Blog | Entrepreneurship

When you’ve hit the burnout

How to make sure you’re taking care of yourself

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Before I started my journey to be a social capitalist, I was a commissioned law enforcement office (AKA first responder) for the Las Vegas Police Department. First responders are defined as people who are designated or trained to be the first ones on the scene of an emergency. They are often the group that experience what is called the “burnout”. It’s the feeling of being completely overwhelmed and exhausted, to the point where it begins to take a toll on mental health. Often times, it leads to bigger issues like depression, PTSD or substance abuse.

But what people don’t realize is the same can happen when you’re the owner of a business. Occasionally you hear about business owners who crack under the pressure. Over the past decade, there have been several counts. Jody Sherman, the founder of Ecomom, took his own life in 2013. Sean Percival, former MySpace Vice President and co-founder, wrote a piece about his struggles. He said, “I was to the edge and back a few times this past year with my business and own depression.” Having his own experience, he wrote, “If you’re about to lose it, please contact me.”

Pressure comes with success, it’s a given. That’s why Josh and I write about personal development in our book. We know it helps manage stress, reaffirm hope, decrease cynicism, and increase satisfaction in life and in the workplace. There are professions that make you retest and qualify for your job every couple of years. Why should personal development be any different? You grow and change over time, you’re not the same person you were while you were in your 20’s, 30’s or even 40’s, so why neglect yourself?

It’s important to make self-care a habit. Below are some examples on how to achieve this:

  1. Spend time with friends and family. Being in the presence of people who care about you is important for your mental health. It reaffirms, on a personal level, that you are valuable.
  2. Make room for “Me Time”. It’s healthy to have time to yourself, away from other voices, to focus and relax. Even if it’s for a couple minutes a day, it can make a huge difference for your mental health.
  3. Watch a movie, binge watch your favorite TV series, or read one of your favorite books. Having an outlet that allows you to escape from reality can relieve the pressure of everyday life.
  4. Write. Writing can be very therapeutic when you’re under stress. Most people keep a journal that help them transfer their stress on paper, and forget about it. It can be a very useful tool.
  5. Treat yourself. If you have something that you’ve been eyeing, a new blazer, a fancy spa day, whatever it is - it’s okay to indulge every so often.

Take the time to invest in yourself and your well-being. Don’t let yourself get to the point of a burnout. If you’re concerned about implementing personal development into your life, do what Josh and I did - we built it into our business plan. That way, we wouldn’t have a choice.

To learn more about how we’ve implemented personal development into our lives, check out our book The Social Capitalist.

Original publish date: November 05, 2018

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