Being an entrepreneur and running your own business can be rewarding and help you create more freedom in your life, but the reality is those rewards only come after the work – and there’s a lot of it. You’ll find yourself working long hours and hustling. This can lead to feeling burnt out – and I don’t want that for you!
If you’re trying to figure out how to avoid burnout as an entrepreneur, I have a couple of important tips to help set you on the right path (as someone who has been there before – a few times ;)). These are things that I have had to learn the hard way, and implementing all of these tips into my own business has helped me tremendously.
So, let’s dive into my top tips for how to avoid burnout as an entrepreneur.
Top Tips for How to Avoid Burnout as an Entrepreneur
Have a coach/mentor
Having a coach or a mentor can be a game-changer when it comes to running your own business. First, these are going to be people who were in the exact same position as you.
As an entrepreneur, it can be hard for other people to relate to the struggles you are facing in your business. Other people who work conventional jobs aren’t going to be able to understand the ins and outs of your everyday life and everything that goes along with running your own business.
However, a coach or a mentor will. They have been in your shoes and know exactly what you are going through. Whether you are just starting out or are working to scale your business to the next level, they can help you navigate the waters without drowning.
Investing in a coach not only gives you someone who can understand the position you are in, but it also gives you someone who can help you organize your thoughts, make a game plan for your business, and keep you accountable.
They can be your community and give you someone to reach out to when you need a little support or need help figuring out what the next step in your business should be. Investing in a business mentor is invaluable and can help you go from stressed and overwhelmed to confident and organized.
I want to note, not everyone NEEDS a coach, but in my experience, the right coach can get you to the next level without the burnout. Choose to invest in a coach when you feel stuck and need an individualized approach OR you want to have someone who will guide you to your next phase of business.
Take your power back
Take your power back when it comes to your business. YOU are running this business, and you get to decide how you want to do it. There are going to be a million different people out there telling you a million different things, but you have the ultimate choice.
If you start doing something and find out you don’t like doing it, just stop. Don’t feel pressured into offering a product or service just because other people in your industry offer it. You have your own unique business, and you can own it and run it however you please. (That’s literally why we all did this right?)
Hire a lawyer for peace of mind
Hire a lawyer! This is such an important part of how to avoid burnout as an entrepreneur, and it’s one that most business owners will skip (or wait a while to do). I promise you; this is not something you want to wait on.
Hiring a lawyer can help you SO much when it comes to avoiding burnout and running your business more smoothly. There are two main reasons I would suggest hiring a lawyer.
It’s important to work with a lawyer to either draft your contracts or look over them to make sure there are not any holes in them. Some will even have template shops where you can purchase templated contracts, policy pages, and more.
C-Suite is one that I highly recommend and you can use my affiliate link here to purchase different templates to use in your business!
Your contracts are important when it comes to providing services or selling products in your business. This is not only how you are going to lay out what the details of the project are, but also things like timelines, cancellation policies, refunds, arbitration, and so much more. You want your contracts to be clear while also working for you. Two major things that can contribute to entrepreneur burnout are scope creeping and not sticking to timelines. When it comes to timelines, you set these up to make sure that
- You and the client know exactly what is going to happen and when.
- To help you plan out your own schedule and know when you have projects and when you can schedule new clients in.
It gets very stressful and overwhelming when clients miss deadlines, project timelines start to bleed over into each other, and all of a sudden, you have 5 projects in different stages, all happening at the same time.
Having a clear contract that lays out the timeline and what happens if your clients miss deadlines or need to push the project to a further date can help to keep your schedule more manageable and make sure you aren’t having to juggle too many things all at once.
Scope creep is another major thing I’ve seen when it comes to working with clients. Whether intentionally or not, you may find clients asking for additional work to be done or trying to expand what their project entails (without actually increasing their investment with you). However, having a contract that explicitly states what is included in the scope of the project can help you stand firm and avoid this issue. If a client does try to scope creep, you can fall back on the contract and address the issue by stating that what they are asking for is out of the scope of the contract that they signed and if they would like for you to complete the additional services they are requesting, you can do that for an additional fee.
The second reason it is important to hire a lawyer is for trademark reasons. Trademarking your business is a big step in any entrepreneur’s journey, but it is also one that can provide you with brand protection.
Trademarking ensures that no one can copy you or use your business’s name for their own. It provides you with the legal ground to take action against anyone who infringes on your trademark and gives you more peace of mind. The last thing any entrepreneur wants is to get a few years into their business and run into this issue or realize that the business name they chose can’t be trademarked and have to rebrand after already building an audience. Own and protect your brand.
Have an organized way to automate
Organization is crucial when it comes to running your own business because you are going to be doing everything- at least at the start. From creating contracts to running your social media to actually providing the services you offer, there is a lot that is going on in your day-to-day life.
Creating organized systems that you can automate to help take some things off of your plate and keep your business streamlined There are so many different ways you can do this and many different platforms you can use. Plus, once you build a streamlined (and documented system with an SOP) you can easily train new staff as you grow and scale.
Where to start? One of the easiest things you can automate is your inquiry process. Most CRMs will have the option to send automated emails after someone inquires with you, which can help you stay on top of your leads and make sure you don’t miss anything. Whether this means sending them an automatic proposal or sending them a link to hop on a call with you, having this automated can help take a lot of stress off of you.
I personally use Dubsado and love it. If you are still looking for the perfect CRM, you can use my affiliate link here to get 20% off your first month or year!
Keeping your tasks and projects organized is also so important. With so many things going on, you can start to feel overwhelmed and not know what you have to do and when. There are many platforms out there (like Notion, ClickUp, Asana, etc.) where you can not only set up tasks for yourself based on each project type but also set up dashboards for your clients so you can keep all of the project information in one place.
If you’re looking for something that gives you a starting point, the Notion Headquarters from MSpring Creative is a great place to start. You can use my affiliate link here to help get organized fast!
These systems are something that you should set up as soon as possible and continue to update and add to as your business inevitably changes.
Finally, make sure you are setting boundaries. Now, this can mean a lot of different things. One set of boundaries should definitely be between you and your clients.
An easy way to do this is to set up clear times that you will communicate with your clients and clear methods of how you are going to communicate with them. Set office hours for your business and stick to them. If you say your office hours are 9-5, then make sure you are only answering your clients between those hours.
It’s also important to figure out the best way for you to communicate with your clients. Do you want to stick to just email? Do you care if they DM you? Is it going to make you more overwhelmed if they have your phone number and can text or call you anytime?
These boundaries are important to set with every single client and should be made very clear to them before you start working together so you are both on the same page.
The other set of boundaries you should set is with yourself. These can be things like when you want to work or where you want to work. As entrepreneurs, we can often get lost in our work and find ourselves working 12-14 hour days without even realizing it.
Set a boundary with yourself and make sure that you are taking time away from work to do the things that you love.
Where you work can also play a big role in entrepreneur burnout. Most of us will be working from home, and while there are some amazing things that come with that, there are also some downsides.
A great way to help keep a good work-life balance is to set designated spaces in your home where you can work. This way, you can shut your laptop and walk away from that space when you are done working and feel like you can disconnect.
Entrepreneur Burnout Recovery Tips
While, ideally, we would all be able to find a way to avoid burnout altogether, most of us will find ourselves in that position at some point in our business. If you do get to that point, here are a few entrepreneur burnout recovery tips that I suggest.
Just take a breath. You probably have a lot going on, and sometimes we can forget to just take a step back and breathe. If you find yourself feeling super overwhelmed, working on projects for hours without making any progress, or not knowing what to tackle next, just take a minute to yourself to breathe.
A great way to work this into your everyday life is to carve out a space in your day where you can shut everything down and check in with yourself. Whether this is through meditation, yoga, or controlled breathing, this can help calm your body and reset your mind to help you tackle your to-do list in a more effective and efficient way.
Take a break
Taking breaks is crucial. If you think about it, every person who works a conventional job has breaks built into their schedule every day, so why shouldn’t you have the same things?
Maybe you take a 15-minute break after each task you complete. Maybe you have a set time each day when you go outside for a walk (because, let’s be honest, most of us don’t make it outside as much as we should). Or maybe you shut your computer down while you each lunch and watch an episode of your favorite TV show or read a few chapters of a book.
Whatever it is that helps you decompress and unwind, make sure you are making time in your schedule for that. A few breaks throughout the day can help make all the difference!
Final Thoughts on How to Avoid Burnout as an Entrepreneur
When it comes to how to avoid burnout as an entrepreneur, these tips will help set you on the right path. The most important thing to remember is that every entrepreneur has been in your shoes. You can absolutely bounce back and do it in a more effective way than you were before.
Give yourself space and cut yourself a little bit of slack. This is your business, and you get to run it however you want!