When I was working as a church communicator, I distinctly remember walking into my office on a Monday morning, shutting the door, and then just staring at the dashboard in my project management software that served as my weekly to-do list. I knew I needed to get started tackling those tasks, but instead, I just sat for (more than) a few minutes because I knew that I could work endlessly all day and still not even get half of what I needed to get done accomplished. I also knew that tasks that weren’t even on that list would come my way at alarming speeds. I was overwhelmed. 

Church communicators wear many hats. At any given time they might be social media managers, graphic designers, event planners, writers, website developers, team coordinators, print shop managers, tech support, and about a million other unnamed roles. So, whether you’ve worked in church communications or not, it’s important that you come alongside your church communicator, support them in their role, and recognize when they are on the verge of church communicator burnout.

Here are a few tell-tell signs to look for that might indicate your church communicator is overwhelmed, as well as ways to help them alleviate stress.

They’re Trying to Do it All, All the Time

If your church communicator is running around like crazy and multitasking on a hundred different levels, it might be a sign that they are overwhelmed. Watch for incomplete tasks, a scattered brain, and a lack of delegation. 

How You Can Help

Ask if there are any tasks that you can take off their plate. Be willing to fold bulletins, proofread an article, or take over the planning of an event. Also, work to help them prioritize tasks and delegate tasks where possible. 

They’re Taking Everything a Little Too Seriously

Yes, the work a church communicator does is extremely important, but if they’re taking everything so seriously that everything is critical and nothing is fun, then they might be overwhelmed.

How You Can Help

Kindly help them to view things with an eternal perspective (2 Corinthians 4:18). Then, help them to find humor in day-to-day situations and general church communicator tasks. This article is a great place to start!

They’re Beating Themselves Up Over Little Mistakes

Everyone makes a typo, misses a deadline, or forgets a small task every once in a while. However, if your church communicator is dwelling on these mistakes and feeling defeated, they might be overwhelmed.

How You Can Help

In times like these, Biblical encouragement goes a long way. Point out areas where you’ve seen growth and/or success. Remind them that everyone makes mistakes, and help them come up with a plan to prevent mistakes in the future. 

They’re Dealing with Difficult People

Even in the church, relationships with people can be hard at times. Sometimes personalities clash or views misalign. Your church communicator may be feeling overwhelmed if they are spending a lot of their time dealing with people who make things more difficult for them. 

How You Can Help

Sometimes, the best thing you can do during this church communicator challenge is to stand in their corner. Back them up on a decision they made and speak highly of the work they are doing to other people. That way, when difficult people come along, they know that they have someone who will be there to encourage and support them. 

They’ve Lost Sight of Their Purpose

When a church communicator gets bogged down in the weeds and loses sight of the bigger picture of the work they do, they might be overwhelmed. It’s easy to forget that this work has eternal effects and is for the sake of the Gospel when to-do lists are long and tedious tasks are numerous.

How You Can Help

Remind them that the work they are doing makes an eternal difference. Share specific stories where life change has happened because of something they’ve done. If you know that a guest planned a visit because of the church website or someone became a believer at an event they promoted, tell them. It will go a long way.

Next Steps

Another way to support your church communicator is to encourage them to visit the Church Relevance Course Shop. There, they’ll find a variety of training courses designed to help church leaders break through barriers and receive encouragement that they can carry with them when things get tough.