Ten- to twelve-hour days are the norm. You work weekends and you don’t take vacations. But research shows that rather than getting more done, business leaders who are all work and no play simply don’t perform as well as those who spend enough time doing things other than work.
Research has shown that burnout stems primarily from three things: Too few outside activities, too little sleep and being connected to the office 24-7. Many leaders today are working 72 hour plus weeks — more than 13 or more hours a day on weekdays and more than five hours on weekends.
Start by getting enough sleep. Studies show that most people are getting only about six hours; you’ll want to make a commitment to get at least eight. Put a focus on your health and make exercise a daily priority. Exercise doesn’t have to be fancy. Small changes, such as walking every day during your lunch hour, can pay big dividends.
Plan for and take your vacation time. The amount of unused vacation time for the average American is climbing, especially among those with leadership positions. Don’t leave vacations to chance — and make sure all of the members of your team take time off, too. Make an effort to carve out unplugged time with friends and family. To turn the cell phone off periodically, you’ll need to get better at delegating and have people you can count on when you aren’t available, but it’s well worth the effort. Taking time for yourself and doing what’s right for you is incredibly important. Making the commitment to do the right thing for you and your family — even more so.