A couple months ago I found myself in a funk, except it wasn’t going away. It seems to be lingering & I couldn’t shake it.
One evening I was complaining about it to my husband and he said “I think you are burnt out”.
I immediately put up a protest. I KNEW I wasn’t burnt out, just tired.
For some reason, the idea of being “burnt out” made me feel… almost shameful. We preach balance and mental health. There was no way I was truly burned out. I wouldn’t have let myself get there.
Later that evening I was laying in bed reading and I couldn’t get the idea of “burnt out” to go away so I started to google it.
Signs, Symptoms, Treatments. Que the Web MD spiral.
But truthfully what I found was everything I was denying. The feelings I was having (and pushing to the side) were all there. The writing was on the wall.
I learned that there are five stages to burnout …
Stress onset/ Balancing act
Burnout (Crisis level)
I was looking for the next thing to reinvigorate me. I was feeling like there was a lot on my plate. My ideas were never ending and I never seemed to reach the bottom of my todo list. I was no longer enjoying the things I loved because I felt like my time was better spent tackling the “important things”. Days were getting increasingly more frustrating and less prolific.
I took a good hard look at my plate and decided that it was too full. I made the commitment to myself that I wouldn’t let the Type A in me say “yes” to one more thing until I had a hold on the situation and went from there.
I got really intentional about my schedule and my time.
I started doing the things that truly brought me joy.
I took more breaks.
I asked for help.
I said “no” way more than I normally would have.
And I felt better.
When I felt better, I was able to serve my community better.
Not just my job, but my family and friends. I run our businesses but also our home.
I’m the one with all the balls in the air. Sound familiar?
The shame I felt originally was from the idea that I was going to be letting them down but im here to tell you that their momentary disappointment is not worth your mental health.
As entrepreneurs and community builders, we carry an immense amount of responsibility. We are “always on”. We wear lots of hats and do lots of jobs. We put others before ourselves and love doing it but sometimes that can’t be the case.
You can not pour from an empty cup.
You are no good to anyone, including yourself when your mental health is not stable.
Sound familiar? Are you also somewhere in those 5 stages? Take this as your permission slip to step back and do less. Take care of you. Refill your cup.