Plan Ahead: Avoid Burnout

I confess.

This was a hard post for me to write.

Why? Because I’ve recently made a significant decision about my business.

Many of you who follow me know that I post a fresh video and blog every Monday and Thursday. Many of you also know that I wear about 50 hats as a first lady of 8 churches, businesswoman, coach, speaker, entrepreneur, author, and leader.

That’s a lot of hats!

Recently, I did a brainstorming session with my Mastermind group about how to make this year even more productive for our businesses.

First, we had to diagnose our current situation. We needed to ask ourselves: “What am I going to say no to so that I can say yes to what’s truly important?”

My Diagnosis: Burnout

Yep. Pure, plain, old-fashioned burnout.

In that session, I realized all the more that success and significance is not determined in how busy we are, but rather in the lasting, quality impact we make in the lives of others. 

It’s one thing to talk about avoiding burnout. It’s an entirely different thing to put it into action and actually start eliminating things from your work load, even if its work that you love.

As entrepreneurs, when we find our sweet spot and love our jobs so much, it’s hard to turn our minds off, or even find the off button for that matter!

Turns Out I’m In Good Company

Just yesterday, I read an awesome article by my own coach about burnout.

He shares:

In the last 30 days I’ve come to realize how “busy” I am.  I do love my work but have found that I have the classic symptoms of burnout.  Yeah, even me, the guy who talks about finding your passion and living out your dream.  I’ve been struggling with fatigue, headaches, irritability, shaky hands, fitful sleep, convinced I’m sick, decreased appetite, cynicism, questioning everything I’m doing, and pulling back from engagement.  I’ve had blood tests, heart scans, and much more.  Guess what?  There’s nothing wrong that can be cured from the outside.  And all this while business has never been better – revenues are up, the all new 48 Days Seminar is being released this week, speaking requests are pouring in, and our Coaching Mastery Program is growing exponentially.

I’m actually very relieved to recognize it for what it is.  Now I can correct it – delegate more effectively, let things rest when they are “good enough,” walk away from work more, spend more time on hobbies, sleep when I need it, meditate and do yoga every day. I don’t need pills, surgery or psychotherapy.  I’ve got this!  Yesterday, my “power lunch” was with my youngest board of advisors.  I just gave them open access to the Slushie bar, the ideas started to flow and I came away feeling refreshed and energized. 

If you’re feeling stuck, your solution may not be in doing more, but in taking a break from the “busyness” of life.  Want to be more productive — join me in doing less. Let’s go “sit” somewhere for a while!”

In the comments, I shared:

“Dan, thank you for your honesty here. You are a shining example of excellence to all of us. This is a very real issue and one that I’ve dealt with many, many times as well. Once I get on that momentum train, I don’t want it to stop. But I have to give myself the permission to not only slow down and enjoy the ride, but to take care of my own health so that I can add value to others. It’s so important that we take that time to recharge and say “no” even to ourselves with the next big project or event when we want to keep working because we love it so much. I gladly join you in doing less (but having greater impact), and taking a break from the busyness of life.”

Soooo, to that end, I am going to put my words in action.

Things Are Getting Ready to Change Around Here

  1. As much as I love bringing you Motivational Monday videos, they are now going to be done on Thursdays only. You’ll still fresh content that adds extra value to you. I’d rather focus on quality rather than quantity in helping you excel. Double win. Hooray!
  2. Instead of 2 emails per week, I will only be sending one on Thursdays at 9 am CST.
  3. From time to time, you’ll hear from me more often when enrollment is open for MPA (Maximum Potential Academy).

So there you have it.

These are my strategic ways to serve you even better, and avoid burnout in the process.

I want to hear from you. How do you feel about these changes?

Question: What do you need to stop doing so that you can ultimately end up having greater impact? What activities do you need to say no to so that you intentionally avoid burnout?

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

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  • Hi Jevonnah,

    Thanks for this post.

    I agree – “It’s one thing to talk about avoiding burnout. It’s another thing to put it in action”.

    Congratulations on deciding on the changes.
    I need to stop doing the unnecessary tasks that take away precious time that could have been spent in more productive ways. Procrastination is a biggie.

    – Leslie

  • Jevonnah Ellison

    Hey Leslie,

    Thanks for sharing. I once heard someone say that procrastination is not just the thief of time, but that fear and perfection are it’s cousins. Way to go for you on moving forward.