Self-Care & Being A Virtual Assistant – Burnout Part 1

Self-Care Burnout Pt. 1

Practicing self-care as a virtual assistant is essential to protect you from burnout. Freedom and flexibility are the number one reasons for becoming a VA. While it can certainly start that way, without the practice of self-care, even running your own VA business can lead to burnout. Burnout is not something that only employees face. 

According to this Harvard Business Review article, there are six main causes of burnout.  We’re going to be discussing each one and what to do as a virtual assistant. 

We’ll be discussing the topic of burnout for the remainder of this blog series focusing on self-care and being a VA. Make sure to read all this month’s blog series! 

1. Workload

Overextending your client workload is a common practice among VAs. It comes from two mindset traits – scarcity and an employee mindset. 

Maybe it took you longer than you liked to gain all the clients you have now or they came all at once and you are suddenly overwhelmed with your workload. You don’t want to turn any work away because you are scared that it won’t be there again if and when you need it. 

Having an employee mindset is causing you to believe that whatever someone asks you to do you must do. 

It’s no wonder either of these is the reason for burnout. Being in a scarcity mindset and fearful all the time is truly exhausting. Feeling like an employee in your own business would make most people want to quit. 

In order to manage your workload to avoid burnout determines what mindset you are taking on and then address it head on. 

2. Perceived lack of control

The number one reasons for becoming a VA is to have freedom and flexibility. In fact, it’s been said that freedom is the new wealth. Perceiving that you’re not in control over your own VA business when it is exactly the reason you became a VA is definitely a reason you can be experiencing burnout symptoms. 

To regain control you must change your perception. Lack of control is also synonymous with making difficult choices. Figure out what or who you feel has control and change your perception of the situation and the choices to be made. Know that the ability to make a choice of your own is the most control you’ll ever have regardless of the outcome. 

3. Reward

As a business owner, your reward is most closely tied to the amount of money you are making. The great part of owning your own business is that you get to choose how much money you make and have the ability to raise your rates. 

It’s also important to find other ways to reward yourself. It could be taking long lunches, taking Friday’s off, or giving yourself a reward when you reach business milestones. Never miss an opportunity to reward yourself!

In the next blog we are going to cover the last three main causes of burnout:

  • Community (negative)
  • Fairness
  • Values mismatch

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