Stylist Success Series: Combating Stylist Burnout

Burnout is a real thing and is experienced in every industry. It can manifest physically, mentally, or emotionally and is our body’s way of letting us know it’s too stressed.

Physical Burnout can come in the form of tension, ill health, decreased energy, sleep issues, or even become evident in the way our skin feels and looks.

Mental Burnout can consist of decreased creativity in a field you used to love, a sudden lack of motivation, repeated negative thoughts or self-doubt or problems focusing.

Emotional Burnout can affect stress hormones and other bodily functions (also, sleep) and result in anxiety and irritability. You may also recognize it as that nagging sense of dread you may feel every morning before work – or on Sundays, otherwise known as the Sunday Scaries.

There are plenty of other manifestations of burnout, so it’s important to try to recognize them quickly. I know we can’t all feel 100% all of the time, that would be impossible – but when burnout starts to affect our careers and home life, or things we once enjoyed, it’s time to reevaluate our situations.

Remember – You can’t give from an empty cup. You’ve got to fill yours first so that you can give to others. Don’t feel negatively toward yourself and what you are experiencing. Try to offer the same compassion to yourself as you would to others.

Ways to Combat Burnout:

Take care of yourself.
Prioritize a good night’s sleep. If you aren’t already – begin to be more conscious of what you’re putting in your body. Chemicals, food, etc. These can impact our mental, as well as physical states. A clearer state of mind may help you find your footing and direction.

Your time is valuable!
Only share your time with people who value it, and you.

Do something you love.
Take time for yourself regularly. Can’t find time? Make it! It’s so important to keep your mind stimulated by doing things you love. What does that look like? Maybe it’s a hot shower and a good book. It could be painting classes or joining a gym. It looks different for everyone, but the end result is the same: JOY!

Don’t forget – Take time off!
Take full advantage of available vacation or PTO. A change of scenery will do your heart good. You’ll be able to come back refreshed and renewed. Can’t afford to ‘get away’? Staycations are totally underrated. Spend the week lounging in bed or exploring a local park or museum. Sometimes it can feel good to not “have a plan” so just go with the flow of your day.

Take a class!
Explore a new trend, style or method. Sometimes you just need a spark to relight your passion. You’ll become stronger as a stylist and enjoy the company of other passionate folks who will help inspire you!

Prioritize what matters.
What are the most important people and things in your life? Decide what matters and be sure to prioritize those things first.

Meditate or practice mindfulness.
Don’t forget to breathe. Spend a few moments every morning and evening preparing for the day, and then reflecting on it. Become aware of what is bringing you joy and what might need to change.

Still feeling burnt out? Make a change!
Still not finding the peace you’ve been looking for? Maybe it’s time for a change. Reevaluate by creating a list of things you would like to see changed or you would like to do differently. Figure out what is within your power to change, and give it your all. That might look like a new salon, a new state, a new partner or a new career field. You don’t have to just “suffer through” burnout. If you genuinely feel that you’re ready to try something new, go for it. Life is too short to be unhappy.

Remember to be compassionate with yourself, and understand that you’re only one person. Also remember that everyone goes through ups and downs and it’s normal to sometimes feel a little lackluster. Be sure to take time to uncover what works best for you. Your mental, emotional and physical health are what matter most.