10 ways to keep yourself from burning out

A lot of us have been going high speed for months with little or no break.

The nonprofit sector is notorious for overworking people, and the pandemic has multiplied that tendency.

It’s causing people to burn out.

It will cause you to burn out if you don’t take action.

Here are something you can do, from the Wild Apricot Blog, at 10 Ways to Definitely Burn Out as a Nonprofit Employee:

  1. Take a vacation. We all need time away. Make it happen!
  2. Take a break. Take tiny vacations every day. Like don’t work through lunch.
  3. Learn to say no. If you don’t say no now and then, you’ll burn out — and that will be a big no that you aren’t in control of!
  4. Outsource what you can. There are some things only you can do. Focus on those things. Everything else, find outsiders. They are faster, probably better at it, and most of all, they aren’t you!
  5. Really take care of yourself. Exercise, meditation, getting outside, talking to people you care about, read, listen to music. These things really help!
  6. Ask for a raise. Don’t let nonprofit poverty mentality be your guiding force. You should get paid what you’re worth. And you should leave jobs that can’t do that.
  7. Have friends outside of work. Remember talking about things that had nothing to do with your job? Wasn’t that cool? It was healthy too!
  8. Don’t ignore your exhaustion. If you’re tired all the time, you are in a personal emergency. Deal with it now!
  9. Don’t be a martyr. You’re no good to yourself, your cause, or your colleagues if you burn out. Martyrs might look like heroes, but they’re usually a problem for everyone else in the long run.
  10. Talk about how you’re feeling. This so often helps you uncover what you most need to change.


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The future of fundraising is not about social media, online video, or SEM. It’s not about any technology, medium, or technique. It’s about donors. If you need to raise funds from donors, you need to study them, respect them, and build everything you do around them. And the future? It’s already here. More.

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Jeff BrooksJeff Brooks has been serving the nonprofit community for more than 35 years and blogging about it since 2005. He considers fundraising the most noble of pursuits and hopes you’ll join him in that opinion. You can reach him at jeff [at] jeff-brooks [dot] com. More.


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The future of fundraising is not about social media, online video, or SEM. It’s not about any technology, medium, or technique. It’s about donors. If you need to raise funds from donors, you need to study them, respect them, and build everything you do around them. And the future? It’s already here. More.

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About the blogger

Jeff Brooks has been serving the nonprofit community for more than 30 years and blogging about it since 2005. He considers fundraising the most noble of pursuits and hopes you’ll join him in that opinion. You can reach him at jeff [at] jeff-brooks [dot] com.

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