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How to Avoid Burnout — Molly Fletcher’s Tips on Doing an Energy Audit

August 2, 2023 Kelsey Rambo

For most, summer is the long-awaited time to kick back, relax and enjoy the sun with family and friends. However, for many women leaders in the workplace, the season brings the additional pressure of an expanding social calendar, kids out of school, on top of a full-time job.

The result? A summer burn no amount of SPF can protect against: BURNOUT.

According to McKinsey & Company, 42 percent of women report being burned out, a rate that’s higher than the previous year and much higher than the rate for men.

What’s going on? Why are women experiencing burnout at higher rates than men in the workplace? The same McKinsey study found that women in the workplace spend more time on “office housekeeping” and do more to help their employees navigate work-life challenges, relative to their male peers. In fact, women are 60 percent more likely to focus on emotional support of their teams and employees.

In addition, Linkage, a SHRM company, discovered that women leaders may be leaning on other workplace practices that can hold them back. According to a recent Linkage survey, 66 percent of women say they are a “perfectionist” in how they approach work. And 81 percent of women report that they say “yes” to all work requests, even unreasonable ones.

Women leaders are being pulled in every direction, using every minute of the day to prioritize supporting others—and they are overworking themselves to perfectly complete every single request that comes across their desk.

The summer sun’s rays are shining through our windows, the warm weather is inviting us out to play, and we have opportunities for personally and professionally fulfilling experiences. If only our schedules were not jam-packed, leaving us feeling like we simply do not have anything left to give!

Bottom Line: This way of working and living is simply unsustainable for women leaders. Our energy—how we use it, why we use it and where we apply it—is one of the most important assets for women leaders to effectively and thoughtfully manage as they ascend in the leadership ranks.

Molly Fletcher, trailblazing sports agent and author, understands the power of effectively managing our energy each moment of the day to unleash our full potential. Molly’s latest book, The Energy Clock: 3 Simple Steps to Create a Life Full of ENERGY—and Live Your Best Every Day, outlines best practices and real-life examples to adjust your mindset and accomplish more meaningful work with fewer distractions. It is a powerful system that enables women leaders to give more of themselves to what’s most important, wasting less time and resources on what’s not.

In her book, Molly introduces a game-changing idea: Every leader should conduct an Energy Audit. This system gives you the tools to examine all your energy outputs and determine where you are gaining and losing energy throughout the day.

“If we don’t decide what is most important to us, the world will decide for us,” writes Molly in her book.

The main goal of an Energy Audit is to:

  • Maximize your energizers.
  • Be more efficient with the in-between.
  • Eliminate or manage your drainers.

So, how can you complete an Energy Audit and take a meaningful step toward reclaiming your time and energy for what matters? Follow this three-step approach to complete your Energy Audit—and avoid burnout:


An imbalanced placement of our energy is directly correlated with the feeling of burnout. “There’s no better decision than to align your energy with your present moment,” writes Molly. “It’s the only moment any of us have.”

By becoming aware of what you spend your time on, you can identify and maximize your energizers.

First, identify how you use your time each day. What tasks are you spending the most time on during work hours? What projects or initiatives take up most of your workday? Which people tend to fill your inbox or need the most individualized support? How much time is spent on tactical work versus long-term strategic work? After you close your laptop, what fills your personal time?

Write up a sample schedule or a representative day and really think about how you are directing your time and your energy. No task is too small to include on your list!


Now that you understand how you spend your time, you need to analyze the impact this schedule has on you. Examine each part of your day and identify whether the task or initiative energizes you. Do you get good energy from doing it? Does it excite you or make you feel engaged?

Next, identify which task or initiative drains you, leaving you feeling disengaged, exhausted or even upset. There is no disputing that stress is the number one energy drainer. Whether it be stress over a project deadline, anxiety around your workload, the constant “go” schedule—or my personal summer favorite, FOMO (Fear Of Missing Out)—there are many ways that stress comes into our daily lives. By identifying which tasks spike your stress levels, you can isolate the “drainers” on your schedule.


Now that you have identified your “energizers” and “drainers,” it’s time to reclaim your Energy Clock. Our goal each day is to spend more time on the “energizers,” and mitigate the impact of the “drainers.”

Begin by considering your personal and professional goals. Are the “drainer” activities necessary to reach your goals? If so, consider how you approach this work and identify new ways to engage in this task. Are there thinking partners or advocates you can work with to make this work more fulfilling and less draining?

If a “drainer” activity isn’t aligned with any of your strategic goals, congratulations! You have just discovered a great opportunity to delegate or eliminate a task and reclaim some of your time and energy.

Even after you pare down your task list, you still may find yourself feeling overwhelmed. Molly recommends that we redirect our energy to the present moment and prioritize tasks that we can accomplish right now. This small shift will result in instant gratification, leading to more fulfilling days.


This summer, we all have the power to slather on the SPF and avoid the biggest “burn”—burnout. When we learn how to channel our energy, we unlock a new and more effective approach to our workday, giving us more time to enjoy all that summer, and life, has to offer.

To learn more about Molly Fletcher’s strategy to prevent burnout, check out The Energy Clock or catch Molly Fletcher live as she returns to the Women in Leadership Institute™ on November 13–16, 2023. Learn more about this transformative leadership development experience for women leaders.


Dark haired woman watches from audience of conference event

Women in Leadership Institute

NOV. 13–16, 2023 | Orlando, Florida, or Virtual
A 4-day immersive learning experience designed to equip women leaders with actionable strategies to overcome the hurdles women often face in the workplace.

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