5 Steps To Beat The Burnout and Get Back to Business (for Creatives)
5 Steps To Beat The Burn Out and Get Back to Business (for Creatives)
In these entrepreneur streets, it's hard to see yourself missing a dime, honestly. You want to be able to accommodate at will, gain new customers consistently, be present on social media, care for your current clients while picking up more, develop healthy relationships with other creators, keep new products in the works, get out products sitting on your iMac, deliver meaningful content, and just be all that in a bag of chips.
Well, I'm here to tell you how being all that and a bag of chips landed me on my ass, for real. Burnt out. Toasted. Fried, dyed, and laid to the side.
This isn't a well formatted or perfection injected blog that you're about to engross yourself in. This is the nasty truth about when hustling goes wrong, and how you can recuperate from it.
I'm Mercy, the national bestselling author, publisher, ghostwriter, copywriter, content strategist, mother, friend, best friend, consultant, CEO, single-parent, graphic designer, podcast host, and who knows what else. Correction, that's at least who I thought I was.
My excitement derived from adding new titles to my name with each new client or assignment that I accepted. As the calls came rolling in, I was picking up. It became more and more difficult for the word 'NO' to emit from my lips. I'd become a 'YES' man, wholly.
"Hey Mercy, can you design my post cards?"
"Mercy, do you manage social media? Like, Instagram?"
"Of course. What's your handle?"
"Mercy, I'm ready to have my book written."
"Mom, my head hurts."
"Lay down baby girl. You talk too much. That's those words catching up to you."
Before I knew it, I was a Jill of All Trades. I was handling one client's writing project, taking full control of another's social media profile, and chugging Tylenol down my daughter's throat at the same damn time. I had to admit that this just didn't feel good, or normal to say the least. My business had began to consume my home life, making little room for motherhood and other personal engagements. Somewhere down the line, the fort I had built around me started to dismantle.
I was pulled in so many different directions that my path had darkened. My light bulb dimmed, and I wasn't sure how to find my way back. In the pit of exhaustion, my body and mind collectively decided to work against me. They both disobeyed my orders, and soon chose not to submit to me any longer. At that point, I understood what was happening. As frightening as it was, I submitted to them. I, finally, admitted that I was burnt out.
During the diagnosis of my phase, I experienced an array of emotions, as anger, sadness, anxiety, and hopelessness. I became wrapped in my thoughts, and they weren't the best, considering my state of mind. Towards the end of February is when I noted that if I didn't put an end to the madness, a break down was next on my agenda.
It's March 31, and I'm now considering myself a recovering burnee (not even a word). The next 5 listings will give insight on how you can overcome burnout as a constant creator.
1. Retract - Take a step back the minute you discover you're burning out. Rather it be refraining from discovery calls, taking a break from social media, ending your work day a few hours early, or simply hiding from the world. Burnout stems from many places, the bulk of them relating to the public eye. When we're alone with our thoughts, we are blessed with clarity -which is needed for the next step.
2. Rewind - Try to pinpoint exactly when your burnout began. At what point did you become flustered, upset, anxious, or filled with anxiety? Once you pinpoint this moment in time, there should be a task, person, idea, or something of the nature that is attached to it. What caused your burnout?
3. Reevaluate - Once these triggers are identified, the reevaluation commences. Here is where you conjure a solution that combats the triggers you've taken note of. Create ways to avoid, cut out, or confront your triggers in a way that won't turn the notch up on your anxiety! Ex. Facebook was a HUGE red flag when rewinding after my burn out. For the past 30 days, I have avoided that damn site as if it has the plague. Even while writing this blog, I just remembered that I still haven't been on since emerging.
4. Reboot - Once you've tackled your triggers, it's time to reboot. Get back to the happy place that you've visited before and know so much about. In order to reboot, you must have been slacked in some manner. As for me, I mentioned a Facebook hiatus. Determine what vacation, hiatus, or drawback will help you get your mind right. Lay low for the come up. Take some time to yourself, recharge and then resurface.
5. Regain - Lastly, regain control of yourself, your life, your business, your brand, your home, and whatever else fell by the waste during your burnout. Implement the tactics you've learned DAILY to maintain order in your business as well as your brain. Remember to repeat each step if ever a smaller obstacle arrises so that your frustrations and issues don't pile up at once and come for your head. Keep your grass low.
So, 30 days after the realization of my onset burnout, I've rebooted and currently regaining control of my dealings. I started by chopping the bulk of my services, combining 4 websites into one, getting rid of useless products, cut discovery calls all together, and decided not to work past 5 pm for anyone other than myself.