Mental Health

How to do it all and avoid burnout

woman laying flat on a bed with her hair covering half her face

I recently posted on my Instagram how I’m able to “do it all” or be a “super mom” as some like to call it.

Follow these 8 tips to help you do it all and avoid burnout. These are great ways to recover from burnout as well and help you get your to do list done. #burnoutrecovery #howtoavoidburnout #healthymindset #mindset #positivemindset #todolist

But I felt like that post deserved more explanation on how I actually do it all while avoiding burnout.

There are two things that need to be covered here first.

What is burnout?

I found this pretty interesting, but the term ‘burnout’ was first coined in 1974 by an “American psychologist, Herbert Freudenberger. He used it to describe the consequences of severe stress and high ideals in “helping” professions”.

In the year 2021, burnout can happen to literally anyone, in any profession, at any point in their life.

I think of it as taking on too much and putting very high standards and ideals on yourself that can be difficult to live up to. These self-imposed standards can cause us to want to be perfect at everything we do.

When we take on too much, it can lead to high levels of stress and anxiety and pure physical exhaustion.

Burnout can also lead to physical problems like insomnia, headaches, stomachaches, depression and more.

So as a high performer, type-A, how do you ‘do it all’ while avoiding many of these situations?

First, we need to take a look at what ‘doing it all’ means.

What does it mean to ‘do it all’?

To many, the term “doing it all” means that you’re able to accomplish everything on your to-do list, you have a thriving marriage, a full-time career, well-behaved kids that you care for, exercise on a regular basis and you feed the dog from time to time.

Basically that you’re never dropping the ball and you have your sh*t together.

But here’s the thing, if you want to “do it all” without burning out and still love your life, there has to be some give and take.

Here are eight ways I’ve learned to actually do it all without burning out.

1. Be okay with your schedule changing

This has been a huge one that I’ve been focusing on a lot more since having a child. When you become okay with your schedule changing, you’re more relaxed and not feeling quite so wound up about your to-do list.

Know that the list will get done. Maybe not on the exact timeline you had anticipated, but rolling with the punches allows you to take the stress away.

Being able to look at how these schedule changes can actually benefit you is also a way to make it feel like you can still do it all. It’s just in a new order.

2. Stop people pleasing

Oof. This one’s a doozy, and why I had to put it at number two. The reason we feel so overwhelmed all of the time is because we’re trying to take on too much. We have glorified the hustle and grind and having a never ending to-do list.

A lot of that has to do with feeling like we need to do everything we’re asked by others. We don’t want to look like we’re incapable of the task at hand. Or that the other person is going to be disappointed if we don’t do what they ask.

But when we take on way too much it doesn’t allow us the opportunity to get to what we really want to accomplish. Doing it all without burning out is so dependent on making sure you’re taking on tasks that you’re good at and (most of the time) actually want to do.

This is the perfect opportunity to set boundaries and stick to them. If going out to dinner with that friend or family member every single week is weighing on you, set a boundary to say, “You know what? I love and appreciate our time together, but I really need to focus on x, y or z right now. Can we switch to every other week or once a month for our get togethers?”

Know that their response is not a direct reflection on you. You’re setting the boundary for what you really need right now. You’re not cutting them out of your life, but instead offering an alternative to your meetings.

3. Be honest and ask for what you need

This one is especially huge as women. We tend to struggle to voice what it is we need because we feel that if we’re not the ones doing it all that we’re not doing it “right”. But there is no right way to doing it all.

Before we had Kennedy, I voiced to Burken what was really important to me to continue once Kennedy was here. This really set a basis within our relationship and parenting that allowed me to continue to work on or participate in things that were really important to me.

For example, I told him I wanted to still make time for exercise, blogging and building my business. When Kennedy came and I said I needed to do any one of these things, he was there to help out because we had already discussed these things.

Even if you haven’t had these pre-conversations, make sure you’re utilizing your support system. Be firm with what you want to accomplish and where you’re going to need help.

4. Know it’s okay to take time for yourself

You may have heard the phrase “you can’t fill from an empty cup” by now, but it’s still very accurate.

Burning the candle at both ends will inevitably lead to burn out, and that’s what we’re working on avoiding here.

By utilizing your support system (point 3) and taking some time for yourself, it will allow you to replenish your own cup so that you can keep going.

Find something that brings you immense joy and schedule it each week. Whether that’s going to an exercise class, taking a bath, meditating, reading, sunbathing, going for a walk, whatever it is, make sure you’re doing it weekly (if not daily).

This will replenish your mind and allow you to be the top notch you who can do it all.

5. Create a to-manifest list vs a to-do list

I heard this on a podcast from Manifestation Babe recently and it really stuck with me.

A to-do list makes us feel like we’re the sole ones responsible to complete the tasks that are on it.

When you switch your thought process from a to-do list to a to-manifest list, it actually takes the pressure off you. You’re saying to the Universe, here are all the things I’d like to accomplish. Please bring the right people into my life as needed to help me get each one of these done.

When our minds are framed up this way, people will be brought into our lives to help us tick items off the list.

You might have items on your to-manifest list like:

  • Mow the lawn
  • Empty the dishwasher
  • Go for a jog
  • Grocery shop

The Universe may show up here with a neighbor kid offering to mow your lawn for the rest of the summer. Or a friend might call you up and say, “hey, want to go for a run today?” Or maybe the perfect timeslot opens up for grocery delivery and you don’t actually have to leave your house.

Again, framing your to-do list this way really allows you to take some of the pressure off yourself and feel like you’re still doing it all without burning yourself out.

6. Stop comparing your life to the highlight reel

Ahh the highlight reel.

What you see on the outside of what you think everyone’s life looks like. They may seem like they totally have their sh*t together. Or that they have the perfect family or the perfect life.

But that person’s photos or videos are just a snapshot in time. It’s not always the real deal, nor does it give you the full picture of their life.

Take my Instagram profile for example. What you see from the outside are cute photos of me and Kennedy. Or photos of me eating some of my favorite foods. What you don’t see are moments Kennedy is having a tantrum. Or the first trimester with baby 2 where I was feeling super anxious. Or the workout that I struggled through.

Even watching other people’s IG or FB stories are still just a snapshot in time. Unless that person has a camera crew on them 24/7 and can document every single part of their life, you’re still just getting snippets (and usually the best snippets).

Taking the time and energy out of your day to think that someone else is able to do it all or has it better/easier than you is wasted energy. Playing the comparison game steals the joy away from the beautiful life you do lead. So focus your energy there and you’ll feel 1,000x better.

7. Take a look at your feelings towards food and your body

This one may seem a bit out there, but hang with me here.

When I began shifting those feelings of:
🤷 confusion about what was healthy/not healthy
🍩 I probably shouldn’t eat this
🍟 why am I eating right now
🙈 always being disappointed by my reflection

To feelings of:
🍑 confidence in my food choices regardless of labels
🍩 eating what I want without guilt
🥙 I’m fueling my body with the foods it needs to succeed
💃 confidence with who I am inside and out

I started to feel like I really could do it all. Because I was so much less focused on how many calories I was consuming. I was no longer taking up precious brain space by feeling guilty for what I was eating. I no longer felt overwhelmed by how I looked in the mirror.

Shifting my mindset to focusing on grocery shopping for foods I actually enjoyed or making meals that were fun and tasted good actually gave me more free time to do other things on my to-manifest list. It also cut down on the time it took to create a grocery list, shop and prepare all of those foods. Freeing me up to tackle other tasks at hand.

No longer feeling like my body was the enemy made me feel like a happier person, and that happiness spread to others. It allowed me to be more honest with myself about my needs and voice those to others as well.

8. Utilize outside help to become your support system to avoid burnout

I put this one last because not only is it typically hard for us to voice our need for help to our inside support system, but it can become even harder to ask for outside help.

If you truly want to avoid burnout, you have to be willing to ask for help from multiple different people.

That’s going to look different for so many, but some ways might be:

  • Hiring someone to mow your lawn or do snow removal
  • Ordering groceries online for delivery
  • Utilizing a prepared meal service
  • Hiring someone to clean your house on a bi-weekly basis
  • Hiring a coach or mentor for your health/mental well-being

That last one is so key when it comes to feeling less overwhelmed by everything that’s going on. They’re able to provide outside perspective that those closest to you are unable to.

When Burken and I first started going through the IVF process I started seeing an acupuncturist. Not only was she an incredible acupuncturist, but she was also a fantastic “therapist” of sorts. She offered me outside perspective that anyone close to me was unable to offer. And that’s just what I needed.

Like I mentioned in #4, learning to take time for yourself can also come in the form of talking to someone who is able to help you see new perspectives. To help you come to new conclusions and expand your mind.

It’s actually part of the reason I created the Finding Freedom Mastermind. To offer you outside support and guidance related to helping you reframe your feelings towards food and your body.

We work together to focus on creating healthy habits that fit your personal lifestyle and personality. We start by shifting your feelings around food and how you see yourself in the mirror.

With my support you’ll go from thinking about food 24/7, struggling with emotional eating and being unhappy with the way you look. As a result, you’ll be able to easily choose the right foods for you and your family, break the emotional eating cycle and finally have true self-love and self-acceptance. So that you can look in the mirror and say to yourself “I’m beautiful, I look hot, I am worthy of the love I give myself.”

Because when all of those pieces come together, you’re able to avoid the burnout and be able to do it all.

Check out the Finding Freedom Mastermind here and begin to receive the incredible support you deserve to become the super mom you are!

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