How To Avoid Burnout


Oct 14

I’m often asked by other entrepreneurs what the secret is in avoiding burnout. I think it’s a fair question that every entrepreneur should ask because burnout leads to failure and the risk of losing everything you’ve worked for, both professionally and personally.

When burnout occurs the quality of your work will suffer and you will recognize a negative impact on your physical and mental health, which will naturally affect your personal life, your family, and your friends.


I think the key to avoiding burnout centers around recognizing the signs. It’s far too common for people to ignore the indicators because they have no idea which warning signals to look for. By the time they figure it out, burnout has already set in.

  • Working Too Many Hours: If you are consistently working more than 50 hours a week, this is a huge red flag. Yes, there are times as a business owner, especially when first starting out, that it is necessary to work 50, 60, even 70 hours per week. However, if this becomes your standard practice then you are on a collision course with burnout.

I would also add that if your business requires more than 50 hours per week on a perpetual basis, you need to take a hard look at your operational structure because it’s likely that you have serious flaws in your process, but this is a topic for another day.

  • Not Sleeping: If you aren’t sleeping enough, you are on a collision course with burnout. Not only will a shortage of sleep have a negative impact on your physical health, but it will lead to a lack of focus and attention to detail. The quality of your work could suffer and result in mistakes and sloppy output.

You could also miss things you can’t afford to miss, be short in your interactions with others, fall behind schedule, and disappoint your customers.

  • Constantly Stressed: Most business owners who burn out are habitually stressed. This particular warning sign will be most visible to your family and close friends, and it will most likely have negative consequences (arguments, strained relationships, etc.).

If your spouse, kids, or close friends confront you about the level of stress in your life, take head because this is serious business. Not only will it have a negative impact on those closest to you, but it is also a significant risk to your physical and mental health. DO NOT ignore this warning sign.

  • Lack Of Joy: Too many business owners walk through their day-to-day life with little or no joy. Of all the indicators this might be the hardest to recognize, yet the one that is the most disheartening of all.

Most entrepreneurs start businesses so they can pursue their passion and live life on their own clock. This should be both liberating and exhilarating for every one of us.

BUT if it becomes difficult to get out of bed and go off to work each morning, if you are regularly missing important family events, or consistently disappointing the people who care about you, the joy will vanish from your life and depression can set in quickly.

There are other indicators on the road to burnout, but those identified above are by far the most common.


Understanding the indicators is critical, but that in and of itself is not enough. In order to avoid burnout, it is vital that you take action when the warning signs pop up.

  • If you are consistently working too many hours, STOP.

You might say it’s more complicated than that (I’ve said that myself), but for the most part it isn’t. I understand that there will always be things that need to get done, but you have to find a way to manage your workload so that you aren’t consistently working 50-60 hours per week.

Delegate some of your responsibilities to an employee who has the skill set and capacity to handle more. If you don’t have an employee to delegate to, or if you don’t have enough employees to handle current volume, then you need to take on less projects or find a more efficient way of operating.

  • If you aren’t sleeping enough, make the decision to change that practice. Implement some clear boundaries in your personal life so that you can get to bed at a decent time most nights and get the necessary sleep your body requires.

If it’s normal for you to catch up on work while you are at home in the evening, make the decision to shut it down by 9:00 PM, or even 8:00 PM. Allow your body and mind to relax and give yourself a little time to wind down before bedtime.

  • If you are stressed out constantly, you have to take a good hard look at those factors that are causing you the most stress AND be willing to do something about them. If you are constantly behind, or if certain customers or projects play a large role in your stress level then you have to be willing to let them go.

While eliminating stressors from your life may seem challenging, I can promise you that if you don’t you could face far greater consequences.

  • Finally, if you lack joy you need to recognize that life is way too short to spend it being miserable. One of the tradeoffs of owning a business is having control of your time and managing work/life balance.

Make it a priority to get home in time for dinner with your family. Cancel a meeting if that’s what it takes in order to get to your kid’s game or concert. Take a long weekend to do some of the things you enjoy. Schedule a family vacation and recognize that the work will still be here when you return.

Trust me when I say that avoiding burnout is within your control so recognize the warning signs and take action when you see them.

I trust you will find this info helpful in avoiding burnout. If you have questions or simply want to dig deeper, I’d love to speak with you. You can reach me at

Leave a Comment:

Leave a Comment:

Back To Blogs

Schedule A Call

Schedule a one-on-one call with Kent to create a financial plan with lasting impact.


Ever wonder how you can turn your business idea into a reality?