It's here. Burning the edges off my energy and motivation. The thing I dread most.
For nearly five straight months I've written consistently every day, even if it's only a few words a day. But at the same time, I've been utterly frustrated at my inability to find time for research, which I so desperately need for the two novels I'm working on this year. I can write in short snatches of time, but I can't research in short snatches of time.
I recognize the symptoms of burnout all too well as I've been down this path too many times to count.
* Greater fatigue than usual
* Disinterest in writing and writing related activities
* Bleak outlook and feeling like I'll never make any real forward progress
* Difficulty mustering up the energy to care
The good news is that I've learned to recognize these warning signs a little earlier after much close personal experience. So this time I can begin to deal with it before it takes a deep hold on me.
My action plan:
* Dial back on my workaholic tendencies. I have a high stress job by day and push myself hard outside work nearly every waking hour. Time to chill and give myself permission to do nothing.
* Do some leisure reading. I haven't had nearly enough time to read for fun this year.
* Go out and exercise in a new venue. My life has consisted of walks with the dog around the neighborhood and the inside of the gym. I live in one of the most beautiful states in the union. I need to go out and experience it and refill my senses.
* Pull out some favorite movies and TV shows. Maybe watch my all time fave movie, Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan or drool over Steve McGarrett in some Hawaii Five-0 episodes from season 1.
* Eat something bad for me. I've been working my behind off at diet and exercise the last 9 weeks. I think it's time to eat something positively sinful and enjoy it. I don't know what exactly but it has to include chocolate...maybe peanut butter too. Maybe Hot Pockets too. 8-)
I thank the Lord that we have a three-day weekend coming up. I need to make up for lost veg time.
If you have any other suggestions for beating burnout, I'd love to hear them.