You’re an independent thinker. You always have been. It’s why the world of the 9 to 5 always felt so stifling to you. You’ve always preferred to play by your own rules, and find success on your own terms. And while it was scary at first, setting up your own business allowed you to live the life you want. A life without compromise, where you may succeed or fail… but you’ll do it your way. Your business is your baby. And like any parent, you’re fiercely protective of it, and insist on doing things your own way. Everything from your branding to your operations to how your employees answer the phone has your fingerprints all over it. And while your passion is admirable and your determination and resourcefulness impressive… you may be burning yourself out.
You’re a perfectionist and a people pleaser, and while this makes for a great business, it can also prove a dangerous combination for your health and wellbeing. Pushing yourself too hard can cause severe emotional, psychological and physical repercussions.
Here are some of the signs that you could be accelerating down the path to burnout, and what you can (and must) do about it…
You’re trying to do everything by yourself
There’s a fine line between being passionate and dedicated, and turning into a control freak. When you try and take control of everything, you may operationally bite off more than you can chew. Moreover, it can turn you into a relentless micromanager, and this can prevent your employees from learning and growing. Know when to outsource to companies that can help like XBASE Managed IT Services, outsourced HR providers or marketing agencies. You can reach out for a helping hand without compromising your brand or its ideals.
You’re struggling to concentrate
Your brain is like any other part of your body. It can only keep going for so long before succumbing to fatigue. Mental fog and the inability to concentrate are signs that burnout is imminent.
You’re irritable and moody
Do your employees seem a little scared of you? Do you find yourself losing your temper at the slightest provocation? As stress accumulates we can develop a heightened sensitivity to our stressors which makes us more irritable. And let’s face it, nobody wants to be the kind of person that this makes us.
You’re exhausted… all the time
Fatigue is one of the most common symptoms of chronic stress. If you constantly feel exhausted, even after you’ve had a great night’s sleep, this could be another sign that you’re close to burning out.
What you can do about it
Don’t worry, there are many entrepreneurs just like you who have experienced burnout or come close to it. Follow their advice. Scrutinize your coping mechanisms. They may be causing you more problems than they solve, especially where alcohol is concerned. Trust in your team, and know when to let go of the reins. Make time for your friends and family. But most of all, make time for yourself. If you don’t take the time to do things that bring you relaxation and joy… what’s the point of working so hard?