Thursday, May 21, 2015
Burning Out and Rebounding
It’s been nearly a month since my last post, perhaps longer. I am not keeping track. After I attempted to create a deadline for myself to stick to and failed to meet it, the level of inconsistent dedication to my project has been inexcusable. I’ve become something of an unfocused unfulfilling project manager.
I have begun this week again to try and establish a routine that pushes my progress inch by inch further down the path. But while re-starting my engine again, I had come to learn something about my creative side… I was a little burnt out. I shouldn’t make such an excuse, but let’s be honest here- I am on month 17 of my first book, and that is a really long time to work on something.
So I thought I would find some good food for thought to share while trying to shake the cobwebs out of my dusty mind:
Find a routine that is custom made for you: There is such a thing as a positive balance between your life, your job, and your hobby or passion. If you exercise regularly, use this as a simple template to create time for yourself. Do you always do the same workout? Are you always on the same exact circuit? Do you have hard days and light days? The same can be done with your project. Just set some time aside each day or every other day to just sit there with it. Something will happen, and some days better than others, but make it a part of a manageable routine.
Don’t be so hard on yourself: On those bad or slow days, or days where you just don’t get much accomplished… don’t lose sleep over it. Of course that’s easy for me to say, I have lost an hour here or there wondering if I did something right, or could have done something better. I’ve even gone to bed annoyed wondering if it is even worth the time. It’s useless. You have a goal, right? Beating yourself up over it gets you nowhere near that goal. Call a bad day a day and move on. Tomorrow is another opportunity.
Find a way to enjoy your work: In times past, specifically with my drawing… I gauge my ability to draw other things if I find myself helplessly laboring over an image in my mind. Sometimes I like to check out what @sketch_dailes is tweeting, or @dailydoodle, or a number of other great cartoonists. Sometimes I look at the paper or visit http://nickandzuzu.com/ for hilarious inspiration and I create something original for myself or for others, just to get a much needed laugh reaction. Sometimes I use my characters. Sometimes I draw other iconic characters. I find a way to have fun with my work, by having fun with my skills. It makes my work enjoyable because it eliminates the feeling of failure. Just take some time out to have fun. Whatever field you are in, find a way to explore a way to share. That sort of interaction is always fulfilling.