Updated: Aug 25, 2021
"I feel completely overwhelmed!"
That's probably the ONE statement that I hear most at the beginning of my coaching calls.
And it's an experience I've lived with since I started truly identifying myself as an entrepreneur over 17 years ago.
You see, as long as you see yourself as a service provider, YES, you do get tired and are happy to head home after a long day at the barn. Yes, I get that!
BUT, it's only when you make the switch to being an equine entrepreneur, that your mind goes into overdrive.
Am I right?
Marketing, technology, planning, strategizing, inventing, creating, execution...
There is so much new to learn, so much more to master, an endless checklist to complete!
That's when you start to take your ideas and your thoughts into the barn, onto the horse and, yes, guilty as charged, into bed.
And sometimes, you wonder if just maybe you could go back to 'just' being a trainer, saddle fitter, equine facilitator, but you CAN'T!
You let the genie out of the bottle and there isn't a way to stuff her back into it!
So, what's there to do? How can you manage overwhelm over the long haul???
Here are 3 tips that I've implemented over the years to help me prevent burnout:
1. Stay extremely attached to planning and execution, but NOT to the outcome. If you keep being trustworthy to yourself and your action, IT WILL all work out...over the long run! Don't get hung up over the daily small set-backs. They are part of the deal!
2. Add play-breaks into your calendar. Make them as important as your biggest, most urgent project.
What are 'play-breaks'?
For me, they are things my soul craves. Jumping on my mini-trampolin, going for walks with my dog, reading a great novel (even just for 10 minutes), taking a bath, taking naps, gardening, baking, watching a good movie with my husband...and of course, daily time with my horses!
Especially at the beginning of your equine entrepreneurial path, you might not want to take those breaks. Your desire to succeed is fueled by passion, curiosity, a new way of looking at yourself.
Those emotions are a powerful drug that will make you stay up until 3am, several nights in a row!
For a while! And then...you crash! You come off your high into a deep low!
Steady progress, with lots of restorative breaks ARE THE solution!
(Stay under threshold and wait for the chew and link! "Wait, what?" Yup, this applies to you too ;-))
3. Keep those activities (the deep focused ones and the play breaks) as separate as you can. When you're working, don't check Facebook or your phone. Just work, focused and concentrated. When you're done, go play. Go deep into play!
Try not to think of your work while you're pretending to play!
I know, it's hard!
"Why not go for a walk, while thinking about work"?, you might ask.
You CAN, but then mark that walk as a work session and take a break from THAT after.
Make it black and white -> Deep focus...complete play time!
Heck...don't you do that with your horses???
Give it a try!