If you follow me on twitter you know this post took nothing short of three hopes and eight prayers to shift the writer’s block I’m experiencing. It’s not just writer’s block, it is also exhaustion. I’ve some how let time, scheduling, tasks, organizing and planning get the best of me. This ladies and gentlemen is what not to do. Yet, it is perfect inspiration for today’s lesson. #silverlining
Whether you are running your own business or managing your leadership role within the community, you will reap great rewards. However, it also comes with equal parts frustration. With so many things to handle, every priority ends up being a top priority. And because you are a ‘leader’ you dare not ask for help because you “got this”. Actually, you’ve got nothing but a nervous breakdown waiting to happen because you’re burning yourself out- like me.
So what do you do? How do you recover from leadership burnout?
1. Freakin’ ask for help
Many of us maintain full-time jobs while running our own businesses on the side. Those lucky enough to afford to run our own businesses full time- well God bless you! Either way, as perfectionists of our respective craft we often forget that we aren’t the only talented folks out here. It may be part ego. It may be part pride. But reaching out and asking for help will not make you less capable. It actually makes you smart. The abilities to delegate tasks and manage a team are two highly sought after skills every great leader needs. For a dose of my own medicine, see my quest for an intern.
This is not an acronym for anything, it really just means breathe. There are times I find myself moving like the speed of lightning. My thoughts get ahead of my actions and I literally find myself spinning. At some point, like today, I have to remind myself to simply breathe. Breathing is an auto activity of the body but every once in a while, we must do it consciously. Inhale. Exhale. Again. And again. Until we can relax and start again.
3. Get Over Yourself
Yes, really. We’re amazing. We’re awesome. We are many great things. However, in all the greatness we inhabit, we can be our worst enemies. As a generation stamped with more societal pressures than any other generation, being hard on ourselves is an understatement. We get caught up in the hype and forget how great we really are. But guess what? Get over yourself. When things get tough and energy gets low, we have to know when to hop up on our proverbial couches, jump up and down and scream our personal mottos, like YOLO or DOLO or whatever. Just encourage yourself.
4. Don’t Quit
I was blessed by the grace of God (and through power of the internets and Amanda) to watch a TED talk by Elizabeth Gilbert. In an effort to inspire us on a deeper level, Elizabeth tells us to think about our gifts as something that doesn’t come through us but rather something that is on loan to us from a higher power. She reminds us to keep showing up and do the job we’re sent here to do. In other words: Don’t quit. If that’s not a sermon, I don’t know what is! Well!!!!
The road to being a community leader, philanthropist, and/or non-profit leader isn’t easy. However, if we take a step back from time to time, I promise you the road will prove to be a lot less daunting. You owe it to yourself!
Here is the TED talk that touched me: (Have a crazy awesome week! OLE!)
We’re taking submissions for an intern through Friday April 13th. If you’ve been thinking about it or know someone that would be a star, get those resumes and writing samples to me! Please and thank you. Can’t wait to see them! Apply to be a Friends of Ebonie intern.