Working in technology sales, most experience peaks and troughs with their mental health. Between meeting sales quotas, sustaining high energy levels and balancing the thrill of a win with the disappointment of a loss, it can be very easy to get caught up in a downward spiral. Particularly at the moment with altered social and workplace arrangements in many places across the world, burning out can easily happen. Some of the most obvious signs of mental stress include chronic fatigue, weight loss or gain, panic attacks, nausea and loss of concentration. But there are some ways you can help yourself.
Here are 5 ways to avoid this happening and keeping a healthy work-life balance while working in IT sales.
1. Move Your Body
No surprise that exercise has a significant correlation to having more energy and focus. It’s extremely important for someone in a sedentary job given the lack of natural exercise. Physical activity generally improves your appetite and sleep patterns as well. In most cases people who exercise regularly are found to be less irritable, tired, bloated or stressed. Not to mention it significantly decreases the risk of most major health issues. It’s just a case of doing it.
Planning sessions in your calendar or diary is commonly the best way to hold yourself accountable. And the excuse of not having time is rarely an honest evaluation. Whether it’s an early morning session, lunch time or straight after work, there’s always an option. It’s a matter of prioritising it in your day.
2. Balanced Diet
As important as exercise is, your diet is just as crucial. The 70/30 rule applies to the vast majority. This being 70% of your weight loss/gain is attributed to diet. Weight gain is one of the most common reasons for feeling discouraged, frustrating, uncomfortable and depressed. A healthy diet can significantly lessen these feelings and burnout symptoms.
If you’re coupling a poor diet with sedentary lifestyle, you’re again leaving yourself vulnerable to a variety of health conditions such as high blood pressure, diabetes, stroke, heart attack or cancer. Talk to a nutritionist, follow a diet app, ask a friend or family member to hold you accountable or sign up to a diet program.
3. Environment & Surrounds
Your workspace and living space has a massive impact on your mood, without question. Something as simple as making sure your desk is neat and tidy and having some motivational or fun things around can impact your state of mind more than you might think. Work out what your secret recipe is and set up your workspace to create a positive impact.
On a slightly different note, I quite like chapter six of Jordan Peterson’s book 12 Rules For Life which is titled “Set your house in perfect order before you criticise the world.” Meaning stop doing what you know to be wrong, have humility, and if you cannot keep peace within your own household, you don’t have the right to place blame elsewhere. What I take from this is don’t blame burning out on external factors like Covid-19 when there are a plethora of internal things you could be doing to improve your situation.
“Who and what we surround ourselves with is who and what we become.”
Through many years of research it’s been proven that having a mentor in the workplace fast tracks learning and career progression. A good mentor also helps to boost morale and productivity for both parties involved. If you do not have a mentor, reach out to HR or your manager and see if a mentorship program can be implemented. Seeking this outside of work is also possible by following inspirational leaders or influencers within your field or outside.
5. Know When to Switch Off
Most of us are guilty of working or checking emails outside of hours or on holidays. In fact, being glued to our phones, tablets or laptops in our spare time in general. It is easier said than done but learning to put technology away or on silent can make a massive impact to your sense of fulfillment and mood. It is important to make the most of time with loved ones, reading that book, watching that TV show you’ve been meaning to for a while, exercising, cooking or anything else that brings you joy. If you do this while being completely disconnected from work and perhaps technology as a whole, it will generally improve your happiness and help avoid burning out.
What are some of the ways you ensure the mental health and wellbeing of yourself as a technology sales professional, or the wellbeing of your sales team?
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