I recently wrote an article on burnout and how to avoid it. I felt it only fair to write one about how to actually deal with burnout, because it's going to happen. And sometimes it's better to deal with things straight on, instead of avoiding them right?
I've dealt with burnout on many levels. I have had periods where I felt no creativity, no drive at all. I have had other times where I was simply exhausted with the schedule I was enduring day in and day out. Each time, I learned different strategies in how to work through these times in order to get to the next chapter. Here are those stories.
I Hate All of My Clients
Clearly that is a harsh statement. And if you have been on my website at all, spoken to me ever, or been on my social media, you would see in there that I LOVE training and teaching! I have been fortunate enough to forge ahead these last 17 years to continue to do what I love, even when I hate it. Let me explain.
During my MBA, my days were stacked. I was managing full time, going to school full time, training 15 hours a week, and of course meal prepping, working out, and trying to sleep. Those years were formidable in me really learning how to get shit done and manage multiple things at the same time.
But what also happened was I was so caught up in my own world, that I started to have less empathy towards others, specifically my clients and my trainers. I didn't understand why they didn't want to work as hard as me. Why can't they just meal prep? Why can't my trainer figure out the new computer system we just switched to?
I was completely detached from what I was doing and essentially just focused on my goals. There are good parts to that of course. I was driven, I had an end game, and I was making it happen. Yet, I was in the middle of a career that is PEOPLE driven. I was not connecting with those around me, meaning I was actually letting them down.
I had forgotten why I was in the career that I was so deeply connected with. I was missing the little moments of clients making small steps, or a trainer finally making a sale on their own. I needed to remember that meeting people where they are at is a daily MUST in our industry. You never know where peolpe are coming from, or what they are going through.
Sometimes you need to take a step back and review the full picture. And you need to stay connected with your people, even when it's hard.
I Ran Out of Goals
So this round of burnout was sort of the other side of my last chapter. I finished my MBA, ended a long-term relationship, and had absolutely no direction in my life.
I was 30 years old and had checked all of the boxes. I had both an undergrad and MBA, multiple certifications, a great job in management that I had nearly doubled the size of my team, been involved in our trainer onboarding program and done all of this being debt free.
I was on my own, and felt like I had hit all of the mile markers I was "supposed" to hit by this time. I messed up the whole getting married thing (for now), and wasn't even sure if I wanted to stay in Chicago. It was a really hard time for me. My friends were already married or on their way, and also starting to have kids. I felt alone, and had no plan.
I had forgotten why I was in the career that I was so deeply connected with. I was missing the little moments of clients making small steps, or a trainer finally making a sale on their own. I needed to remember that meeting people where they are at is a daily MUST in our industry. You never know where relationship are coming from, or what they are going through.to.
This chapter in my life taught me that sometimes you just need to BE. You just need to exist. Not every year do you need to accomplish a dozen things. Sometimes it's those times that allow you to refocus and realize where you are supposed to be in life. It gives you the strength to start over, or simply make a detour.
Life is a journey, not a destination. There will be times of burnout. Take these moments as an opportunity to learn more about you. Take the pause, embrace it, and see what comes out the other side. Wishing you luck on your next chapter.