We've often been told that you have to put on your oxygen mask first and that “you can't pour from an empty cup”. As side hustlers trying to achieve work/life/biz balance is especially hard. This can take a toll on your body, your friendships and your overall quality of life. In a word, it can lead to burnout.
And the World Health Organization(WHO) has declared “burnout” an official “occupational phenomenon.”
You may be burned out if you are feeling any of the following:
- You are so exhausted at the end of the day that you can barely stay awake when you get home.
- You get a lot of sleep but still wake up exhausted.
- You are reaching for the coffee cup a lot more often.
- You are feeling the need to grab your comfort foods all the time. Mine are french fries and ice cream.
- You find that you are getting angry or impatient quicker than normal.
- You get sick a lot. Sinus infections and bronchitis are my red flags.
Bouncing back from burnout can involve rest, taking a vacation and most of all, sleep. But also self-care.
But what is self-care?
I feel like self-care has become such a buzzword term lately. And you are probably thinking it means taking a hot bubble bath while drinking some wine. Or getting a mani / pedi or having a spa day. But not necessarily.
Everyone's self-care routines will be different. So find what works for you. Figure out what self-care means to you. How do you fill up your cup? What are you doing for yourself? What are you doing to recharge?
Self-care could be simply spending some time alone. Or going for a walk. And how you recharge may be different based on whether you are an introvert or an extrovert.
Here are some ideas to build self-care into your day.
- Exercise. Find something you enjoy and make sure to do it a couple of times a week.
- Rest. The whole #teamnosleep culture is no bueno. If you need help, here are some strategies.
- Ask your boss for a mental health day.
- Take a yoga class.
- Dance it out. If you want to learn some moves to popular songs, check out the Fitness Marshall.
- Work on a jigsaw puzzle.
- Spend some time cleaning or decluttering your space.
- Go to the park and read outside.
- Say “no” to more things.
- Start a “You're Awesome” file in your Evernote and fill it with great things people say about you. This was a tip from my friend Saya.
- Subscribe to the Girls' Night In newsletter.
- Write. Journal.
- Set aside 5-10 minutes a day and write down what you are grateful for.
- Take a day off from your side hustle and your day job.
- Take time for lunch and actually go outside and get away from your desk to eat lunch.
- Schedule “white space” into your calendar where you're not required to do anything.
- Surround yourself with other side hustlers who can cheer you on and help you with challenges.
- Celebrate. Even the baby steps.
- Get a massage or a pedicure (the foot massage is my favorite part).
- Have brunch or dinner with your girlfriends.
- Take a multivitamin. These are my fave.
- Take yourself out on a date.
- Hang out with your girlfriends.
- Look at your list of to-dos and see if there is anything draining your energy. Can you delegate it? Delete it?
- Make sure you are eating right.
- And drinking enough water.
- Get crafty. Use your hands to do some painting, coloring or knitting.
- Take time to sit down and sip a cup of tea.
- Snuggle with your pet or little one.
- Volunteer. Giving back can be good for the soul.
- Listen to a Shine meditation.
- Binge your favorite show on Netflix.
- Have a technology free hour or day.
- Read or listen to an audiobook. Here are some of my faves.
- Ask a friend for help.
- Treat yourself. Get some ice cream or buy yourself a present.
- Take a few minutes and breathe. With your belly.
Doing a little bit of self-care and adding it to your day can help you avoid burnout. Try one of these tips for one week and see how you feel.
What are some of your self-care tips? How are you avoiding burnout?
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