3 things to bring back passion when you are burned out...
"I really didn’t have any perspective on the things I should do to feel better or set boundaries in my work. I didn’t know where to begin because changing things in my life seemed overwhelming." -Amy
Business owners and professionals are great producers. I bet no one can keep their nose to the grindstone and churn out results the way you can. No one can follow through and get it done, muscle past the obstacles, and put in more hours than you.
Something I've observed in this cycle. Often when the QUANTITY of hours and tasks goes up....the QUALITY of results goes down.
It's not enough these days to just work harder than anybody else. Those who are achieving success and having fun doing it are those who are focused on the quality of their thinking, performance and creativity.
The challenge is interrupting our old habits and stopping long enough to look around and observe what needs to change and how.
Most business owners I meet don't know what they would do instead of constantly pushing themselves to the limit. And they get really uncomfortable when I start talking about practices that will put them back in the driver seat of their life, their health, and their career.
So here are three practices that when done consistently, will start to make the space for you to perform at a higher and more joyful level, to reclaim some of the passion you had for your work.
1) Morning Power-Up Practices.
I learned this from Tony Robbins, and it has been a game-changer. No need for coffee when you are connecting with your vision and starting from excitement and enthusiasm.
Set aside 15 minutes in the morning. Start with deep breathing into your belly and begin to focus on three specific things that you are deeply grateful for. I'm talking about things that you feel such gratitude for that it makes your heart throb. If you can't find one, you are not looking at your life hard enough.
Second, think of one to three projects or tasks that you are currently working on and visualize them completed. I like to do this with my most important project for that day, one goal I have for that month, and one goal I have for the year.
Third, ask yourself, "How can I love more?"
I know this sounds "coachy." But the purpose behind this question is to look at how you are relating to yourself, your family, your employees, your friends. What areas require attention and kindness from you?
2) Put limits on your time.
Please, just do it. Nothing leads to more distraction, interruption, and loss of effectiveness than a lack of limits.
By limit I mean establish when you start your work day and when you finish it. Block out time for focused work on your big project of the day, email, when you will return phone calls, when you will schedule meetings, when you are available to your team, mealtimes, and family time.
I also suggest blocking out weekly time to think about your business or career, connect with your desires, and look forward to where you are headed.
It is this constant pull in many different directions, the interruptions to our work as a leader and development of the business, that cause mental fatigue and burnout. You have probably experienced the effect of having deeply focused work time, don't you always achieve more in half the time?
3) Playtime is non-negotiable.
Yep. The National Institute for Play has done the research. And they now have irrefutable proof that play and fun is what gives people a competitive edge. To quote Stuart Brown, the founder of the National Institute for Play; "Play leads to brain plasticity, adaptability, and creativity... Nothing fires up the brain like play."
If you have children, this is a great opportunity to experience fun with them and remind yourself of what you loved to do as a child. Otherwise, start trying new things until you find what lights you up. Music classes, Sports teams or outdoor activities on Meetup.com, Volunteer opportunities at the SPCA, Travel groups, Art classes, all of these are great places to start.
As Amy described after 6 months of these practices, and changes to her dietary habits;
"Since working with Rachel I've gained a greater perspective on the changes I needed to make to become more confident and energetic. I've lost weight (and continue to lose), developed new interests and hobbies, and cut down on the amount of hours that I work. I have more time to spend with those I really care about."
Power-Up, Time Limits, and Play. That's a solid plan to take back your passion.