13 Ways Past Burnout

Call it Spring Fever, call it competing priorities, call it whatever. For whatever reason I am burned out this week. And it shows, especially on this blog. Complaining isn’t going to help anything so let’s focus on what does.

There comes a time, thief, when the jewels cease to sparkle, when the gold loses its luster, when the throne room becomes a prison.

-King Cyrus, Conan the Barbarian

How to Overcome Burnout

No need to discuss what burnout is or how you know you’re toast. Everyone who chases big rocks has been there and likely will be again so the question is really:

How do you avoid burnout in the first place and how do you bounce back once your are?

Admit Your Mistakes

I am a big proponent of personal accountability. Even if nobody besides yourself notices you’ve been slipping, admitting a problem is the first step to fixing one.

Things I Messed Up

For the sake of brevity, let’s just limit the list to this week on this website:

  1. My Friday video posts keep getting messed up.
  2. Skipped a few posts: I am trying for a M-W-F schedule and had a great streak going. Not so this week.
  3. Haven’t kept up with other blogs, comments, Diggs, etc.
  4. Failed to prepare next week’s articles in advance.
  5. Wanted to continue posts in the theme of service but slipped.
  6. Slacked on the prompt reply to commenters.
  7. Still haven’t hooked up my email notification service to the blog posts.

And that’s just the list for this site!

Contemplate the Roots

Time got away from me. I spent more time in the past 3 weeks consuming content rather than creating it. Also, I deviated from my core plan of timely articles in favor of writing back articles in pursuit of the Notebook Project. Multiple commitments to my full time job AND my booming side web design business left me feeling drained. Last week being the tax deadline and the shooting annaversary didn’t help my mood any at all.

Celebrate Your Victories

It’s not like I spent my time doing nothing. As I mentioned my web design business is doing wonderfully and I have been writing lots of articles about my Germany travels and my Israel archeology trip for this site.

There have also been a lot of house rennovations going on lately making Casa de Ted a much nicer place to be. My Kung Fu studies have helped my surgery recovery immensely. So much so I have been walking and hiking at length nearly every other day! While it might not sound like much, if you spent the last 4 years in crutches, casts, or under the surgeon’s knife you might think differently!

All in all, things are going pretty well!

Things I’m Doing Now

The best way I know out of this funk is movement and progress. I need to find the fun again. Here’s what I’ve been up to:

  1. Destress with a Good BookI read MASH and just started Josh’s new book.
  2. Change Your Scenery – Heading to Blacksburg, Virginia Home of the Fighting Gobblers for the annual Spring Game.
  3. Pay Your Respects – Lots of things worse than being stressed.
  4. Stay the Course – Keep working your plan for your projects. A lot of writing has taken place for Cubicle Warrior. You’ll see a monster post (and a dozen sub-articles) about Germany come Monday.
  5. Exercise Everyday I’ve wanted to skip working out. Luckily, I have standing appointments with Kung Fu and the gym that I cannot break.
  6. Friends See above note about Spring Game.
  7. Switch to Decaf – I did this at the start of the month. Rather, I am now limited to one cup of coffee or soda per day. I think it’s helping!
  8. Spend time with other productive people I helped an old friend brew beer. And sample the last batch we made! The man really needs to drop his software gig and do that full time.
  9. Just Move! – Been doing a lot of hiking lately. Working wonders for my feet.
  10. Learn Something New – A personal theory that fun is the opposite of boring. Fight boredom by learning new stuff. Enter Teaching company history videos!
  11. Plan the Next Vacations – Trips to Savannah, NY, LA, Baltimore, Boston, and more set for this summer. South Korea is in the works for late fall! China in fall 2011 is looking very likely, too!

Your Part

I left the 2 biggest components for last:

12. Enlist Help

Hence this post!

What do you to do bounce back from burn out? What would you add? How do you avoid it? Share with the rest of us …. I’ll be back

13. Unplug!

I’m signing off right now and going to the Spring Football game at Virginia Tech. I’m outta here! See you all next week!

Comments

  1. avatar Jonathan says:

    Burnout, excessively busy or just plain tired? I don’t know anyone else who, by their own volition, tries to accomplish so many meaningful diverse tasks on a regularly scheduled basis. Pace yourself young man. Quality (which I know you strive for) versus quantity.

  2. I think the excessively busy part just made me tired. No matter. A trip to Virginia Tech over the weekend and another to Savannah this upcoming weekend and I am re-charged! Thanks for looking out for me!

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