Don't Let Burnout Stop You

Suffering is not a requirement of writing.

Too often writers associate passion with suffering. If you are not suffering for your writing - for your craft - are you really passionate enough about it? These questions often come up when burnout begins to hinder the writing process. Like an indicator light on a vehicle’s dashboard, burnout is warning us that something needs to change. Today, let’s focus on three tips that can help you avoid burnout in your writing.

The first tip is to lean into your habits.

Maybe you are coming out of a busy season and you’ve neglected your writing. You are feeling exhausted and burned out from your home life or maybe work has been especially hard - or both. Habits are a great way to hit the reset button.

Give yourself the grace to get back to your writing habit again. Sometimes returning to habits can feel tricky. We start hearing that voice in our head tell us we wouldn’t have to start over if we had stuck to it and other writers don’t face this issue. That voice, the one I like to call The Failure Monster, is 100% wrong. Stop listening to The Failure Monster. Habits save us from best intentions. They are a great way to get back to work.

Your writing habits offer a guardrail against burnout. Lean into your habits, embrace them, and keep coming back to them.

But what about work/life balance? That’s tip #2 for avoiding burnout.

Replace the idea of balance with choosing your priorities. This will lead to better rhythms instead of trying to balance everything - that’s impossible. If you choose your daughter’s soccer season and make it a priority, you are not off balance - you are making a choice. The same goes for your writing. Make it a choice. Prioritize it.

Choose priorities instead of chasing the myth of work/life balance.

This last tip is a big one, but it might feel counterintuitive. When you are feeling burned out and creatively drained, take a break. That’s right, lean into the burnout. Your body and mind, and perhaps this season of life, are telling you something. Listen!

Don’t let burnout stop you from reaching your writing and publishing goals. Lean into these tips for support. Remember: Stick to your habits, choose your priorities, and take a break.

Hope today’s post is like an aid station at mile 20 of a marathon. You’ve got this, even if burnout has slowed your progress. Keep going! We are with you on this journey.

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