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Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Overcoming a Case of the Blahs: The Secret to Regaining the Fire in Your Belly

'Love the moment. Flowers grow out of dark moments. Therefore, each moment is vital. It affects the whole. Life is a succession of such moments and to live each, is to succeed.' 
Corita Kent

 If everything is so Good, Why Do I feel so Blah?

We've all been there. 

There's nothing wrong. But work is stressful and you've been working too many hours to finish a project. Oddly enough you might even be thinking of quitting.

You pride yourself on putting your all into your work and this focus on excellence has brought you praise and landed you great projects you can really sink your teeth into. Everyone loves your work and sings your praises-- "You're smart, responsive, creative and productive". 

So why are you now nursing a case of the blahs--feeling anti-social, wanting to take naps instead of going out, and turning inward when you finally take time off?

Burnout and the Blahs

When you feel you've lost that fire inside driving you to excel and enthusiastically jump into the next project--or you secretly fear you're in over your head and are soon to be discovered as incompetent--you've come down with a bad case of the Burnout Blahs.

Like so many others who desire to make their mark on the world you have given your all without sufficiently replenishing your energy along the way. When we fail to adequately engage in non-productive play to re-balance, our fire and drive can extinguish quickly. 

When your emotions flat-line into a case of the blahs you know it's time to re-balance.

'Burnout is nature's way of telling you, you've been going through the motions and your soul has departed; you're a zombie, a member of the walking dead, a sleepwalker. False optimism is like administrating stimulants to an exhausted nervous system.' 

Sam Keen, Fire in the Belly

The Secret to Regaining the Fire in Your Belly

You already know you want to excel and be the best you can be. So why is it so difficult for you to do what you already know you need to do to maintain that fire in your belly more often than not? 

So what's the secret to regaining the Fire in Your Belly?  Engaging in non-productive play in your private persona.

Times of drive must be balanced with times of idling, and you must give yourself equal time living as your private self as you do as your public persona. Staying 'on' 24/7 is crazy-making behavior that leads to burnout, self-doubts and the blahs.

The antidote is to practice doing nothing--regularly. You must consciously plan fun private time into your week or you'll find the subtle ever-pervasive infiltration of work into your mindset. 

'Find a place you trust and then try trusting it for a while.' Corita Kent

  • Stop.
  • Do nothing.
  • Unplug.
  • Give in to that nap.
  • Unplan.
  • Have a dream-free day.
  • Lose the expectations.
  • Accomplish nothing.
  • Putter.
  • Lolly-gag.
  • Tinker.
  • Find your FLOW

'Deep summer is when laziness finds respectability.'
Sam Keen

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For more than 30 years, Susan Meyerott has been helping people lighten up and step over invisible barriers to change one step at a time. She speaks to your heart, puts you at ease, and makes changing easier than ever before.

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Stephanie Brown said...

Really needed to hear this one. Thank you Susan!

Jean | said...

Sue, glad to see you use the phrase "times of idling." That's what my husband and I have been calling down-time for years. It does wonders for me. This post is full of great reminders.

Susan J Meyerott, M.S. said...

Stephanie--I always work on a post that has current meaning to me. It helps me see more clearly and get to the other side. I'm glad it can help you at the same time!

Susan J Meyerott, M.S. said...

Jean, some day I want to meet you and your husband. I am always reminded of Columbo talking about his wife when you talk about your husband. 'Times of idling' is such a comforting term!