Entrepreneurs dedicate most of their time and effort to their small businesses. These endeavors are, after all, their dream and no one else has the passion and concern that they have to make them succeed. There is nothing wrong with hard work and dedication, but even people who love their companies will suffer when they have an imbalance in their lives for too long. Neglecting their own health and not relaxing or enjoying time away from corporate worries can lead to burnout. It is a problem that will derail dreams faster than the economy, a bad business decision or a weekend away.
What is Entrepreneurial Burnout?
Burnout occurs when people give out more energy and time to their work than they give back to themselves in rest and relaxation. It doesn’t happen after a week or two or strike suddenly. It creeps up on people over a period of time. Many entrepreneurs are unaware of the issue until someone close to them points out the common warning signs. The easiest way for it to happen is to believe that burn out is impossible or imagining that simply because a person has achieved their dream of having their own company they will always be happy. These mistaken beliefs only increase the level of guilt an entrepreneur has when they realize they want to run away.
Signs of Being Burned Out
There are a number of physical and mental signs of burnout. Physical problems include frequent headaches, body aches and exhaustion. Many become more susceptible to colds or just frequently feel unwell. Memory loss, unexplained anger and bouts of depression are common mental and emotional concerns. People are stressed out, unable to think of anything except work and may begin to have problems in their relationships. In severe cases some entrepreneurs eventually stop caring about their work quality and begin to neglect their families and their own health due to feelings of hopelessness.
Why Entrepreneurs are More Susceptible to Burnout
The issue of entrepreneur burnout is common simply because so much is resting on the shoulders of people running their own company. They have to worry about paying the bills, keeping clients happy and managing their employees. These responsibilities are in addition to caring for their families and worrying about their personal expenses. They cannot walk away from their own business the way they could with a traditional job. They are the ones that have to resolve all conflicts.
How to Prevent Burnout
Being an entrepreneur will always be stressful, but there are ways to avoid burnout. The first step is to build a strong work team as soon as possible. This allows the owner to delegate work to others and remove some of the responsibility from themselves. Creating a schedule is another important step. Giving permission for time off lets people have hobbies, spend time with friends and family members and take long, rejuvenating vacations.
Schedule a vacation immediately. Do not put it off to finish up work or wait until it is a “good time”. If you’re one of those ‘easiest way possible’ types, something like a cruise or houseboat are perfect for your vacation. They’re cozy and convenient, but also offer amazing luxury. The views are stunning, there is plenty of privacy and everything is contained in one place. This is a vacation without a busy itinerary. If you’re one of those ‘all or nothing’ people, you’ll probably want to try out at least one of these 50 once in a lifetime travel experiences instead, and experience something with a greater sense of adventure.
Owning a business is a big responsibility and the person at the top is important to the entire organization. Entrepreneurs often refuse to take time off because they worry the company will suffer without them. However, there really are only two options. Number one, They can disappear for a couple of weeks each year and return rejuvenated and with a fresh outlook or number two, they work 365 days a year feeling uninspired, unhappy and allow their health (and business) to suffer. The risk of burning out running your business is real and it is serious. Buy a swimsuit, dust off the fishing gear and schedule a vacation today!