Burning Out

please take me on vacation like please

Lately I have had this strong, undeniable urge to get out of here. I’ve been fantasizing about laying on a beach for days on end, blasting through good books and sipping margaritas. Even sitting out by the pool will do. Obviously that’s not possible seeing as it’s February, but I can’t shake this feeling that I would just love to fall off the grid for a couple days, and clear my head.

I think I’m burning out. I feel guilty for feeling this way, as I don’t feel like I have been working nearly hard enough to classify as burnt out, but when I think back to January, and how crazy it was, and how recently my business has been the first thing on my mind when I wake up, and the last thing on my mind when I go to sleep, well, I see how it could happen. On Monday, I didn’t want to do any of my work, so I read the first three pages of Google results for creative burnout. Here are some of the common warning signs, according to the internet:

1. Not looking forward to working, when you normally do.

2. Being easily distracted.

3. Feeling tired.

4. Feeling like you only have stupid, bad ideas.

5. Putting off simple tasks that normally don’t take you very long to complete.

Yep, that sounds about right! I feel like this is something that isn’t talked about very often. In the creative world, you’re supposed to be, well, creative in all aspects of your life. I sometimes feel like I have so far to go before I can consider myself ‘successful’, and because of other blogs, I’m well aware of the success, (and the hard work) of designers I admire. It can be easy to slip into the trap of feeling guilty any time I’m not working, and it can be easy to forget that there is a lot going on behind the scenes of those other blogs, just like my blog doesn’t cover every aspect of my life. So it’s easy to downplay how much effort I put into all of this, because it makes me happy to do it, and I see all the areas where I could be working even harder.

That doesn’t mean it’s not important to take time to recharge. It makes sense if you’re constantly putting out work, you need some time to rest, and take it in. If you’re like me, sometimes these feelings sneak up on you. I can’t just peace out next week for the beach. Heck, I probably won’t be able to take off even next month. But what I can, (and did) do is take a single day, and be totally self indulgent. I read a book, took a long nap, watched tv, and barely left the couch. I painted my nails and looked at Pinterest, and hardly thought about work at all. At the end of the day, I had a bunch of ideas, and I felt much better about returning to work the next day. I made a list of things I want to accomplish, and got excited about accomplishing them.

And I started planning out the future trips I want to take, so the next time I need a break, I’ll already have one built in.