Feel like you’re burning out in sales or in your entrepreneurial venture? If so, this article has your name written all over it.
It’s not your typical advice that so many self-help gurus offer. In fact, I’ll go out and say it: Burnout is often a figment of your imagination. It simply doesn’t exist in many cases. Sure, sometimes you can work yourself into the ground, but I promise a lot of what you’re feeling is just resistance to success.
You want to succeed. You’re about to succeed. Now the only thing standing in your way is YOU… or maybe someone else.
Not too long ago someone came to me and told me I seemed to be burning out. “You’re traveling all the time, your kids are in all kinds of sports, you’re putting out so many videos” and on he went. He was coming from a place of concern, but he just didn’t know me well enough to envision my potential. He didn’t have my fire. So he pumped his brakes on my growth!
I had to stop and tell myself, “Wait a minute… I’m not burnt out. I know what burnout is, and I’m far from it. I’m all about efficiency, velocity, and forward momentum. It’s who I am. I wanted to say, “If you think I’m productive now, wait till you see my 10x my output!”
Which brings me to my first point…
#1 – Stand guard at the door of your mind
You can’t let other people project their feelings onto you. Whether it’s friends, colleagues, even your own family — you have to stand guard at the door of your mind. People will unload their limiting beliefs onto you all day if you let them.
If you’re not careful, they can set you back years of forward progress and growth in one conversation. That’s the destructive power of small thinking. So you can’t let someone else put a single seed of doubt in your mind.
If you want to be great and avoid burnout, just remember what you’re made of. We can look at modern-day legends to see how it’s done. Lebron James. Cristiano Ronaldo. These guys are the best in the world because they stand guard at the doors of their minds. They don’t move with the masses. They work hard, and they prioritize keeping their mindset in top shape.
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#2 – Stop feeling guilty
You will make mistakes. That’s a guarantee. You will probably fail to qualify your prospect and realize 45 minutes into your sales meeting that they can’t buy. You will fumble deals that would otherwise close smoothly. You will say the WRONG thing to an employee, colleague, or manager that will come back to bite you. But you can’t go on feeling guilty about these past failures. You have to learn and let go.
Around here, we always fail forward. We learn from our mistakes. And that’s what you have to do to avoid burning out. You have to reframe your mind and remember that each setback is a lesson. It’s data. Take this data and apply it moving forward. Do this and you’ll be lightyears ahead of your closest competition in no time at all.
#3 – Workout or exercise regularly
They say the heaviest weight at the gym is the front door. So sign up today and go work out tonight. You simply have to stop making excuses. The benefits of living an active lifestyle and hitting the gym are far-reaching. It’s therapeutic. You’ll look better, feel better, perform better. It clears the cobwebs in your mind, and exercising a proven stress-reliever. So get it done!
When I do see people on the verge of burnout, it’s often because they aren’t taking care of their bodies and minds. They eat unhealthy food, drink too much, and binge-watch Netflix during their free time. Not only is this the wrong approach to success… if you live like this, I can almost guarantee you’re on the fast-track to burnout! Thankfully it’s not too late. Clean up your lifestyle, get to the gym, and sure enough you’ll start winning again.
#4 – Pray and meditate always
Don’t ever get too busy in life that you forget to give thanks to God. You’re here on Earth for a reason, so pray to God and thank Him for another day. Meditate on the blessings in your life. Humble yourself to your creator and you’ll find an inner strength to overcome obstacles that would normally flatline you.
Fostering a spiritual life and getting right with God is one of the best ways to avoid burnout. As a bonus, this will also inject plenty of hope and wellbeing into your life. You will have something bigger to live for. And your outlook on life will go from bleak and “just getting by” to eternal and thriving. This will also put success and growth in proper perspective. And you’ll have a healthier relationship with your work moving forward.
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#5 – Pivot when needed
If you go out fishing in the morning, and 30 minutes goes by without any fish biting, do you pack it up and go home? Not a chance! You try different bait, find a different fishing hole, or experiment in some other way. Same goes for sales and entrepreneurship. You don’t throw in the towel when the deals aren’t flooding in. You pivot and try something new.
Oftentimes this means taking a step back to re-strategize, re-prioritize, and find a way around (or through!) the obstacle. But again, this doesn’t mean you’re burning out. You just need to adjust. Find the problem and pivot for success.
So you tell me that you can’t get people to buy your product? Well who are you selling to? Managers and Directors? There’s your problem right there. Go up the ladder and sell to the C-suite (CEO, CMO, CTO, etc.). You see, there’s always a choke-point where your deals or success is dying. Find out what it is and tweak it. Experiment. Whatever you do, keep making forward progress and welcome the change.
#6 – Be grateful and give thanks
There’s no better way to beat burnout than by having an attitude of gratitude and by giving back. I recommend volunteering at a soup kitchen downtown, visiting the cancer ward and reading books to sick children, give gifts to underprivileged youth, or serve at a homeless mission. Doing so will give you much-needed perspective, and it will help you to be grateful for what you have and where you’re going.
You see, as thrilling as sales can be, it’s also a career that can put you in a funk if you’re not careful. You might feel burnt out from trying (but failing) to land new deals. Or you might feel burnt out from pushing too hard with deals getting inked left and right. Either way, you need to take a step back, get some perspective, take care of your mind and body, pivot when needed, guard against naysayers, and regularly reflect on the blessings you have to be grateful for.
First and foremost, stop allowing yourself to feel like you’re burning out! You’re probably not burning out. You’re probably just on the verge of a serious breakthrough, and you’re starting to feel the resistance. It’s only natural. In other cases, burnout is a real thing. If you feel you’re working yourself into exhaustion day after day and spinning your wheels, then this list will help you break free from that vicious cycle.
Take this list of tips and tricks and bookmark it. Better yet, print it out and hang it on your wall. Remember that you have what it takes to succeed in sales and life. Take a little extra time each day to be intentional about your approach to your work, and you may be surprised by the sustainable success that starts coming your way.
Until next time…