It’s crucial for anyone, but especially for a business leader like a COO, to make sure you don’t get to a place in your role where you’re suffering from burnout.
The fact is, as a COO, you are in such a high-stress environment, working with such a high-growth company with lots and lots of demands for your time. This can come from people, projects, or even just the stress of growth and average day to day operations. Because of the high demand of your job, it is essential to take care of your health.
Your company needs you. You want to avoid burnout as much as you can. Here are some tips to do just that.
Start Your Mornings Slow
Don’t rush every morning. It can be tempting to sleep in and rush out the door at the last minute, but if you do this every day, the stress that puts on your body will begin to turn into burnout.
Obviously, sometimes you sleep in or miss an alarm and have to rush, but all COOs should try not to do this more often than not. Go to bed earlier if you have to and get up early. Take your morning slow. Make breakfast and a coffee and sit down as you eat it. A stressed, rush morning sets the tone for your day and stress is one of the main causes of burnout.
Get Enough Exercise
Work can involve a lot of sitting around as a COO. This can not only take a toll on your body but on your mind and energy, too. Sitting all day long can make you feel tired, uninspired, and unmotivated. Exercise can do the opposite.
Making sure you are active outside of work will improve your work ethic and motivation. Feeling like you’re sitting around all day can make you feel tired and slow. When it feels like there is no end to the sitting and work, burnout can begin to peek its head out. Exercise breaks you away from that.
Eat nutritiously, and not just once in a while or for one meal. Eat nutritiously throughout the entire day. This means making sure you have a healthy breakfast before work, pausing in your day to have a proper lunch rather than just snacks, and coming home in time to have a nice dinner.
Everyone’s busy, especially COOs, but make time for real food. Picking up something quick like fast food is fine once in a while, but if you’re always doing it, it’s going to start taking its toll. You don’t want unhealthy eating habits affecting your energy levels and ability to get stuff done as quickly as you need to. Eat well if you want to avoid burnout.
Take De-Stress Breaks
A de-stress break could include taking a moment to just relax and breathe, grab a snack, or take a walk in the fresh air.
COOs should only schedule about 70 percent of their calendar and leave 30 percent of their calendar as available buffer time for breaks, walks, exercise, snacks, etc. After that, it’s just about making sure that you do not overwork yourself throughout the week.
None of these tips sound like they have anything to do with running a business and being a COO, but it is essential to both. Businesses rely on their leaders, so their leaders need to know how to take care of themselves and set a good example for others to do the same. No one should have to suffer from burnout, least of all you.
If you can remember one thing, and only one thing from this blog, it’s that you’re never going to get everything done. Do not try to catch up during weekends and evenings. That is your time to spend away from work. It’s essential to avoid burnout.
What do you do to avoid burnout in your life? Let us know in the comments below!
If you have questions or would like more information, I’d be happy to help. Please send us an email, and someone from my team will get in touch with you!
Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in January 2018 and has been edited for accuracy and comprehensiveness.