mobile-bannertablet-bannerdesktop-banner

5 ways to avoid burnout at work

Oct 08, 2012
Fortune default image
fortune.com

1. Get away and review

Dave McLurg runs a business in Phoenix that helps his customers find their ideal careers -- and employers. But sometimes he has to do the same thing for himself. How? He books a day at a local resort and figures out whether he's spending time on the right tasks -- or just wasting it. After a recent trip, he hired a scheduler to straighten out his frantic work life. "It's really about focusing on my ideal role," he says.

Fortune default image
fortune.com

2. Schedule small regular breaks

Many entrepreneurs feel guilty about taking any time for themselves, because their business already consumes most of their week. But if you don't, you'll begin to resent both your family and your company. Me? I find that the best way to keep my energy up is to plan something fun every Wednesday night -- even if it's simply watching a game with a buddy -- or have coffee with friends on Friday mornings.

Fortune default image
fortune.com

3. Hang out with the family

Dale Donat, CEO of Mid America Metals, travels frequently for his Springfield, Mo., building-restoration business, which projects $8.9 million in sales for 2012. He's found that taking a week off to babysit his granddaughter while her parents are on vacation renews his perspective more than any company offsite. "It's just a breath of fresh air from dealing with business situations all the time," he says.

Fortune default image
fortune.com

4. Lock down your vacation

It's easy to put off a much-needed break if you don't set the dates in stone, buy tickets, and make a deposit. Direct-marketing entrepreneur Paul E. Berman, who juggles five companies with $9 million in combined revenue, plans a couple of breaks a year backpacking in the woods. He says that after returning from hiking the Appalachian Trail earlier this year, he was "relaxed, focused, energized, ready to get back into attack mode."

Fortune default image
fortune.com

5. Do something outrageous

Eight CEOs I know are raving about the nonprofit group Earth Train's recent weeklong seminar, Mother Nature CEO, held on a nature preserve in the jungles of Panama. In between kayaking, hiking, and camping, they picked up tips about innovation and social networking from marketer and bestselling author David Meerman Scott on the $3,900-a-head adventure. Seminars like this one are a great way to get away, relax -- and come up with new ideas.

--Verne Harnish is the CEO of Gazelles Inc., an executive education firm.

All products and services featured are based solely on editorial selection. FORTUNE may receive compensation for some links to products and services on this website.

Quotes delayed at least 15 minutes. Market data provided by Interactive Data. ETF and Mutual Fund data provided by Morningstar, Inc. Dow Jones Terms & Conditions: http://www.djindexes.com/mdsidx/html/tandc/indexestandcs.html. S&P Index data is the property of Chicago Mercantile Exchange Inc. and its licensors. All rights reserved. Terms & Conditions. Powered and implemented by Interactive Data Managed Solutions