Burnout while writing and creating content happens to the best of us. It doesn’t mean you don’t love what you do. It just means that you are overworked and not giving yourself enough time to relax. The key is recognizing the signs and avoiding burnout before it sets in.
No matter how passionate you are about what you do, working 18 to 24 hours a day is not healthy. Work-life balance looks different nowadays with many people working from home and that blurs the line between working and being engaged with your family, or just getting away from your work.
Studies show that your performance and productivity are actually improved when you take time away from your computer.
Schedule Mandatory Rest and Relaxation
Just like scheduled meetings on your Outlook or Google calendar, it’s important to schedule blocks of time for activities that make you feel relaxed and rejuvenated.
As a full-time content writer and editor, I know there are days that it’s a struggle to step away from the computer, but your self-care, personal relationships, and mental health are more important than your inbox.
If your mental health takes a dive, then it’s going to affect whatever you have on the calendar for work. Get your mental health and happiness squared away and that will translate to higher quality work and a happier life.
So block out some time in your calendar for workouts, a long walk, reading, freewriting, or even watching a movie. Whatever it takes to make you feel relaxed so that you can step back into your job with a clear mind.
Take Short Breaks Throughout The Day
Just like you schedule in your relaxation time, find small pockets of time during the day that you can take your mind off your work. Even if it’s only a few minutes, it’ll make a world of difference in your attitude, motivation, and productivity.
I’ve mentioned the 90/20 rule in other articles. To some that may not be possible with your work setup. If you have the ability to take a 20-minute break for every 90 minutes of work, outstanding! If not still try to schedule in a few 5 or 10-minute breaks throughout the workday.
I like to take my dog for a short walk around my property when I need to let my eyes and brain reset. Sometimes I’ll run a quick errand to the local store or just task switch to something else. You’ll be amazed at some of the ideas that’ll pop into your head while on a break.
Plan and Schedule a Vacation
Workaholics take note, vacations actually make you a better boss or employee. So if you’re one of those people who hasn’t taken a vacation in years, it’s time to book that vacation (or staycation) to avoid burnout.
Even the act of planning and scheduling a vacation has positive effects on you mentally. It gives you a sense of accomplishment, excitement, and something to look forward to.
Research shows that most people never take vacations. They worry about not being able to be there for their clients or fear the amount of backlogged work and emails they’ll have to deal with. LET IT GO.
If we’ve learned anything in the past year, it’s that slowing down is amazing for your mental health. You’re allowed to disconnect for a period of time and not worry about work. That’s why you have peers.
Find Inspiration By Working In a Different Environment
If your writing is suffering because you lack inspiration or creativity, then it’s time to look for those vibes elsewhere. Sometimes all it takes is a change of scenery or location. This can be as simple as working from a different room in the house or simply going outside on a patio or deck to work.
We have spent so much time in our homes over the past year, so learning to make small changes to your routine can have a huge impact on your work and overall happiness.
Try checking out a local coffee shop. I work from a local coffee shop quite a bit and generally can get twice as much work done there as I would have by staying home. The relaxing background music, the smell of fresh coffee being brewed, and genuine conversations that happen at coffee shops do wonders for my inspiration and creativity.
There are so many ways to get inspired. You just need to open your mind and maybe step outside of your normalcy to experience it.
Reach Out To a Peer For Help
This is probably the toughest one for me to do. Whether you delegate some tasks to a peer or seek out professional guidance, there is absolutely nothing wrong with asking for help.
I’ve experienced this within the last month or two, it’s as simple as admitting to a peer or family member that you’re overwhelmed to help shift your perspective and get you feeling more like you again! It really does work. Work smarter, not harder.