Hi all! I know what you’re thinking – ‘Where were you last week? The blog is supposed to be every Sunday!” To which I completely agree, but hear me out for a second-
I want you to imagine two horses. They’re both pretty much the same. Let’s make them Bojack for fun. Bojack and Bobo (if you watch the show, you know). These two horse-men-people are the same physically and all around the same person. Now, imagine Bojack works hard every day doing whatever it is he does, and at the end of the day when he’s super tired and worked to his point, he goes to bed to fully rest for the next day of work. Bobo, on the other hand, has a similar exhausting day, gets home and does not stop. Ever. He doesn’t go to sleep, he does take a moment. He just continues to work. He keeps going and going until eventually he can’t keep up with himself anymore. This is called burnout. No, not the 10/10 racing game that came out for Gamecube in 1998. Burnout is something that a lot of artists have experienced , including myself recently, which is what I wanted to write this post about:
Giving yourself a break.
Now, if you’re like me (which I hope you’re not?), you don’t know how to sit still. You finish your work for the day - its 5 PM and you’re already making a list for the following 8 hours on what to get done next. No? Just me? With so many projects on the go, my mind moves faster than my body is able to at times. I’ve been experiencing one of those times, so I decided last week that I would take a week off of work, my job and everything else that’s been on my to do list. I took the week to recharge because let me tell you, the burnout was real. A part of me still feels it, in a small way, but I do believe taking the break was very much needed first step for me to get myself in the right headspace to move forward with a lot of major things I’d like to get done for myself and my business. I’ve written about time management on my blog before but it is also very notable to know when to be able to take that managed time for yourself.
Now back to my Bojack/Bobo analogy. Imagine now that they were artists instead. One of the artists is like myself: never slows down, stays up late to finish projects etc. etc. While the other artist, who is going to be me as well (the me I want to be, also I'm a Gemini) gives herself enough time to finish projects, gets good sleep and takes care of herself. Let’s see what we can do to make sure we can keep this energy of the other artist:
Don’t overload yourself.
I am infamous for this. Taking on more than you can handle is like having eyes bigger than your stomach. You think you can get that whole burger down after all those wings but that’s what appetizers are for. To distract you from what you really came for – the main entrée. Don’t put so much on your plate that you lose sight of the bigger picture. Take those appetizers to go and eat them later.
Know when to take a break.
This is a more spiritual point than anything else. A lot of people will wait until something drastic happens to them to explode or react to something that triggers how they’re really feeling, unrelated to the trigger at hand. These are normal human reactions, however observing these feelings and thoughts as they come so as to know what to do before they come to a head again is a key tool in knowing when you’ve had enough. Learn your patterns and yourself to know how to listen to your mind, body and spirit and what they can handle before they can’t. You do not need to get to your breaking point to take a break.
Remember to breathe.
With this pandemic, there are so many different emotions and energies around it. It’s easy to get caught up in that and let small things make you react like they’re bigger than they are. It’s difficult to be living through lockdowns and restrictions and its okay to be overwhelmed by those emotions and energies. This ties in to the stresses of everyday life, as an artist but more importantly as a human being. Know that its okay to feel like a lot is going on, because there is. When you feel like you’re drowning, remember that it is important to breathe.
If you’re going through something similar, I hope this post helps you feel less alone in that feeling and more comfortable with the fact that its totally okay to take a break. This is something I have to tell myself constantly, and I hope it helps me telling you.
Thanks for reading + stay ORANGEinal!