How to Recover from Burnout Without Negatively Impacting Your Business

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Franchisee burnout

Avoiding burnout seems to be the focus of a nationwide movement at the moment - but what happens if you’re already experiencing the symptoms of burnout? There are ways to restore the balance without compromising your work. Here’s how to start taking care of your mental health and recovering from burnout, all while keeping your business afloat.

Running your own business can be exhausting; there are highs and lows, both financially and emotionally, and the constant pressure can take its toll. Some people live with burnout every day, and try to power through without thinking about their personal wellbeing - but this should be the exception, not the rule.

Previously, we’ve written about the 12 ways to avoid burnout as a franchisee, but here we’re exploring the best methods to recover from burnout if you’re already starting to suffer. 

How to recover from burnout while running your own business

1. Ask for help and delegate tasks

You may be the top dog in your business, but you don’t have to suffer alone if you’re experiencing the symptoms of burnout. Find your peers and share your concerns to start safeguarding your mental health. 

If you’re running a franchise business, get in touch with your franchisor; after all, you pay them for their support and guidance. 

You should also consider delegating tasks to lessen your workload. Instead of wasting time and effort trying to overcome challenges alone, build a team of trusted employees and distribute the jobs between them.

2. Take opportunities to socialise 

When you’re running your own business, it’s easy to settle into a routine, spending your days working alone to get all your tasks done as quickly and efficiently as possible. This approach could work in short-term bursts, but in the long run, you’ll become unproductive and unmotivated if you don’t get out into the world and socialise. 

Even introverts benefit from networking opportunities, so don’t pass up any chances to get talking. Whether you accept an invitation to a business conference, a local event or just a meal out with friends, make sure you mingle with others on a regular basis. 

You don’t necessarily have to discuss your business challenges; just chatting should help you unwind and gain some perspective on your work life.

3. Work smarter, not harder

This phrase often comes up in relation to avoiding burnout - and for good reason. Working every hour of every day doesn’t necessarily bring success; in fact, you can achieve much better results by optimising your schedule. 

So, get organised and take some time to prioritise and plan your work. Rather than trying to rush through as many tasks as you can manage, pick the projects with the most potential to provide value and complete them to a high standard. 

4. Combat indecision

You’ll make some important decisions during your time as a business owner, but most of the choices you face on a daily basis need less thought. By overthinking things, we often waste precious time and energy. 

In many cases, our gut instinct is correct. But when you need to weigh up the pros, cons and implications, aim to proceed pragmatically, without getting bogged down with insignificant details or allowing yourself to worry.

5. Learn when to stop

As a business owner, you could keep working forever, adapting growth strategies, tweaking operational procedures and continuing market research - and if you’re a perfectionist, you may be tempted to. 

The trick is to understand your limits. Set goals and decide what you want to achieve each day, and establish the point at which you’ll stop and accept your work is good enough. Make sure you shut down your computer and enjoy leisure time when you reach your specified stop point. 

6. Say ‘no’

Many business owners are continually hit with requests; from clients, customers and employees, as well as friends and family. You probably can’t meet all of them while maintaining a healthy work/life balance, so you’ll need to prioritise some of the tasks and politely decline or defer the others.

Take some time to work out which jobs will be most beneficial to you and your business, and which can be put off for the time being. This step is a crucial part of recovering from burnout. 

7. Develop realistic expectations

It’s easy to become overexcited by the prospect of new leads, income streams or other opportunities. After all, you wouldn’t be an entrepreneur if you didn’t value business growth and professional development. But there’s a fine line between being ambitious and unrealistic. 

Often, carefully considered strategies don’t quite go to plan, so it’s important not to set yourself up for a big disappointment. While you should map out your route to success and lay the foundations for a profitable business venture, try to avoid becoming consumed by the potential outcomes you envisage.

8. Don’t overpromise

By developing realistic expectations, you avoid putting pressure on yourself. By not overpromising when it comes to clients, you stop others putting pressure on you.

In all likelihood, your customers know how great you are - they’ve probably seen your marketing material, read your testimonials and talked to friends. So, don’t feel you have to impress them further by overstating the service you can provide before you’ve completed the job. 

While you should aim to live up to your reputation with a high-quality offering, it’s always better to over-deliver than overpromise - both for your business and for your personal wellbeing.

Taking care of your mental health is vital when you’re running a franchise business

We understand how important it is for franchisees and franchisors alike to recover from burnout as quickly as possible. We’ve created a series of guides centred on mental health, focussing on everything from the toxic habits you should be avoiding to tips and tricks to protect your wellbeing and great podcasts you can enjoy. Just use the search box to find more articles like these ones.

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