Hello there, readers! It’s me again, back at it with some self-targeted advice. I experienced some hardcore burn-out in the recent months and am only just now realizing that I show some very obvious tell-tale signs before I completely become useless to all my creative projects. I wanted to compile these signs here so both you and I can recognize them and identify them when we feel ourselves becoming less and less motivated. Usually they are indicators that I just need to step back and give myself a break from my work before starting back on it so here’s hoping both you and I can recognize these signs better in the future.
1. Constantly feel guilty and like you should be doing more.
I am the queen of self-induced guilt. I feel like I should always be doing something. All the time. Life is short after all? This sign usually shows up as a sort of guilt-inducing self talk. It tends to come in the form of phrases such as “You should REALLY be working on X.” and “Why didn’t you do X, today?? You had so much time!”.
2. You procrastinate.
I can procrastinate a lot in general but I find my procrastination spikes to new peaks when I am actively burning out. I find myself consistently putting something off, that is a sign of burn-out right there.
3. You feel tired all the time.
Forcing myself to work on something makes me twice as tired than normal. This is because I have to spend energy making myself motivated and then spend energy actually doing the task. And what’s even worse is it’s often a task I once enjoyed which segues right into my next point which is…
4. You can’t remember the last time you enjoyed your work.
Generally I burn out on tasks that I once enjoyed quite a lot. They’re generally hobbies. This means I CHOOSE to do them for FUN. At least I used to. But sometimes I can’t remember the last time I wanted to draw or work on my story.
5. You feel uninspired.
Writer’s or Artist’s block persists when I am becoming burnt-out. It’s not that I don’t care. It’s just my creative juices tend to not flow as freely. It’s almost like those times in school when you find yourself staring at a math problem of sorts FOREVER. Then you get up, walk away from it, and come back to find yourself knowing the solution all along. You just needed a break in order to remember it.
6. You feel exhausted before you even do tasks.
Similarly to the “being tired all the time” issue, you find that the mere thought of doing certain tasks makes you tired. It’s this weird pull of wanting to do something but also DEFINITELTY NOT wanting to do something.
So, now that we got the signs out of the way, how do we fix it? What is the solution? Usually it’s simple. Usually its something like taking a break for a day or two. Sometimes its taking a LONG break depending on how intense the burn-out is. Sometimes it’s finding a new source of inspiration to reignite one’s passion for what they originally loved. It often depends on the individual. But whatever the case may be, remember creation should be fun. And if it’s not, it is not a crime to stop creating. Often life feels like a chore and it’s our own faults. Awhile back I came to the realization that many of expectations I felt weighing on my chest were my own. And while that’s was a hard pill to swallow, there was a bright-side to that scenario. It was in my power to fix it.
The thing is it is often our own expectations that lead us to burn out. And it sucks. But it also means that there is something I can do about it.
One thought on “Signs you’re Experiencing Burn-Out”
I do think that burnout comes a result of pursuing the wrong thing. If something was my true passion, and I’d spend my entire days on them and feel grateful I could do it. Puts a lot of things in perspective, like if I’m really pursuing the right thing. Anyway, thanks for this post!
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