“Our very lives are fashioned by choice. First we make choices. Then our choices make us.” – Anne Frank
As entrepreneurs the chance are previously you will have worked like a trojan. And got to a point where your burning out or you realize your effort is no longer reward but expected. There sadly is a top end value on employees and I learnt this during my time as an employee. It not something to be offended about, it just a sign you have hit the wall and either need to change your role within the business or move on. In my bouts as an employee, I’ve learned that stepping back from the brink is about choice. These 12 choices have helped me recover and be a better IT Manager for my employer and also allowed me to get work / life balance as and entrepreneur right.
Choice #1: Choose to Be Happy
First, happiness is a choice. Choose to be the first one to smile at everybody you meet. Choose to greet your staff and client by name.
Use happy triggers to boost your mood when you get upset. Some people have a Pinterest Board with images of “Happy Thoughts”. Use the method and tools you have in you daily life so the happiness is close to your daily life.
Choice #2: Choose to Disconnect
We are making a dumb use of our smartphones. Instead of freeing us up to go anywhere anytime, they’ve tethered us to a hamster wheel. I used to be tethered to my phone, even I now ensure only selected email is on my phone. If I am working from desk my email is on in the bckground, otherwise if I am out I look at my email around 2-3 times a day. Depending on how many emails are there I could be a few minutes to about 30 minutes.. I deleted my school email off my smartphone after several evenings because of an angry email. (We all get them.) and responding in the same instance is never the right solution, you always better to take time on your response. Unplug at least once a week. Be a human being, not a human doing.
Choice #3: Choose to Be Mindful
Mindfulness is being called society’s next wonder drug. Even the NHS offer mindfulness class, particular to those who suffer with anxiety, stress and mild depression. Some meditate or practice yoga — I write down my plans for what i will do that day, and only that day
Choice #4: Choose to Make Time for Sleep
Lack of Sleep harms your thinking, your health, and your mood. If insomnia continues you can be a huge danger to yourself and others, you can hallucinate and eating patterns alter too. Realize that watching your favorite movie may not be restful when you’re exhausted. Go to sleep early with your cell phone in the kitchen where it can’t wake you.
Choice #5: Choose to Get Outside and Get Moving
Last year when I was in middle of some personal challenges on top of everything else, I was tough going. I now take a 15-minute break during morning every day to just take a breath from the catching up on emails and responding to the urgent matters. Other people I know do the same , and maybe have joined a gym and use their lunch hour to exercise then eat back at the office. The exercise and then the shower and refreshing feeling can mean the rest of the day goes with ease.
A Boston University psychology professor Michael Otto says, “Usually within five minutes after moderate exercise, you get a mood-enhancement effect.” Exercise is shown to be a powerful intervention for clinical depression, diabetes, and anxiety. Even five minutes of green exercise (outdoors) is also shown to boost your mood. So get outside and exercise.
Choice #6: Choose to Be Grateful
Research shows that keeping a gratitude journal will “increase your long-term well-being more than winning a million dollars in the lottery.”I use Evernote to do this and try towrite in it every day.
Choice #7: Choose What to Overlook
“The greatest remedy for anger is delay.” – Seneca
Understand that you’re working with others who are almost (if not more) burned out than you. Therefore, count on everyone being fussy, cranky, and tired. Let it go. Local Studies show that patients who’ve had heart attacks can improve their well-being by practicing forgiveness and working to be less angry. Sometimes our biggest enemy is the perfect person we try to be.
Choice #8: Choose the Battles Worth Fighting
Most situations that managers in employment and even Entrepreneurs who are on projects regret “caving in on” are those that happen in these exhausting end-of-project (task) months. The stakeholders are emotional as D day for new programme of work will start. End user are emotional as nobody like change, and we project team are tired of fighting the battles of constant re specifcation. Choose to fight only for what matters.
Choice #9: Choose What to Do Next Time and What to Stop Doing
You need to learn to say “next time” instead of “if only.” Make the mistakes of your past a signpost, not a hitching post. Remember your mistakes, but keep your eyes facing front toward your current surroundings.
There are times to say, “There will not be a next time. Enough.” Some places should be left. Some relationships should be severed. Some organizations should become part of your past. Not all the time, but sometimes.
Choice #10: Choose to Enjoy the Relationships That Matter
Don’t be so busy making a living that you forget to make time for living. You have relationships and hobbies. Keep them in your life. When facing stress/burnout, I plot my big projects on a chart based upon my “upset factor” (on the left) and how quickly I can get the work done (on the top). Set an appointment for each task.
Choice #11: Choose to Make a Schedule and Priority List
This is far from a new idea but you should shares the things that you schedule on a calendar. The is a better chance that if they are on a calander that they are more likely to be the “done” items that you check off your list. Schedule important tasks.
Choice #12: Choose to Finish Well
No matter how you started the year, choose to finish it well. This is also your decision. In the long run, a burned out person is of no use to there clients or themselves. You can choose to step back. You can do this! Your calling is noble, but you must sometimes regroup and adjust to make it.