We have all experienced burnout, that fried-brain feeling. It can come from many different catalysts: Being overworked and under-slept. Depression. Self-doubt. Imposter syndrome. Even a run-of-the-mill series of bad days.
Evidence suggests that entrepreneurs are more at risk of burnout because they tend to be extremely passionate about their work, and often more socially isolated.
Though the symptoms and consequences of burnout can be dire, in our productivity-obsessed society, we should recognize how it impacts us personally. We are each unique and affected differently. This article will encourage you as a creative writer to maintain precision focus—give you the ability to sit still and work on the same task for longer periods of time without distraction—even when you’re experiencing burnout.
5 Ways to Boost Internal Motivation and Maintain Precision Focus
1: Say no to Multitasking.
Multitasking is the best way I know of to get ‘off task’ and takes an average of 23 minutes and 15 seconds to regain focus after interrupting your original task. Before you sit down to write, turn your phone off, pause your inbox and block your social media. Focus on the task at hand then perform to the best of your abilities.
2: Determine the reason you are writing.
If pursuing your goals benefits you personally – that’s a bonus. Even though intrinsic motivation isn’t as tangible or as easily measured as extrinsic motivation, it’s what keeps us going for the long haul.
Instead of saying, “I should write because I should write,” dig deep and journal about what it means to you to be a better writer.
Focus on the fact that writing is an art – meaningful entertainment. You are a writer; you write books.
3: Stick to a routine.
It takes practice, but it behooves you to have a routine. Go forth and conquer.
4: Find time to live.
Sometimes, life gets hectic. Maybe your schedule changes and you don’t have the leisure time you had hoped for.
If your routine has been thrown for a loop, take a break. Give yourself a moment to enjoy life. “The purpose of life is to live it, to taste experience to the utmost, to reach out eagerly and without fear for newer and richer experience.” Eleanor Roosevelt. Once you’ve taken your moment, refocus your energy, then reclaim your writing time.
5: Fake it until you make it.
Get your bum in your writing seat at the same time every day. Routine is key because it sets your brain on autopilot.
Understand that passion is a double-edged sword. It is what drives entrepreneurs’ motivations and work behaviors. They use those characteristics to prevent burnout from hurting their careers. Similarly, think more flexibly about your career to help you prevent burnout.