Avoiding burn out at this time of year

In this busy, busy season are you making sure you take time for you, as well as your business, your job and everyone else you need to do things for? What are you doing to make sure you are avoiding burn out at this time of year?
We all have a lot on at this time of year, tick tock the clock is ticking, counting down to Year End and shut down to be with family, where did the last few weeks go?
Maybe you’ve already slowed down, you already have great balance, or you already have the kind of occupation where you can wind down through December. Many of the people I meet day to day however don’t. Their cumulative list of what they wanted to get done this year, plus planning for Christmas and countless events and catch ups we “need” to attend, are piling up.
My advice, while you’re being a super human, is don’t burn out or make your health vulnerable.

This time last year…

Last year, about this time, I was happily working away and getting excited about Christmas, trying to get everything done, attending lots of networking Christmas events and catching up with friends and BANG, I was hit by a virus, knocked out for 4 weeks. I missed commitments and events I’d arranged (my wonderful fellow colleagues and networkers stepped in to run some of them) and also missed out on key business which then impacted me for the following 3 months.
This happens to a lot of people. But I’m usually the one that doesn’t get unwell, maybe a day in bed and then up I get up and crack on, maybe once a year, if not every two years. Not this time. I hadn’t had anything like this since having pneumonia when I was 11.
I am convinced that I was more susceptible to this, and the effects of it, due to workloads and the pressure I was putting myself under in the two months prior.

The body has a way of telling you to stop.

And when, three weeks in, I felt better, no, no, “it” took my voice away completely for a week, as if to say “ah, ah, ah, not yet my love, let’s take your voice away so you can’t jump back on it and can get properly better” – Christmas Day was very quiet!
The thing is, I wasn’t doing work I didn’t want to do or that was particularly stressing me out compared to my corporate life. You can enjoy what you do but still do too much and put your system under too much stress. Then pile on alcohol, late nights, bad diet choices, and you’re a little ticking time bomb of sensitivity.

So, lessons learned…

Taking time for me, this year I’ve tried to have a one-hour break in the middle of the day (and I don’t mean lunch) to do something for me. Try to have have breaks, have time out, breathe, eat better, care less, give yourself less of a hard time, celebrate your successes.

Recognise everything

If you’re like me and move very quickly onto the next project after an achievement. Learn to stop and pat yourself on the back and just appreciate how fully incredible you are and everything you’re doing. Whether you think you should be doing it because of your incredibly high benchmarks and expectations of yourself, or because you have someone else expecting it of you, like a boss, partner, family member – depending on what it is you do in life.


We talk about 2020 goals, what’s your next aim, where will you be this time next year etc etc. But take time to think about where you are now. Even if it’s not where you thought you’d be, you are ahead of where you were this time last year. Recognise each thing you did, even if it wasn’t on your to do list. Every new thing you learned, every new thing you did that you hadn’t before, every time you stepped out of your comfort zone – which, let’s be honest, you’d forgotten about because it’s become your new normal and has just added to “the stuff you do”.

Celebrate YOU

You, and everything you do, are worth celebrating. You don’t have to win awards, get lots of exposure, have masses more money or better pictures on Instagram to know you’ve done well.
You have within you what you need to make yourself feel amazing, and that is most important and will impact every part of your life, from your mental wellbeing to your health and your results. You need to become your biggest cheer leader and start by cheering yourself for those scores and shots you took in the year. You’re on the right track, just take a minute to look at it and see how far you’ve come. Feel good about yourself as well as avoiding burn out at this time of year!

And breathe.


Kate Cherry

Regional Director, Athena Bedforshire & St Albans | www.theathenanetwork.com/katecherry | kate.cherry@theathenanetwork.com | Find out more about our meetings here

Arbonne Independent Consultant | www.katecherry.arbonne.com | kate.cherry.arbonne@gmail.com