There are some days where you sit down in front of your computer with a fresh cup of coffee or tea and just stare blankly at the screen, there is too much to get done and really no way you can physically and mentally do it. You need to take this as a sign that you need a break and you’re on the verge or burning yourself out.
I’ve been working a full time job as well as doing freelance work on the side for the last three years. Why? Well, mostly because I love what I do. I enjoy learning from each project and meeting new folks. When I look back over the past year, in addition to my full time job; I’ve done graphics for five music videos, been working on three different blogs, have a weekly craft beer podcast, done a handful or explainer videos for different startups and helped to create the Chicago Motion Artists Users Group. No matter how much I enjoy what I do I’m always worried about burning myself out. And with a heavy workload, demanding clients and no free time, it is easy to become overwhelmed and completely burnt out. The problem with me is I’m a workaholic and have an inability to stop at times, which has worked both to my advantage and disadvantage. I know many other freelancers and entrepreneurs who are hustling just as much and are dealing with the same thing. Still pushing yourself isn’t a bad thing but it could come with a price. How do you avoid the burnout with the constant go, go, go? Everyone you ask has their own tips, but it really just comes down to taking a break from the computer; if it’s for five minutes, two hours, or a week. It doesn’t have to be a safari trek across Africa either. It’s all about finding what works for you. I love checking out new restaurants to eat at, so having lunch with a friend, or dinner with my lovely fiancé works wonders. Or I’ll find myself just hanging out with friends, chatting over a fine craft beer. Sure it may not be anything exciting but it’s enough of a break to take my mind off work in order to refocus. When your body and mind starts to suffer then the effects can be seen on your work. Making time for yourself not only can improve your general health but it may even help you to get through that creative block you’ve been having and spark a great idea.