Business Brief December 2014

Posted in Business
03/12/2014 Level One

Ways to Avoid Burnout

Burnout is a big issue facing many people today, caused by an inability to maintain a sense of balance in life. Use these ideas to help you to avoid burnout and achieve more balance.

I have personally experienced burnout – and I was to blame. So I can speak from personal experience when I say that the price we pay is too high.

Frankly, it is almost impossible to have total balance in your life. There are always too many demands, issues, problems, needs, goals and people to deal with. It is possible however, to have enough balance to reduce the stress in your life while enjoying many of the gifts life has to offer.

At any given time we can be out of balance if we are not careful. For example, if you have just started a new business or career, if you have just had your first child or you are in a new relationship. During these times, you will most likely devote more time and energy to these activities, while ignoring some of the other important areas of your life.

However, problems are created if we stay out of balance in one or more area of our life for too long. What are some of the reasons why people get out of balance?

A lack of clear long-term goals

Some people literally don’t know where they are going or where they intend to arrive. If you don’t know exactly where you are going, how would you know if you have arrived yet or not?

The inability to say no

Some people take on too much. They say yes to everyone. “Of course I can have it done by tomorrow”, “No problem, leave it with me”.

Trying to please everyone

This is often a version of the previous one. I’ve worked out that by trying to please everyone we can burn ourselves out, and be no good for anyone – especially those we love and care about.

A lack of concentration and focus

If you’ve ever watched a lion stalking its prey in the wild, they do not chase the herd of Antelope, they focus on one beast only, and concentrate on achieving that one goal – lunch! So it is with us as goal-seeking human beings. We are happiest when we have a goal and a focus.

Emotional immaturity

Sometimes we let things upset us that really shouldn’t. Instead of taking a mature emotional attitude of “responding”, we “react” – often without thinking, burning up energy, getting upset and perhaps upsetting other people too, when we would have been better off thinking first and then responding in a more appropriate manner. Often more easily said than done, but a habit worth developing.

Unrealistic goals

Believe me, I am one for setting goals and creating plans for achieving them. I teach it and I do it. But setting unrealistic goals can lead very quickly to burnout. It’s sometimes said there is no such thing as un-realistic goals, only un-realistic time frames. There is some wisdom in that too. Trying to achieve a goal too quickly can lead to burnout.

A lack of self-respect

I am guilty of treating myself in ways that I would never have allowed others to do, expecting that I can work excessive hours without a break. How about you?

A lack of planning

You’d be surprised how many business people and salespeople I know that get up in the morning and just let the day happen to them. They wonder why they feel stressed, out of control and lurch from one crisis to another. I personally like to plan the night before and then let my unconscious mind further develop the plan as I sleep. I also sleep better knowing what I am doing the next day – and with my often busy schedule – what time to get up.

Poor time management and organisation skills

Trying to fit too much into a day will stress you and everyone around you. Taking the time to get organised and plan the use of your time each day is essential – and I also mean scheduling in time with your family and loved ones and time just for yourself. Like all skills, time management and organisation skills can be learnt.


Author Credits

Wayne Berry CSP is CEO of Top Gun Business Academy and well-recognised speaker on Sales, Sales Management and Negotiating. He has a video blog where you can view 3-4 minute video tips at and subscribe. For further information Phone: +61 3 9521 0500 or visit



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