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3 Ways Financial Advisors Can Maintain Work-Life Balance

Spring can often come with endless to-do lists for financial advisors. This means it’s a good time to check in on your overall well-being and work-life balance to avoid potential burnout.

Unfortunately, burnout is a common pitfall in the wealth management industry. A staggering 77% of advisors say they’ve experienced burnout, and close to half report that their stress has increased in the last five years. 

Moreover, most advisors leave the field early on, with one recent report stating “72% of rookie advisors fail out of the industry.” Another report found that the four-year retention rate for advisors hovers around just 16%. 

If you don’t want to become another statistic, then it’s important that you address burnout before it becomes a problem. Here’s how to prevent burnout at work, allowing you to maintain productivity and client satisfaction throughout your career. Let’s dive in!

Understanding Burnout in the Financial Sector

Financial advisors face a unique set of stressors in their line of work. The demand on your time and emotional labor involved in managing client relationships, the constant pressure to deliver results, and the ever-changing regulatory landscape can all contribute to feeling overwhelmed. Recognizing the triggers and symptoms of burnout is the first step to keeping them under control.

Common symptoms include:

  • Irritability and/or apathy
  • Lower work performance, such as missing deadlines 
  • Insomnia 
  • Low energy and difficulty concentrating
  • Changes in eating habits
  • Headaches
  • Depression and anxiety

How to Overcome Burnout at Work: 3 Steps for a Healthy Work-Life Balance

1. Create boundaries

The first line of defense against burnout is setting clear boundaries between your work and personal life, which can be especially difficult if you work and live in the same space. While the flexibility of a work-from-home schedule is great, you may be more susceptible to remote work burnout if you don’t have clear boundaries between “work” and “home.” 

Related: Essential Tools for Remote-First Financial Advisors

But whether you’re in a corner office in the city or looking out into your backyard, there are a few ways you can set yourself up for success:

  • Stick to a schedule. Create a daily routine that includes set start and end times, and communicate that schedule to your colleagues and clients. If an email comes in after you’ve “clocked out,” remind yourself that it will still be there tomorrow!
  • Create a calming environment. Sometimes the small things can have the biggest impact – like the plant on your desk or your favorite podcast playing in the background. Make a list of ten small things that help you de-stress, and find ways to work them into your day. 
  • Take regular breaks. Block out dedicated time in your calendar for breaks, lunch, and exercise. Treat these breaks like appointments you can’t miss!

Additionally, it’s also a good idea to practice saying “no.” If your plate is already full, it’s okay to prioritize your well-being before you stretch yourself too thin. When you feel confident in your workload, you’re better prepared to serve your clients, too. 

Related: Keep Clients Happy and Grow Your Business with These Game-Changing Tools

2. Prioritize Self-Care

Self-care is a necessary part of overcoming burnout in your work life. Your version of self-care might look different from others, and that’s okay. If you’ve been off the self-care train for a while, you may also need to try out a few things to see what really works for you. Here are a few ways you can get started:

  • Get Moving. Regular physical activity is a powerful stress reliever and mood booster. Find an activity you enjoy, whether it’s a brisk walk in nature or a quick gym session before work.
  • Eating Well: Take time to grab your favorite drink before work a few days a week, and fuel your body with nutritious foods that will give you sustained energy throughout the day.
  • Practicing Mindfulness: Techniques like meditation and deep breathing can help you manage stress in the moment and improve overall mental well-being. Even a few minutes a day can make a difference!
  • Getting Enough Sleep: A well-rested mind is more productive and resilient and can set you up for a productive day ahead. 

3. Seek Support

Building a strong support network of friends and family members can be invaluable during busy periods. Consider reaching out to colleagues or a mentor when your stress levels are getting higher than normal to see if they have any tips or advice – sometimes just talking about your work stress with someone who “gets” it can help!

There are also professional networks for advisors, like Females & Finance, that can connect you with professionals who face similar work challenges.

While there’s no magic bullet for burnout, these strategies can help you stay afloat during the busy seasons that happen throughout the year. By regularly checking in on your stress, practicing self-care techniques, and finding a community of support to lean on, you can cultivate a better work-life balance in the long run.

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