Creatively burned out? This might help you get back on track
Are you currently feeling burned out? Believe me, I understand. It doesn’t take much to get you into that funk, but oh, how hard it is to climb out of it.
A lot of the times, the impression is that you just have too much stuff to do. The reality, however, can be a combination of things. Maybe what you’ve been doing is just not interesting enough. Maybe you’ve been doing too much of one thing, no matter how awesome it is, and you’re just plain bored.
No matter what got you into that state, you feel you just need some C-H-A-N-G-E.
Yet change is a play in perception more than anything else, isn’t it? For example, consider any situation you’ve been living with for a considerable time period. It could be the house you live in, your family or friends with whom you interact, etc..
Now, think about the different moods— whether positive or negative— you’ve had while being around that situation. In other words: has your attitude changed, even though the general environment around you hasn’t? If you can change when things around you don’t, then I’ll submit that the one actually changing is that guy or girl reading this right now.
And if you can change unconsciously, you can surely change at will. This includes changing your attitude towards that lit matchstick causing the burnout in the first place.
Now I’m not saying you’re not supposed to change those things outside of you that you find so easily lead you into that funk. Go ahead and move things around, or if you need to, destroy them (ehem, figuratively speaking, of course). More often than not, however, you need to change your attitude about things before you even decide to do something. At the most foundational level, you need to believe you can do something to change it, before you can go ahead and take action.
Therein lies another trap in the burnout syndrome cycle. You feel you can’t do anything about it, so you don’t do anything about it… and not doing anything about it is taken in your little brain as proofthat you can’t do anything about it. Do you get where I’m going?
Stop for a minute (after you finish reading this, of course 😉 ), and consider these questions:
1- Can you suddenly change your attitude about something, even before that something actually changes?
2- If so, can you start taking action to change things around before you can be sure that you can get the job done?
3- If not, can you think for a bit, or better yet, make a list of what is holding you back from taking action?
Most of the time, during a burnout period, all it takes is for one to sit quietly, consider the situation in a balanced manner, and objectively weigh the positives and negatives. Most of the times I do this, I discover all sorts of misconceptions and misinterpretations taken in as fact. Sometimes all it takes is to cast doubt on a few of those “false facts,” and suddenly a world of possibilities opens up ahead of us.
Did this help refresh the burn?
Alex Rodríguez develops high-end digital marketing campaigns that transform brands and attract business. He is the author of Digital BACON. His clientele has run the gamut from top-level advertising agencies and Fortune500 corporations, through national broadcast networks, to award-winning production firms. He heads up the team at YMMY Marketing. Connect with Alex via LinkedIn or Twitter