Friday, November 5, 2010

Signs of Burnout

Smelling smoke around here on the blog? Yes, I thought so.

It's 'cuz I'm burning .........out.

The type of burnout I have experienced, over these past few months particularly, is not job burnout or stress. It's nothing in particular and yet everything at the same time.

For MONTHS, I have smelled the smoke -- I have felt these symptoms. They get worse overtime.

Besides weekends, I have been going to work every day since I started in July, with the exception of Labor Day, which I spent entirely on school-related things. And the last time I took a day "off" was in early July. Compounded with these four years I've been working full time and being a full-time student, training for marathons, and trying to keep a social life (and keeping that in check with being a grown adult still living at home), I have really lost motivation toward everything. Haven't been away from work for more than three days in this time period. I don't get paid vacations or sick time. I'm attending a school which requires a good income. Did I already mention the "dread"?

So if you're experiencing any of these symptoms, then I guess we're in the same boat:

1) You dread waking up in the morning. (Or wake up feeling like you've been steamrolled every morning.)

2) You dread going to bed at night, knowing that it will result in #1.

3) You get easily annoyed at doing basic components of your job. (a.k.a., You like your job but want to tell everyone to buzz off.)

4) Weekends seem to disappear in the blink of an eye.

5) The thought of another training run makes you tired.

6) You have lunch at your desk in hopes that this will make the day go by quicker.

7) You get extremely jealous and lose your feelings of self-worth and deservedness (if that's a word) when you hear about other people's travels.

8) You can't imagine a break from work; it's like a very wild, wild, remote fantasy.

9) You suddenly start watching more TV in spite of not being a "TV person."

10) You have to fight the urge to overeat, an urge that comes from wanting to have SOME fun.

11) When you're headed to someplace you don't want to be (e.g., a training run, or work), you drive slowly unintentionally.

12) You feel trapped. And at times, hopeless toward the future ("It'll always be like this.").

13) No matter how fun it is to finish a race, your beloved hobby, running, does not appeal to you anymore.

14) The thing you want to do most is stay in bed alllllll day.

15) You start leaving things behind... like your Garmin, shoes, or cell phone.

16) Traffic annoys you more than usual.

17) When you DO have a spare moment, you don't know what to do but vegetate and procrastinate. Doing some basic tasks is like pulling teeth. See #14.

18) When others ask you how you're doing, you are as vague as possible.

19) You start having delusions about making a living from home to do more of #14. Things I've considered at least with some thought: selling cheap, table-cloth-made costumes and prostitution (yes, I know, the absurdity).

20) You surf the web incessantly to escape from this reality.

21) Even yoga is not relaxing. The only relaxing thing is #14.

22) Appearance? Ehhhh, who cares?

23) You tear up thinking about how burnt out you are and how you did this to yourself.

24) You start to crave travel, even if you've never been into it much, when perhaps all you really need is an extended break and freedom from everything for a while.

25) You feel guilty because you're too absorbed in dread and probably seem selfish.

So there, blog world, I have confessed. Please forgive the negativity in this post. I figured I'd save "The Ukrainian" from hearing about all this for the 237947239th time. I know the solution isn't going to be my 3-day work absence as a result of San Antonio Marathon. I don't even know if a huge break I'm getting for the holidays will help (part of that hopeless feeling).

I can only keep working toward these events.

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