When you’re excited to start a new project you’ve been planning, it’s easy to ignore the red flags that are right in front of you. Your creative tank is at its fullest at this time, which acts as a blinding mechanism.
Three to six months down the line, the creative juices start to run out. When you stick to a strict schedule of producing content, it can have an effect on you physically and mentally.
Breaks are a crucial part of the design process. They can recharge you and allow you to come up with new strategies, topics, ideas or just rest. We all need rest; even from the things we love doing.
Falling into a mindless routine without ever questioning it can happen. But being able to take control and prevent yourself from quitting cold turkey is important to you, your future self and your passion.
Marathon, Not a Sprint
If you’re feeling the burn early on in your passion, don’t ignore the inevitable. You’re going to burn yourself out while killing your drive to continue pursuing your goal. Even if you start feeling it a few weeks in, take some time off to rest and adjust.
I started feeling this way about six months into weekly blogging. The burnout was gradually creeping up on me and rather than pushing through it, I acknowledged it and decided it was the right time to take a break.
My goal is to be able to write every week for as long as I can. If people keep emailing me about their struggles, I will continue to help them. That’s why I made the decision to take every seventh week off to recharge and protect what I enjoy doing before causing any further damage.
Quality Over Quantity
Rest plays a huge part in the quality of your work, whether it’s writing, lettering, calligraphy, drawing, painting or whatever it is that you love doing. Your output will eventually suffer if you’re not putting in the time to reset. It’s okay to press the reset button every now and then. We’re all human.
Don’t let the numbers or the fact that you’re “falling behind” affect your work. Taking a break will give you the freedom to come back with fresh content to share with your audience and in turn, help them continue to learn from you.
We all need rest; even from the things we love doing.
Pursue Other Passions
A break will also allow you to pursue other passions you’ve put on pause.
As much as I enjoy writing and helping others, I also miss being able to work on lettering projects from start to finish. It’s been on my mind for the past several weeks and it’s only going to get worse. Talking through it with friends, family or mentors, will help you realize what you’re missing if you’re unsure.
As if it isn’t obvious enough, breaks are also healthy for the longevity of your work. If you want to continue fulfilling your passion, don’t wait to start implementing breaks into your process or routine.
We’re in it for the long haul. Take a step back and avoid the burnout before it hits you.