Small business burnout is on the rise: Here’s how to ensure it doesn’t happen to you

There are many ways to reward yourself without spending money. Picture: Getty.
There are many ways to reward yourself without spending money. Picture: Getty.

When you start a small business, there’s a lot of hard work that goes on without reward or recognition, and sometimes even remuneration.

So how can you keep morale high by both looking after your employees and showing yourself some self-love, without sending your business into debt?

We’ve asked around the small business community for some of their brightest ideas. But first, have you thought about leasing a new car as a reward?

Treat yourself to a new set of wheels

Why can’t leasing a car be seen as a reward for hard work, not an endless cost?

We all want to be recognised, yet the tireless work of many small business owners often isn’t. Plus, they’re typically so busy, that they rarely take time to treat themselves.

The Mitsubishi Motors Business Advantage (MMBA) believes in rewarding small businesses. Essentially a vehicle plan for small business owners, MMBA bundles all your vehicle needs into one flexible, fully maintained operating lease – freeing up your cash to put back into the business.

Get into the top spec without the upfront costs. Like this brand new Triton GSR!

Get around in style. Picture: Supplied

MMBA bundles are subject to terms and conditions, so always make sure you read the fine print.

Detox from the digital

One entire, interrupted day off is a favourite self-reward for Shawn Richards, Owner & Expedition Co-ordinator at Ultimate Kilimanjaro.

“I like to include a digital detox as part of this, by turning off my phone and stepping away from the screen,” says Shawn.

“Being a business owner comes with a lot of responsibilities and it can be difficult to switch off. Taking a day to do something purely for myself is a true luxury.”

Release some endorphins

“Some people may see keeping fit as a chore, but I absolutely love it,” admits Ashley Chubin, COO of Flyhi delivery services.

“It’s one of the best ways that I reward myself – I love the rush of endorphins and it helps me feel energised and enthusiastic.”

Exercise is a great way to reward yourself. Picture: Getty

Ashley says exercise is also a way of showing herself that she deserves some self-care.

“Going for a long run, or taking a day to go on a hike is good for my body and my brain. It’s a way for me to switch off and unwind, and it helps me to be in the present moment instead of staying stuck staring at a screen,” she says.

Hire a cleaner

The first reward Maika Schumann gave herself after establishing her small business, Mummas Beans, was a cleaner.

“I’m still in a phase where I put all the profits back into my business, but I wanted to be intentional about celebrating small wins and milestones so that having this business wouldn’t just feel like ‘another job’,” says Maika.

“The cleaner came first, now I also get a massage regularly!”

Adopt a holiday mindset

 Sarah from Wandercooks has introduced a ‘holiday mindset’ to her workplace, where every week is a reward for employees and it always feels like a holiday.

“We’ve built flexibility around our business to fit in lifestyle activities throughout the week, so we never dread our weekdays,” she says.

Mid-afternoon walks help to decompress and plan ahead. Picture: Getty.

“This includes Monday morning business meetings at a local cafe, mid-afternoon walks to decompress and plan out the remainder of the day, and taking five-minute mini-breaks to stretch, journal, read, or step outside for some fresh air.”