Have you ever been burnt out? You know that feeling of being so very exhausted. With that exhaustion comes the overwhelm and feeling depleted, like everything is weighing on your shoulders.    Even though you love what you do, you can’t find the motivation, interest, or energy for your business or even things you enjoy.  

I have. I remember sitting with my coach and describing the feelings above but not recognizing it for what it was until she pointed it out.  

It would take months before I recovered, if I’m honest, likely a year. I networked less, rested more on the weekends, and turned down the volume on my social calendar. I took care of myself. I do a lot today to ensure I don’t let this happen again. I check in with myself regularly and notice when I need to make changes so I don’t burn out again.  

However, how do we still get stuff done even when burnt out? How do we keep the business going when all we want to do is curl up in front of the fire with a book and a cup of tea? (… maybe that’s just me)

Let me share some strategies to boost your productivity and help you recover.  

Create a workspace you love

One of the first things you can do to boost your productivity is to make your workspace something you enjoy. Start by decluttering your desk. When the desk is cluttered, our brains process too many things simultaneously. This is draining when you don’t have much energy to begin with. Take a few minutes to tidy your space, remove unnecessary items, and organize your material. 

You may need to do the same thing to your digital workspace. 

If you can, do something to make the space feel amazing. For me, that is adding sun or a pretty object. My current office is amazing, but it was dark and cluttered before our renovations. I would do my best to ensure my desk and area were tidy, but that wasn’t always enough. On the days I could, I would move my laptop down to the kitchen and work for a bit with the light streaming in. Sometimes, this was enough to boost my productivity for a few hours.  

Where and the space you work in can make a difference. What will you do to create a workspace you love?

Take breaks

As entrepreneurs, we work harder than everyone else. But being an entrepreneur also means you are your own boss. Give yourself permission to slow down when necessary.  

Start with taking regular breaks throughout the day. Breaks can help you recharge and prevent burnout from getting worse. Try taking short breaks every hour or so to stretch, walk around, or do some relaxing. You’ll come back to work feeling refreshed and more productive.

Also, sent boundaries about email and meetings. Maybe commit to no email after 7 pm or on weekends. 

If you can, take a vacation. If you can get away, do it. If you can’t, maybe take a staycation. But make sure you take a break. 

Breaks became a massive part of my recovery. Even today, when I time block, I build in breaks/buffer time. I also no longer book back-to-back meetings. I leave time between sessions for bio breaks or walk away from my computer.   I also book one week a quarter to slow down. I call them reading weeks. For one week, I don’t book coffee dates or network outside of my weekly group, and I prep for it like a vacation so I don’t have to do the regular weekly things (like write a blog). I spend that week, reading for my business and enjoyment, spending time with my husband, and going on at least one adventure. It’s a great way to recharge me. 

What will you incorporate into your schedule to ensure you take a break (or many)?

Put your mask on first

You have to take care of yourself.   When we feel burnt out, making good decisions to care for ourselves is hard. But your health is essential. Taking care of your body will help you feel better.  

Self-care doesn’t have to mean taking a bubble bath (but by all means, do, if this is important to you…please do) or a pricy spa visit. It means activities that maintain or promote optimal health. This includes:

Exercise:  Maybe a walk in the park or a hike in the woods would help you recharge and get moving. What do you enjoy? Riding your bike, swimming, going for a run, dancing? Moving has many benefits, including moving negative emotions through your body. 

Eat right:  Listen to your body. Pay attention to how it feels after eating certain foods. What I eat affects how I sleep and feel when I wake up. I can also see my energy levels change based on what I eat. Eat in a way that fills your body with energy and feels healthy.  

Sleep:  Did you know we need 7-9 hours of sleep? I know I wake up naturally after 7 hours when fully rested. I need more when I’m not rested (or healing a broken bone). However, most of us do not get enough sleep. We do a lot of healing and processing while we sleep; getting good sleep is important, especially when you feel burnt out.  

Mental health:  I like to teach the five batteries (alone time, social time, play, rest, and health) as a way to check in with yourself. What you need to do to charge your batteries and how much is unique to each person. What do you need to charge these batteries? My alone battery is a particularly sensitive one. I need it charged before the others can charge. So, I ensure that I spend time with myself enjoying things I love. How are your batteries doing, and what can you do to charge them?  

Have fun

Find ways to have fun when you are working. Making work enjoyable can boost your productivity. Maybe you can try gamifying your tasks, changing up your work environment, or putting on some music. By making work fun, you will be more motivated to get things done and less likely to feel burnt out.  

I love to play music while I work. I have a sit/stand desk, and when I’m in stand mode, I love putting on music I can dance to and then dance while working. Of course, some of my tasks require lyric-free music, but Spotify has music for almost anything!   

What will you try to have a little fun in your work environment? 

Set Realistic Goals

Be realistic about what you can accomplish during this period. If you set unrealistic goals, you will only feel more stressed and overwhelmed. This might not be the time to launch a new course or implement a new system. Set achievable goals, break them down into small, manageable tasks, and celebrate every step along the way.  

Practice self-compassion

Setting realistic goals naturally leads to being compassionate with yourself. Beating yourself up is not going to help. It will actually accomplish the opposite. Recognize that you are doing your best, and treat yourself with kindness and understanding. 

This was a hard one for me. As someone with great pride in my productivity, organization, and time management, I often quickly criticized myself.   I had to make a very intentional choice to set smaller goals and got very clear about what my business needed and what it didn’t so I could cut back. I also had to do a lot of work to feel comfortable with rest.  

How are you going to be compassionate with yourself?  

Seek Support

If you are feeling overwhelmed by burnout, don’t hesitate to seek support from friends, family, or a professional. 

I couldn’t have done it without my coach. If she hadn’t helped me see why I was struggling and helped me navigate the changes I needed to make, it would have taken much longer to get to the other side. 


Feeling burnt out is tough, but it doesn’t have to derail your productivity completely. Caring for yourself, creating a great workspace, and making work more enjoyable can boost your productivity and overcome burnout. Remember to be patient and kind to yourself, set reasonable goals, and prioritize self-care. With time and effort, you’ll be back to your productive self.  

Let’s grab a coffee if you want to share our experiences with burnout.  

“Many of us have been running all our lives. Practice stopping.”

Thich Nhat Hanh

“Burnout is due to a lack of respect for your personal boundaries.”

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