It’s a fact of life, whether you’re an author, a reader, or just about anyone else in the world. We all have times where everything just hits us at once and we feel overwhelmed and at a loss as to how to manage our time, energy, and general work/life balance. That’s why for National Wellness Month, I’ve decided to address this topic here on the blog and try to help folks out with a few tips and suggestions I’ve come up with.
I’m not going to say that it’s easy to get past the burnout hump when it happens, because it all too often isn’t, but hopefully a few of these tips will help some of you out. I’ve done my best to avoid “toxic positivity” – because we all know that simply trying to think good thoughts doesn’t always work. Instead, I’ve stuck to things that have worked for myself and others in the past. Feel free to leave your own in the comments below, or leave us comments on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter with more suggestions.
Find a hobby. This one may sound a little tricky, because sometimes it’s our hobbies that have led to the burnout. I’m personally familiar with this one, where supplies that I’ve collected start to add up (in space and in dollars), and I just can’t find the time or motivation to work on a current project or start something new. So what this one is really about is keeping things simple. Take a little time and think about what you like; are you a music lover? Browse playlists on Spotify to find a new favorite artist. Are you an art lover? Download a few coloring pages and go to town with crayons or colored pencils. There are fun, simple things to do out there and a little time and thought can help you discover a new love…just be patient and take your time.
Eat and sleep. I’m combining the two of these, because they are both about taking care of the body, which in turn takes care of the mind. Now I don’t mean that you have to sit down and count calories or try to plan your next week’s worth of meals; nor do you have to rearrange your schedule to try and get 7-8 hours of sleep. Nope, what I’m talking about here is to eat your comfort foods and take a nap. That’s it. A bowl of macaroni and cheese and an hour on the couch can do a world of wonders, and leave you feeling energized in more ways than one.
Stretch. Yes, often people will suggest exercise, but speaking as someone who has experience in this, it can be daunting to try and figure out where to go for a walk, or what gym or class might be best for you. But a simple stretch – and maybe a yoga pose or two are really all you need to get your breathing steady and your heart pumping, and they can help turn around your entire day.
Rest your eyes. Put down the phone, close the laptop, and just look away for a little bit. Do you have a dream of somewhere you’d like to go someday, or pictures from a past favorite vacation? Take a few minutes to study the images and then close your eyes to imagine yourself there, free and happy. Even five minutes a few times a day can help.
Text a friend. Send a funny meme or a gif, using your phone or a private message, something that might brighten their day – and yours. Even if they don’t respond right away, supporting someone else can help you feel better, and you’ll feel supported in return if they send something back.
Get a change of scenery. Whether that means you leave the room, the house, or even the city – stop looking at the same thing every minute and use this time to steady yourself and take a breath.
Re-evaluate your Habits. I’ve left this one for last, because it can be the most challenging of the tips I’ve suggested so far, and the scariest. If there is something in your life that’s causing you to feel unhappy, the best thing to do is to approach it from another angle and see if there’s a change that can be made to help improve things. Sometimes that means you may have to cut off a toxic relationship, or sometimes that means you may have to change the order of what you do in a day. Whatever it is, take a few minutes to really think about it and see what you can do.
Now, obviously, doing these things won’t all automatically improve your mood or cure your writer’s block, but hopefully you’ll find something here you can use, and you can work to improve your wellbeing. If you’re looking for a dash of escapism, we’re currently running a 20% off sale on our Sci-Chai selections found here all month long.
And don’t forget to give yourself a hug from time to time.