First, a shout out to Cloris for her voice message that inspired today’s episode.
Spotlight: How to avoid burnout: Managing overwhelm and the shiny object syndrome
Meet Cloris, a performance coach and online trainer specialized in branding and lead generation. Cloris helps authors, coaches, speakers, trainers and consultants expand their reach and client base so they make a great living doing what they love.
How do I know so much about Cloris?
She’s on episode 1222 of EOFire, so make sure you check that out!
Cloris also sent me voice message between Season 5 and Season 6 on the topic of burnout. As she explains, she recently published this post on her site around the topic and it received a lot of attention.
And I agree with Cloris: burnout is likely the result of there just being too much information out there – information you for some reason feel like you have to consume and learn.
How on earth are you supposed to do it all?
You don’t have to do it all
Hopefully this comes as a relief to you: you’re not supposed to do it all.
In her post Cloris reviews five signs you’re burnt out, and she also shares a 3-step process for overcoming burnout. But my hope is that you’re not currently burnt out, rather you’re looking for ways to avoid this looming experience oh-so-many entrepreneurs have described to you.
That’s what I want to focus on today.
How to avoid burnout
It seems easy enough to say that in order to manage overwhelm and the shiny object syndrome, you should just stay focused on the task at hand, right?
But I know it’s not that easy.
There is a lot of noise in the online world, and sometimes keeping focus and not letting the best new platform or the coolest new social media tool derail you is tough.
But if you can get on board with the 5 recommendations below, I know you’ll have an easier time focusing on your current goals and understanding that your priority is in place for a reason: it’s the only thing you need to be concerned with.
I have a lot going on, you have a lot going on – everyone has a lot going on.
The trick is being able to prioritize so that you know – and everyone around you knows – what your priority at any given time is. Right now, it might be work, and at 3pm it might be playing with your kids.
Only you can set your priority, and only you can ensure that everyone around you is on board and understands. Take the added stress and pressure of being pulled in several different directions away and simply set your priority for times throughout the day.
Now that you know exactly what your priority is for times throughout the day it’s time to set up a schedule – and stick to it.
I’m a huge fan of theming your days. This means you set aside entire days to work on specific projects or tasks, or that you might even set aside as a family day.
Whether your theme is writing, podcasting, webinars, community management, catching up, hanging out with family or any other number of things, knowing ahead of time that is where your focus will be can be incredibly helpful.
Since I started theming my days, my productivity has skyrocketed. I’m no longer jumping from task to task in a haphazard or frantic way. When I know I have an entire Monday to work on writing, I’m not distracted by any other tasks.
The same goes for family and personal time. If you know that every Thursday morning you wake up with your kids, cook them breakfast, and help them get ready for school, then you’re setting yourself up for success by making that a part of your schedule.
3. Health and wellness
Living healthy and well is about giving your body the energy it deserves through working out and eating right.
For me, that means working out first thing in the morning to help me start my day off right, and then feeding my body the types of foods I know make me feel good.
Because let’s be real: if you’re not feeling great on the inside, how do you expect to feel great on the outside?
4. Just say no
There comes a time when you have to start saying no.
Don’t feel bad about it; instead, let it empower you to actually create the day to day that YOU want to live. Isn’t that why you became an entrepreneur in the first place?
Every time you’re presented with an opportunity, a new tool, a better way of doing something… there are two questions you should be asking yourself:
- What will I get rid of in order to accept the opportunity being presented?
- Will this opportunity help me take one step closer to accomplishing my goals?
If you can’t find something to get rid of (remember: every time you say yes to something, you’re saying no to something else), and whatever is being presented to you isn’t going to help you get one step closer to accomplishing your goals, then how could you say yes?!
Stop living according to others’ schedules, and start living according to your own. I can assure you that overwhelm and the shiny object syndrome will quickly become a thing of the past if you can just crush this one recommendation.
5. Don’t forget to turn off
When you’re working from home and loving what you do, it’s tough to turn off.
I recently realized that it’s up to me to take control of when I do what, and so every night at 5:30pm I know it’s time to turn off. For me, that transition or trigger is dinner time. I love to cook – it’s relaxing, it’s somewhat mindless, and I enjoy creating amazing meals.
Every night, I know that once I’ve started dinner, it’s time to check out of work and into just being home. So, what will your trigger to turn off be?
Project management requires focus and you being on top of the many moving pieces and deliverables you’ve committed to. If you’re allowing distractions and shiny objects to derail you, then your project isn’t going to make it anywhere.
Remember, you don’t have to do it all – in fact, you shouldn’t even be trying. Follow the advice above from both myself and Cloris and keep your focus on the things you say are most important to you.
Next up in Season 6
Next up is our Season 6 finale on project management!