Being a Type A personality is not a bad thing, if you learn to control life’s stresses. We are all under stress–some more than others–but the key is to regularly reduce it and gain a balanced perspective on life. Achievement in one area of your life is not worth killing yourself for, even if you die wealthy.
To avoid or overcome burn-out, heed the advice in the 12 tips that follow. But change yourself slowly. You cannot adopt 6 or eight new behaviors overnight. Take them one at a time, and before you know it you will be a new person.
1.Limit the number of hours you work. Most workaholics put in 60-80 hours every week. Cut back your work load so you are working a normal 40-50 hour week.
2.Set goals and write them down. Take stock of your activities and determine which offers the highest pay-off. Set goals for these and get rid of as much “busy work” as you can.
3.Learn to say “No!” Refusing to take on more work or responsibilities will not lower your worth in the eyes of others. Fend for yourself.
4. Delegate. Accept the fact that you cannot do everything yourself and that other people can do good work, especially if they are supervised well. In the long run you are better off spending your time training people than trying to do everything yourself.
5. Exercise regularly. This is the best advice we can give you and the one you should act on immediately. It is the best way to reduce stress. Exercise makes you stronger in every way. Research has shown that people between the ages of 55 and 88 who exercise regularly are mentally sharper.
6. Break up your routine. If your routine is very rigid, change it around to give yourself some variety. The same principle applies to what you eat. Avoid food ruts, especially fast food ruts.
7. Take time to relax. Don’t eat lunch at your desk. Use that time to relax, take a walk or just sit and meditate.
8.Get out of town. A change of scenery works wonders, even for a weekend or a day. Plan trips both short and long. They get you away from it all and give you peace.
9.Spend more time with family and friends. Workaholics often downplay the importance of people in their lives. People are very important. Keep connections fun and healthy.
10.Have fun. Pursue your hobbies. Take time to disengage your mind and read, even if you read comic books. Go to sporting events, the theater or whatever you find entertaining.
11. Lighten up. This is the most difficult advice to heed, but it may be the most important. Keep things in perspective, the right perspective being that nothing is worth getting sick about. To help you shift your thinking, spend 10 minutes in a hospital or nursing home. Suddenly you will see the world differently and will not take life too seriously.
12. Repeat. Go back and repeat the previous 11 steps, year after year, month after month.