Are You Close to Experiencing Burnout in Your Wedding Planning Business?
- September 5, 2013
- Posted by: Deborah Moody
- Category: Business Tips Uncategorized Wedding Planner Advice
Have you been experiencing burnout in your Wedding Planning business? Has your once fun and exciting career left you feeling drained? Simply put, small business burnout is long-term physical, emotional or mental exhaustion that causes a diminished interest in work. It can happen both to financially struggling business owners as well as those who are successful. But how does a person who was once intensely passionate about being a professional wedding planner reach this point… especially if their business seems to be doing well?
The main reason for burnout is due to excessive and prolonged stress. This can be caused by:
- Your type of personality – being too much of a perfectionist, too controlling or too driven.
- Your lifestyle – poor eating habits, working too many hours without enough family and play time, no support, a lack of adequate sleep, doing it all yourself, or an overloaded schedule.
- Work-related issues – highly demanding expectations from clients, not enough recognition for your hard work, working on a high pressure contract.
- Frustration – when things do not happen at the time you want or the way you want, getting frustrated can add to your burnout level.
But how do we prevent ourselves from getting to this point? There is much we can do to alleviate stress so that it doesn’t overwhelm us and lead to burnout. Consider the 5 following suggestions:
- Keep yourself physically healthy. By eating foods that are good for you and adding regular, moderate exercise (some recommend light aerobics 3 times a week for at least 20 minutes*) to your schedule, you can improve your health. This in turn promotes a sense of well-being (most likely partly due to endorphins being released into your system from aerobics). Add a regular schedule of adequate sleep to this, and you can improve your ability to manage stress.
- Keep yourself organized. List the daily tasks. Determine your priorities, make a schedule, and stick to it. By doing so, you will find it easier to cope with stress. Do the tasks you dislike first. Try doing 3 – 5 things from your list before you read your emails.
- Make time for family and recreation/creativity. Your family will most likely be your best support group when you are facing stress. They know you for who you are and love you unconditionally. Be sure to reciprocate by giving them your time. Participating in recreation and nourishing your creativity away from work-related activities now and then refreshes the soul, and helps you return to your work with a positive attitude.
- Be balanced and reasonable. Burnout can be caused by constantly pushing yourself to the limit both physically and emotionally, or by expecting perfection. To prevent overextending yourself, learn to say “no” to that which exceeds what you can reasonably handle. This includes not infringing on your personal and family time. When you are with your family be present, not on the phone talking to a client.
- Get support, and learn to delegate. As a small business owner you have many ‘hats to wear’. Having a social network with those connected to you in the wedding industry and small business world will allow you to throw around ideas and receive input. As you get to know them, you may find some whose expertise could help your business develop smoothly, and perhaps hire them as contractors to help ease your workload.
- Avoid getting frustrated. Continue to provide quality service, and exercise patience in overcoming challenges
- Time Management. Set realistic expectations and boundaries for your bride and yourself. Remember, the bride has hired you. She does not own you for the next 12 months. Consider increasing your prices and decreasing your events. At a certain point it will balance out. Determine your objective. Is it money or providing the best for each client?
- Goal Setting. Ask yourself: “Is this still my passion?” If so, spend the downtime after the wedding season to evaluate what is working and what is not. Set new goals and a realistic plan to reach them. Rethink marketing strategies and review collateral materials. You may receive a new outlook by simply changing your color scheme or changing your approach.
* Be sure to check with your doctor for recommendations if you have health issues.
These are just a few suggestions. Is there anything in particular that has helped prevent you from reaching burnout? ACPWC would love to hear it. Please share with us in the comments below.