Our society values hard work, and while there is something to be said for putting in the effort, we also need to value down time and self care. No one can do everything, but it can often feel like we have to do everything, because if we don’t, who will?
This is especially true for teachers who were overworked before the pandemic, and have been struggling with changing regulations and anxiety around staying safe and keeping their kids safe from an incredibly contagious virus we didn’t know much about. While talking about selfcare amidst all this chaos might initially feel self indulgent, this is the perfect time to change the narrative around burnout and selfcare. I can’t think of a better way to do that than providing tips for avoiding burnout and making time to take care of yourself.
Get Rid of Perfectionism
Stop Helping Others Before Helping Yourself
Recognize Your Strengths and Weaknesses
One of the downsides to trying to do it all is that we often try to do things we shouldn’t be doing because they aren’t our strong suit. The result is we end up wasting a lot of time trying to do something we don’t do very well (or trying to teach ourselves how to do something and then attempting to do it) when we could save a lot of time by recruiting someone who is good at it while we focus on doing what we do best (what I like to call our “genius zone”).
Allow Others to Provide Support
Keep in mind this goes for your personal life as well as your professional life. If your spouse offers to help out around the house, let them help. If you have kids that are old enough to do some chores, let them do some chores while you put your feet up and watch TV or read a good book.
Step Away & Take Breaks
Taking breaks is actually the secret to getting more done. When we’re constantly trying to be productive, we wear ourselves out and experience burnout, and then we don’t work as effectively as we do when we’re well rested. By stepping away every now and then to take a break, not only will you feel better, you’ll also get more done because you’ll be more focused when you do sit down to work.
Avoiding burnout can be easier said than done, but I hope these tips have provided a good starting point for you to think about the ways in which you may be overextending yourself, and some ideas you can implement to step back and take some time for yourself.
As a business coach, my sweet spot is helping my clients learn to automate and delegate as much as possible so they can spend more time in their genius zone and less time on the activities that don’t make them feel fulfilled. If you think you might need more help learning to work smarter and not harder, let’s chat.
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