To Beat Burnout, Assess How You’re Spending Your Time

Beating burnouts, the first step is assessing how you’re spending your time. Relentless stress can easily lead to burnout, but it doesn’t have to.

Reassess your schedule and make time for self-care. Start by taking a few minutes to look at exactly how you’re spending your time over the next week. This can be done on paper, in a spreadsheet, or in a productivity app.

For each block of time, record what you’ll be doing, whom you’ll be with, how valuable the activity is, and how you’ll feel afterwards. For the latter, use a scale from one to 10, where one is angry or drained and 10 is joyful or energised.

At the end of the week, pinpoint the activities that negatively affect your mood and take action to limit them. Use that recovered time to do things that boost your energy. And set aside time for restful, positive activities away from work, like taking a yoga class or spending time with friends.

Don’t be the source of your stress by recognising your limitations. Resist your perfectionist tendencies and your drive for constant high achievement. Recognise when you’re being too hard on yourself, and let go. Don’t try to be a hero. If you don’t have the ability or bandwidth to do something, be honest with yourself and ask for help.

Everyone faces stress at work, but some people are able to handle the onslaught of long hours, high pressure, and work crises in a way that wards off burnout. You can get better at handling stress by making several mental shifts.