Words By Tara Wagner

Recovering from Burnout: How to Handle Burnout as an Entrepreneur

Pouring coffee into a mugh that says

There’s a lot of information out there on how to avoid burnout, but I want to talk to you about how to handle burnout, especially as an entrepreneur, and especially when you already feel like you’re suffocating in it. I’m going to walk you through three really crucial stages of recovering from burnout that are going to help you to get back on track and stay that way.

Watch here or read below.

Recovering from Burnout: How to Handle Burnout as an Entrepreneur Click To Tweet

Boy do I have a lot of experience around recovering from burnout. I think this is a really common thing for female entrepreneurs to come up against, especially if you are an overachiever or a high achiever, if you’re passionate about what you do, or if you just maybe have the tendency to take on a little but too much.

I want you to take a deep breath and really tune in to what I’m about to say below.

The advice I’m going to give you is hard-earned, and it’s simple. I promise I’m not going to ask you to do more, because heaven knows, you don’t need any more to do.

But I AM going to ask you to do things differently.

So while it might be simple, it might not feel easy.

But you know what?

Feeling burnt out doesn’t feel easy either, and as Les Brown says, “If you do what is easy, your life will be hard. But if you do what is hard, your life will be easy.”

Let’s look at some simple but potentially difficult changes you can make or shifts that you can create to help you get back on track in recovering from this burnout, okay?

And hey, just a word of encouragement before we jump in, this too shall pass.

It may pass like a freakin’ kidney stone, but it will pass.

STEP 1: TREAT IT LIKE TRIAGE

Step number one of recovering from burnout is to treat it like triage.

You have GOT to be willing to treat your well-being as a state of emergency before it becomes one, because the natural outcome to continuing on this path that you’re on is legit burnout and landing yourself in the ER.

And if you don’t think that’s possible, do some googling. Stress is deadly.

You have GOT to be willing to treat your well-being as a state of emergency before it becomes one. – Tara Wagner Click To Tweet

So, what would you do differently if there was a real emergency?

If you actually were in the ER, or your child or your partner were in the ER, or there was a natural disaster happening, what would be put to the back burner?

I know you feel like you don’t have time to put these things off, but when you look at it through the lens of “if this were an actual emergency, what would then happen”, we suddenly begin to realize that crazy amount of things get done when we’re prioritizing what has to be managed first.

If you’ve ever been through an emergency, you know what I’m talking about.

Everything stops for that emergency, and yet you’re still able to pick up where you left off and still get things done.

Now, yes, your deadlines might change, your timelines might change…your stress levels, though? They’re going to change with them.

When you’re feeling good, you’re going to be able to do more and do better.

So, what can you take off of your plate as though this were an emergency, as though you absolutely had no other choice?

What would you be able to let go of in your business, in your home, or in your life? What can you flake out on? What can you say no to? What deadlines can you change? What timelines can you change?

Now, I know this might be especially difficult if you’re struggling financially.

You don’t want to take things off your plate if you feel like they’re going to help you pay your bills.

But I still just want you to focus on what you can do.

There are a lot of things that you’re doing in your life right now that are not helping you to pay your bills, right? What can you do to take those off your plate?

And don’t forget to reach out for support.

I know that can feel really difficult. I know sometimes we feel like nobody else can do it quite as well as we can. That might be why we ended up burnt out in the first place.

But I want you to remember that having somebody else do it imperfectly is better than you doing and killing yourself to get there.

So who could you ask for support? Maybe your partner, your kids, your family, your friends, your neighbors. Maybe even your own customer base.

I know it feels uncomfortable, but this is one of the most important things that you’re ever going to learn how to do…to say, “Hey, I’m not a superhero. I actually do need help from time to time, and this is one of those times.”

That’s step number one, to treat it like triage. Have those hard conversations, make those hard cuts to take things off your plate as though you were in a state of emergency because you actually are.

girl on ouch with book, coffee, and blanket

STEP 2: RADICAL SELF-CARE

Step number two of recovering from burnout is radical self-care.

Now, to me radical self-care means making those hard decisions, making those hard cuts so that you can prioritize your well-being in a way that other people wouldn’t.

Radical self-care means making hard decisions and hard cuts, so that you can prioritize your well-being in a way that other people wouldn't. – Tara Wagner Click To Tweet

Here’s why this is important:

All of our emotions come from our needs, so negative emotions come from unmet needs.

The feeling of being burnt out comes from too many needs going unmet for too long.

Radical self-care is about assessing those needs and doing a whole lot all at once to address those needs.

Now, when it comes to assessing your needs, I recommend using Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs.

Abraham Maslow created this Hierarchy of Human Needs, and basically what he says is that you’ve got to start from the bottom and move your way up.

Now, for me what this looks like is starting with those baseline physiological needs, so I always make sure I’m:

  • getting a lot of really good quality sleep as well as mental rest.
  • Mental rest for me means turning things off.
  • I’m not listening to podcasts.
  • I’m not reading the news.
  • I’m not on Facebook
  • I am shutting down anything that is going to be more input for my brain so that I can give my brain a rest.
  • I also make sure that I’m increasing my nutrition
  • So this is really good quality food along with supplementation,
  • As well as something like a magnesium supplement or Epsom salt baths so you’re getting that magnesium in your body to help your body handle those stress levels.
  • Also making sure you’re getting really good hydration,
  • And then I always use a lot of essential oils to help my nervous system, to help my adrenals, and to just help my body to sleep better and to manage the stress better.

A few of my favorite essential oils are gonna be Peace and Console, which I’ve done some videos on recently that you can check out.

These are going to be calming to the nervous system and to the mind, and they help me to get really deep quality sleep.

I also use an oil called Helichrysum, which is a good oil for what can feel like emotional trauma.

And then I use an oil called Basil. This I’ll actually use over my adrenals, which is in the middle of your back. It helps to support the adrenals, it increases my energy levels a little bit, and it just helps me to repair any damage that might be happening as I’m recovering from burnout.

Comment below with the word “radical” if you feel like radical self-care is exactly what you need right now.

STEP 3: DO THE INNER WORK

Step number three is to do the inner work to know what needs to change from the inside out.

After triage, after radical self care, after your needs are being met, after you’re feeling better, then it’s time to start looking within and understand the patterns that got you here in the first place.

Remember when I said our emotions are driven by our needs?

Well, our needs are driven by patterns in our habits and in our beliefs.

Understanding what those patterns are can help you to identify the triggers, it can help you to identify your red flags, it will help you to identify any of the things that you need to be working on so that you don’t keep getting yourself into this place.

Some examples of what can be causing your burnout:

  • I’ve had clients do this inner work and realize that their burnout was driven by a fear of money. They were constantly feeling like they had to work, they had to work, they had to work because “money was hard”, because it was “difficult to make money”. All of these beliefs around money that didn’t actually show up in their life but that were in their heads and in their hearts, and so it drove their habits and their patterns and drove them into burnout.
  • I’ve had other clients who discovered that they just never felt good enough, and so they had to keep going, and keep trying, and keep doing more, and get more certificates, and put out more work because then that would help them to feel good enough. And when it didn’t, they had to keep doing it and keep doing it until they were driven to burnout.
  • Even in my own life, I’ve experienced patterns of burnout many times over the past few decades. And oftentimes it would be related to this idea that I had to do it all myself, that there wasn’t support for me, or that I couldn’t ask for help. 
  • And sometimes it’s just a matter of being passionate about what we’re doing! We love what we’re doing, but we have this false idea that that means we don’t ever need to take a break from it, we don’t ever need to stop and refill our cups.

Whatever that habit or pattern might be that is driving your behaviors, that’s driving your ability to meet your needs, it’s important to know what it is so that you can start to identify it and shift those patterns that are happening in your life around burnout.

I KNOW THIS PROCESS OF INNER WORK CAN FEEL A LITTLE BEWILDERING.

Like, where do you even start?

But I’ve created a free training to help you through that process.

It teaches my exact coaching framework.

This is a process that I’ve developed to help myself and my clients break through our limiting beliefs, our bad habits, the things that lead to burnout as well as other challenges in our business. And this self-awareness will be an important piece of recovering from burnout.

It’s going to explain:

  • the only five things you need to know about yourself in order to identify these patterns and these habits, the things that are leading to things like burnout.
  • And then it’s going to teach a really simple process to show you how to stop those patterns from reoccurring.
IT’S CALLED BOTTLENECKS TO BREAKTHROUGHS, AND YOU CAN GET IT FREE BY CLICKING THE BUTTON BELOW.
WHAT ABOUT YOU, BOSS LADY?

Leave me a comment below and let me know which of these 3 steps to recovering from burnout feels most needed for you, even if it’s the hardest.

And don’t forget to share this with your hard-working business besties!

xoTara-teal

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