My Thoughts

Contemplating Burnout.

The age of too much information. Managing my passion for my work and balancing body mind and soul.

A lot of times I find myself becoming so excited about a new idea or concept surrounding my business that I spend a lot of time-consuming information. I’ve come to learn that the act of being in a constant state of learning or ingesting can lead me to an eventual feeling of overwhelm. When I’m learning something new it activates my excitement. But I’ve learned that I’m not always able to maintain that level of energy.  A long time ago I developed the belief that burnout only came when I was consuming myself with activities and information that maybe weren’t for my highest good. I have recently realized that we can burn out just as quickly on the things we love as well. 

It sounds trivial and maybe obvious. I always hear about the scenario where a person is working a job that does not contribute to their highest potential, they experience burnout, and then go on to explore and learn about a more wholesome lifestyle and then they live happily ever after. These stories usually come from the Hallmark movies I like to watch in winter. I recognized lately that I fell under the spell of believing that if you followed your passion you were guaranteed to live a life full of balance and joy. 

Being a photographer, I tend to have seasons of extreme busyness and then seasons of calm. In those seasons of calm, I have come to utilize that time to reinvent myself. Update my systems and take new classes to stay current on the ever-changing technology. 

A pattern for me is to exit the busy season exhausted and without a shred of ability to concentrate. Every year I say I’m going to do it differently. The problem is I love my job so much that I never notice burnout coming. It just arrives out of the blue. I suppose I see a few of the signs here and there but again I have so much joy in my work that it’s easy to convince myself that I’m doing just fine!

There was a time when things moved a lot slower. Technology, social media, and the upset from Covid have made it so things are changing so rapidly. I used to be able to hold onto a camera body for five-plus years. Now with the advances, I’m upgrading almost every other year. Along with these advances comes a steep learning curve. Just when I feel like I am starting to master one thing, a whole new thing emerges. I have come to spend quite a bit of my off-season updating myself on all the changes. 

I also feel like I am transforming so much. Every year I feel like I have so much more to offer, so many new ideas and insights, and a more elevated experience for my client. This year I have taken a lot of time to focus on updating my website and the philosophy behind my work and finding the best way to convey that. This blog is one of those ideas   

I had an epiphany lately. We need to match the energy that we are expending with the same amount of input. And although my work feeds my soul, it’s not always considered input. I am a creative and an empath, able to read the energy of people and merge myself  (which is not always healthy) so that I can produce what my client most wants. That is an expenditure. More on that another time. 

Learning a new thing, and pouring myself into the execution of this new thing, even if it’s my passion, is also an expenditure. Even though I feel like I am absorbing something I am also utilizing a certain amount of energy to allow that information to integrate. I find the best practice when I am learning something new is to balance it with a physical action such as exercise, an art project, baking, etc. Performing some type of activity like this can bring life force back and rebalance and rejuvenate. 

I have learned that I can run out of creative spark if love is not present to gently remind myself to utilize both absorbing and expending. 

Feeling a great sense of inspiration must also be coupled with doing daily life.  I have the cycle of information coming in and then the information is being integrated and imprinted while I refocus on a mundane physical task. 

Take, for instance, two scenarios. The first, sitting at my desk all day editing photos. My body is stagnant but my creative mind is working nonstop. I get out and take the dogs for a long walk to balance that. In this sense, I get my body to move and take control and guide me down the road. Meanwhile, my mind and creativity can rest. Energy can be absorbed from the earth through my feet and the movement of my body circulates that energy and restores my creative field. 

The second would be if I am ingesting a large amount of information like a course or class. Again, I am always having to remind myself to balance that with something like raking the yard, throwing the ball for the dogs, having lunch with a friend, or even washing my windows. 

I love chocolate cake but if I were to eat it for breakfast lunch and dinner I would quickly become sick and unimpressed with its flavor. Our body needs a whole variety of nutrients. Some nutrients feed our physical body and some that feed our soul. 

With this shift in mindset, I have started to catch myself when I have been sitting with a project too long. I am trying to be deliberate about giving myself breaks and balancing with other meaningful activities. Even if it’s just for 10 minutes. I am working on spotting my cunning self when it pretends not to need a break. Just because it is my passion and I love every minute of it does not mean the body mind and soul don’t need replenishment. 

With all that being said, to truly find a passion than fills you up and inspires you in your everyday life is quite a blessing. Allow yourself the joy of that passion and give it the time and attention to develop in your life. We need those to feel a sense of grounding and love in our lives. 

+ show Comments

- Hide Comments

add a comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


Subscribe to my BLOG!

SEVEN DIAMOND photography

Capturing life in the rural world


© SEVENDIAMOND 2022. All rights reserved. | Legal | Design by TONIC