will set you up for success.
KISS - Keep it Simple, Stupid.
Nothing annoys me more than seeing an overcomplicated system, or process that is unnecessary. In the corporate world it sometimes seemed like a competition for who could come up with the most complicated system for communication, or project management. It took me more time to wrap my head around the complex powerpoint or project tool then the actual content itself.
We have to stop overcomplicating, and overthinking things. If a simple to do list works, then why are we creating a complex gantt chart. Simplify your processes & systems into the bare minimum of data needed. Allow your team the flexibility to do the same. Then simplify your life…look at the pointless things being done, and stop doing them. Do we have to attend all 8 birthday parties and playdates this month? No, we do not. Simplify and focus where it counts in your life & business, and clear out the rest. Your calendar will thank you.
Ask for help.
You’ll hear us say this over and over and over again because it is a game changer for us in the home and in our business. As young women, I think we somehow got the idea in our heads that to be successful, we had to prove to everyone that we could handle it on our own. I still struggle with this to be honest, especially in the home, but it’s a work in progress. We have villages of people who WANT to help us and support us, so we have to let go of a little of our pride and ego and ask Grandma to watch the kids, or ask for more help in the home with cleaning, ask your kids to do more too! You’ll be amazed at what they can actually do that’s helpful (I’m looking at you laundry!)
Now in your business, there are so many things we can ask for help with. The best part is, it is not an all or nothing. You can ask for 5 hours of help per month, or you can ask for full-time support. With today’s freelance market, it is so easy to gain the flexibility of time. We recently brought on a VA to support us in key areas, and even a small number of hours is incredibly helpful. We know finances typically play a role, so see where you can get help within your budget because even a little bit goes a long way.
There are countless numbers of habits you can work on, but in sticking with our theme of “KISS” or Keep It Simple, Stupid” let’s not overcomplicate this.
Work on your healthy mindset, get organized & prioritize your day, simplify the sh*t out of your life, and ask for help. Stop feeling like it has to be this way and take some action to drive yourself towards a more productive business, without the burn out. We’re here to cheer you on every step of the way, because you’ve got this.
Download our Free Roadmap, "Work Less and Claim Back Your Time as a Business Owner" for a tool to help you build on these habits and start claiming back your time (and JOY) as a business owner.