#225 How to Avoid Burnout

Micro + Mid + Macro Recovery

Continuing our theme of sharpening our saw and resting before we get tired, let’s figure out how to avoid burnout.

Tal Ben-Shahar wrote a great book on how to quit being a perfectionist. He tells us that the root cause of fatigue, anxiety, depression and burnout in the corporate world “is not hard work; the problem is insufficient recovery.”

Think about that for a moment.

The problem isn’t that we WORK too hard per se. It’s that we don’t RECOVER enough.

That’s a really powerful distinction.

Which, of course, begs the question: Are YOU recovering enough?

Tal recommends we think about recovery on three levels: Micro + Mid + Macro.

Micro-level recoveries include things like taking a 15-minute break every 60 to 90 minutes.

Mid-level recoveries include things like making sure you have a shut-down complete that helps you get 7-9 hours of sleep every night and that you take at least a day off every week.

Macro-level breaks include taking 2-4 weeks off every year.

Let’s do a quick inventory. How are we doing?

Micro? Mid? Macro?

Personally, I’m pretty good at the Micro- and Mid-level breaks. And, I’m pretty terrible at the Macro-level. (Hah. Needs work!)

How about you?

Where are you rocking it? Celebrate that.

And, where can you Optimize just a little more? Get on that.

Remember: It’s not that we work too hard. It’s that we don’t recover enough!

Here’s to having fun going hard and an equal amount of fun recovering deeply.

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