Recognise and avoid burnout
2020 is a tough year and it’s completely reasonable to feel or have felt stressed at some point. In challenging times, it can be easy to overlook your mental health and well-being. When stresses become too much, it can lead to burnout.
Knowing the signs of stress can assist you to seek help or support others who may be struggling. Whilst everyone deals with stress differently, common stress signs can include:
- Disruptive sleep patterns
- Unhealthy eating and drinking habits
- Low confidence levels
- Affected mood and motivation.
Stress can also manifest in a range of physical ailments such as chest pain, headaches or dizziness.
The Mental Health Foundation defines burnout as exhaustion (emotional and physical) combined with cynicism and a reduced sense of accomplishment (low morale, self-esteem, lower coping ability).
Burnout is caused by prolonged stress and working long hours. Burnout doesn’t happen overnight, rather builds up until you feel completely exhausted.
What do you do when the tank runs dry?
When your mind and body are exhausted you need to give yourself a break. When your workloads are high many of us find this incredibly difficult. If someone offers their help, take them up on it. Give yourself some time to find some clarity to refocus your priorities for yourself first then your business.
1 - Be kind to yourself
Kiwi’s are naturally quite optimistic, but it’s okay to feel low. Find someone to talk to, a friend, a colleague, a family member or a professional. Be honest with your feelings, in talking through your worries can be extremely helpful in improving your mindset.
Be kind to yourself in your work, prioritise, delegate if possible and if you don’t get through everything it’s okay, tomorrow is another day.
If you can, fit in a little exercise, 10 minutes is better than nothing at all. Exercise can have a huge impact on lifting your mood, you don’t need to hit the gym, taking time for a walk around the block can be enough to give you a positive boost.
2 – Review and change your workload
Give yourself some time back and create a manageable workload by taking the following three steps:
1. Qualify your work
2. Delegate if possible
3. Review timelines
Prioritise time on work which is of most value in your role and to the business. Prioritise the people you work and connect with, seek out those who motivate and encourage you.
Never be afraid to reach out for help, there are a number of resources available, including those below. In the words of our Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern “we are in this together”.
Reimagine wellbeing together is the theme for Mental Health Awareness week (21 – 27 September).
For more information visit: https://www.mhaw.nz/
For business owners the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment has developed the Kiwi Business Boost with information and support for your business. https://www.tools.business.govt.nz/boost/