Updated: Mar 31
BY ARIELLE LAWSON | COMMUNICATIONS INTERN
Burnout is real. It’s missing a meal, getting less than 7 hours of sleep, being behind on work, and feeling like you never have time for yourself. In today’s bustling world, it’s easy to get wrapped up in your duties and forget about what you owe yourself. We’re so concerned about what’s next that we neglect the negative effects our busy lifestyles create within us.
While everyone experiences stress and burnout, leaders experience higher levels of the two due to their roles. According to the Center for Creative Leadership, “eighty-eight percent of leaders report that work is a primary source of stress in their lives and that having a leadership role increases the level of stress.” Being a leader is rewarding and allows you to greatly impact your community, but it’s important to recognize when you need to step back. We’ve crafted some resources to help you slow down and reduce some of the stress that comes with the demands of leading. After all, you should care for yourself the way you care for those around you. Keep reading to find out how you can!
The first step to reducing stress is to acknowledge that you are stressed and why. We must take time to have a moment with ourselves and reflect on the themes in our recent moods and actions. If we fail to check in with ourselves, the burnout we are experiencing may go unnoticed. When we are aware of our feelings and what factors cause them, we can manage them better. Our Sabbath As Resistance reflection guide serves to do just that. With a focus on awareness, balance, and connection, the Sabbath As Resistance reflection sheet encourages leaders to be honest with themselves. It’s about time you do something for yourself, so download the reflection sheets at the end of this article and work toward a healthier, less stressed version of yourself.
Asking for help when you need support seems like the easiest solution to reducing burnout but sometimes it’s the hardest thing for a leader to do. As a figurehead, it’s easy to feel you should have everything under control. However, this is not always the case. At the end of the day, we are all human and sometimes we need the assistance of others. Never be afraid to ask for help when you feel overwhelmed or don’t understand something. Here at St. Pete Underground, we offer one-on-one coaching for our leaders. We know how stressful it can be to support and uplift your community and we want to do the same for you so you can continue all the brilliant work you do! Connect with our team to request a coach who can guide you during your ministry challenges and goals.
One of the best ways to minimize stress is to do nothing at all. When you hold a great deal of responsibility, you’re always on the move. As soon as one task is finished, it’s on to the next. While moving through your day, your thoughts are crowded with what’s on your schedule for tomorrow or next week. It’s hard to catch a break in your schedule. This time shouldn't include any work-related activities and instead should be filled with things you enjoy doing or simply spent doing nothing at all.
A great way to spend your relaxation time is to meditate. This will help reduce stress by forcing you to ease your thoughts and focus on the present. You can practice this today using the guided meditations on our website! Jen Lantz, co-leader of the microchurch 727, deems our online guided meditations as one of her favorite resources that the St. Pete Underground offers.
“It allows me to set aside time to be still and re-center myself in Christ through meditation,” she shared. Maybe this resource can help you do the same; it’ll only take 10 minutes out of your day to test it out!
Though rewarding, being a leader can be quite demanding and difficult. As long as you actively care for yourself just as you care for those in your community, you will be able to lower your stress levels. The next time you feel you’re experiencing burnout, remember the three R’s—reflect, reach out, and relax. Acknowledge your feelings, ask for help when you need it, and always make time for yourself!
Sabbath As Resistance Resource
Check back here next week for the final piece of our March Resource Space blog series. You can find these tips available to download and other helpful resources we’ll be featuring at www.stpeteunderground.com/resources.