3 Tactics To Break Free From Burnout
If you are anything like me, you may often find yourself excelling personally and professionally, feeling inspired and motivated.
However, there are times when suddenly everything becomes challenging, and you find yourself in a rut.
Been there, done that. Bought the t-shirt.
In fact, I've had more than my fair share of career valleys, ditches, and gullies.
What I've learned is that it's not so much what happens to you in your career, it's how you respond to what's happening that makes the difference - good or bad.
Throughout my career I've had to learn to navigate these shifts.
I've devised a practical set of principles to help me better manage the dips that, when managed well, usually lead me up the mountain again to new and exciting opportunities.
My three-step approach to overcome a career rut is as follows:
1/ Interrupt the downward spiral,
2/ Redefine your trajectory,
3/ Ignite purposeful action.
Ruts happen inevitably.
When they do, slow down, navigate through them patiently, and avoid intensifying your efforts, which could prolong your recovery.
Focus on methodically working through the challenges that block your path forward.
Balancing Unreasonable Demands & Burnout
You know this in your heart and feel it in your bones - Teaching's complex demands often leave you balancing inspiration and burnout.
Transitioning from the classroom to a new profession that prioritizes your work/life balance and mental health is a bold and scary proposition that demands strategic guidance.
Understanding that you are not prone to making rash decisions that can alter the trajectory of your life, and that of your family, I have outlined my proven 3 step method for overcoming professional ruts for you to consider.
This simple method has helped me survive being laid off from what I thought was my dream job at the time, to being fired 2x for speaking up for my staff in the face of maltreatment and having resigned from highly lucrative sales and leadership positions to build my own professional pathways.
3 Steps To Transformative Career Change
Step 1: Interrupt the Downward Spiral
"When you interrupt a career descent, you reclaim the power to rewrite your professional narrative with triumph over adversity." - Les Brown
In the midst of stress and burnout, recognizing the signs is crucial.
Once firing on all cylinders, both personally and professionally, you may suddenly find yourself grappling with overwhelming and unexpected difficulties.
An increased workload, lack of administrative support, and toxicity in the workplace are typical in education today.
It's here that you must interrupt the negative loop.
Acknowledge self-imposed pressure, grant yourself the space for essential recuperation, eliminate internal dialogue that undermines your worth, and acknowledge the need for rest.
This isn't a sign of surrender but a strategic retreat to rebuild resilience.
Step 2: Redefine Your Trajectory
"In the face of adversity, reflection becomes the compass guiding your journey to resilience and growth." - John C. Maxwell
Internally reflect on your role in perpetuating the cycle of stress.
Are you buying into the narrative that you should be able to handle the extra work without batting an eye?
Identify actions, mindsets, or patterns that contribute to your burnout and hinder your well-being.
What are you accepting that you should be rejecting?
Externally, evaluate your work environment.
Does it foster a healthy work/life balance?
Consider changes, whether big or small, that align with your vision of a fulfilling professional life.
Envision the ideal version of yourself navigating a career with respect for mental health.
One question I like to ask myself and my clients is this:
What does an ideal work day look like?
Write down what your ideal day entails in detail.
From the time you wake up to the time you stop working.
Where are you?
What are you doing?
Who are you with?
How do you feel?
Step 3: Ignite Purposeful Action
"Fortune favors the bold who take action, not those who passively wait for fate to unfold." - Seneca
Initiate movement, no matter how incremental.
Break down your transition into manageable tasks.
Instead of waiting for inspiration to strike, create it through deliberate action.
Whether refining your resume, researching alternative industries, or networking for a focused 15 minutes, these measured steps accumulate into meaningful progress toward a career that prioritizes your well-being.
Embrace the ebb and flow of professional motivation as part of the journey.
Ruts will happen.
When they do, resist the urge to push harder.
Allow yourself to work through these challenging moments at your pace.
Pushing yourself harder risks sidelining you for longer periods of time.
And that keeps you right where you are today.
Remember, you're transition to a better career is a marathon, not a sprint.
Seek support when needed, recognizing that persistent effort is a testament to your commitment.
You're not alone in this endeavor; our community stands ready to offer support.
Important Note: While these steps can be transformative, they are not a substitute for professional mental health support. If you find your burnout rooted in deeper issues, consider seeking advice from a mental health professional or confiding in a trusted friend, or coach who has lived experience in your area of concern.
Each purposeful step brings you closer to a professional life that respects your well-being.
You will get where you need to be.
Until next week,