Sign up for my free 5-day email challenge designed to help you increase your income.
Helping small business owners, virtual assistants, and creative entrepreneurs grow their business.
If you are an online entrepreneur, there is a chance you may experience burnout in your business. To go even further, the marketing industry and its everchanging approach, especially for service providers, can make you feel like you have to be everywhere to gain more clients and keep revenue coming in, all while growing and scaling your business. Whether you notice burnout from the beginning stages or it hits you like a ton of bricks, it can be so easy to get stuck if that feeling of having to be everywhere online. So if you are dealing with burnout now, or have experienced it in the past, let’s look at ways to help you reduce its effects or prevent it for good.
Our guest on the podcast today is Ash Burnside. She is a burnout coach for overworking online entrepreneurs, helping them to find space for themselves between the demands of business and real life. After marketing for prominent online personalities and coaching colleagues along the way, she’s developed a process for helping digital business owners navigate a new path forward by showing them how to nurture self-trust and practice holistic wellness to heal from the hustle for good.
This journey for Ash was long and winding, but she initially started her first online business in marketing. She did things like social media management, copywriting, and funnel building. She loved those advanced marketing strategies for quite a while until 2020 hit, and burnout stopped her in her tracks. Marketing in and of itself was burnout-inducing as there are always new trends and platforms, and the number of strategies is never slowing down. It’s a lot of work.
So nine months into 2020, Ash was quarantine parenting her three boys, trying to maintain her home and business life while doing preschool and kindergarten, and it felt like one big joke for her. It was so much to handle on top of her own mental and physical struggles going on during this time, and things came crashing down. She had been avoiding helping herself for some time, and it got to a point where she had to take an emergency sabbatical to get help and slow way down.
After that, she took a full-time job for a year to recover and work at a more sustainable pace, allowing her to rediscover who she was. Through that journey of healing and recovery from burnout, she didn’t even realize it was happening at the time. Still, she began coaching everyone around her because she had these strategies that helped her to stay consistent, even during intense times as she went back into the marketing industry. She started teaching others how to recover from it and prevent it. She even got invited to be a burnout coach for someone else’s program to help other entrepreneurs avoid burnout. This opportunity opened her up to the coaching world and how prevalent burnout was, and she started her own coaching business.
It is the exhaustion from prolonged mental, physical, and emotional stress. You feel swamped constantly and can’t find your way out. This is something that Ash gets asked all the time, especially about the symptoms of burnout. Each person that experiences burnout has their own markers of what it feels like on the inside. It’s like the traditional view of an iceberg, where all you see if the little bit of a triangle above the water, but underneath the water or the surface, this absolute chaos and panic is happening. So it may seem like you’re unmotivated on the surface, but so many other things are happening underneath. That’s why Ash researched burnout even more, and although it is a state of being, it is also a symptom of something else.
This is the idea that there is a root cause and that you can get to the bottom of what is happening aside from burnout. Burnout is a symptom of being disconnected from yourself, not honoring those intuitive nudges telling you to do something different, not trusting yourself, and not having space for yourself. We need these things in our lives and businesses to make an impact and sustainably arrive at a healthy goal as your whole self – not just a physical marker of doing something, no matter the cost.
The number one tip that Ash recommends you start with is to start trying to tune into what your natural rhythms are. That’s usually the first thing you overlook, leading to burnout after ignoring your own signals – emotional, physical, or psychological. So start tapping back into those.
The usual answer that Ash comes across is that her clients have no idea because they have been ignoring them for so long. So to begin tuning back into those, you can take a 10-minute break three times a day to do nothing, no matter how chaotic your life may be. The reasoning for this time is that it does two things – it helps your body and mind. During those ten minutes, you can lightly stretch, and it will help your body. For your mind, it is all about doing nothing and trying not to think about much at all, so no journaling, meditations, or listening to podcasts. The idea with this is that you are allowing yourself to rest and creating a small piece of space for yourself. It will help you to tune back into what you need at the moment.
If the thought of doing nothing for your mind isn’t possible right now because of your anxiety, then you need to know it is a very common thing. To start, you want to do simple things or simple tasks that put up guardrails not to let your mind wander to tough things. You want to focus on this one nourishing task that allows you to take a break and not overthink.
The first exercise you could do is create a gratitude list. Give yourself ten minutes to come up with a list; whether you have 30 or five items, you develop mental boundaries by doing this straightforward task.
The other list that Ash recommends is a control list. It can be done in two ways. First, you can draw a line down the middle of a sheet of paper or a big circle in the middle of your paper. So on one side of the line or the outside of the circle, you will write down the things you don’t have control over. For example, if you can’t think of anything currently, remember back to yesterday or the past week. Then, on the other side of the line or inside the big circle, you will write down the things you can control. This one is even more helpful for those with anxiety because it helps you do this simple thing instead of focusing on something you are overthinking or worrying about.
These lists do two things for you – it pulls your awareness to all the things you can’t control and will help you realize how much power you have and what really matters. These things help show you where to put your energy and put you back into the driver’s seat of your life in these very simple tasks.
Preventing burnout is crucial to your success in realizing that you need to do something different when those signs pop up. Ash already mentioned the first thing of finding your natural rhythms and honoring them. This can look different for everyone. However, this doesn’t mean that you sleep a certain way; it means that you allow yourself to feel into what feels good for you and brings you joy. You don’t have to change your whole business or life right away. One little shift that you can make to honor your rhythm is enough.
The other thing that is important in preventing burnout is strengthening your self-trust. This is huge because one of the reasons why burnout comes in the first place is because you don’t trust yourself to make the right decisions. As a result, you give your power away in many weird places. It can show up in harmless ways like hiring a coach, which is a great thing in and of itself, but if you’re constantly seeking external sources of either validation or someone to make your choices for you, that can start eroding your self-trust.
Start strengthening that relationship with yourself again so that you know what you are trying to say to yourself; what is that internal compass? That internal compass will never lead you back into burnout. That inner compass is that sense of intuition and healthy emotional rootedness in yourself. When you have that, no one can topple you back over. Nothing can suck you back into burnout because you are so firmly rooted into that, but that takes time, and part of that, again, is not only in the natural rhythms, but again, listening to yourself and getting that gut reaction.
When it comes to recovering from burnout, self-care plays a huge factor. Most people think of this as an influencer style of self-care, but especially for introverts, you have your gut check or intuitive hit of telling yourself what you need. So it’s essential to follow those.
Another thing that people tend to think of self-care as basic care needs like brushing your teeth, taking time to do your hair, and eating nourishing foods. It’s believed that these are self-care tasks, but they are things you need as a human being to keep yourself alive and happy.
Self-care is what you do to make life worth living and make life joyful for you. It’s up to you to find those things. That being said, there are forms of self-care for your emotions, body, spirit, and all the different buckets of your life. For your body, self-care could be finding a way to move your body. Emotional self-care could be taking time for yourself – like those ten minutes of quietness. Psychological or spiritual self-care can be anything you need – things that light you up. This could be creativity and allowing yourself to pursue passions that light you up. These can be potent forms of self-care.
If you want Ash’s free guide, Burnout Protocols, for incorporating more self-care into your daily life to help prevent burnout, then be sure to grab it now.
Ash has given some super beneficial tips and insights on dealing with and avoiding burnout in your business, especially for introverted entrepreneurs who tend to be people pleasers, don’t listen to their intuition and don’t have clear boundaries set for themselves and their energy. So don’t forget to use the resources mentioned below to connect with Ash and get more tips on dealing with burnout as an online entrepreneur.
[1:17] The journey Ash took to becoming a burnout coach for online entrepreneurs
[7:22] Burnout and getting to the root cause of what is really going on
[10:43] Your next steps in recovering from burnout as an online entrepreneur
[13:09] Exercises for people with anxiety to help find their natural rhythms again
[17:26] Preventing burnout from coming back or happening again
[24:32] How self-care plays a role in your recovery from burnout
If you enjoyed this episode, I invite you to drop a five-star rating + review with your biggest takeaway, so that other introverts can find this podcast for guidance and support through their introvert entrepreneur journey!
The training vault contains on-demand access to several trainings and presentations around growing your business and creating additional revenue streams.
Want to learn the 4 marketing methods that work best for most introverts + how to use them effectively to grow your business? This free webinar covers it all.