“I am this close to burnout,” I said to Paul as we were driving back home from his mother’s house last Monday. We were just 18 days into 2016–the mythical “Blue Monday”–but between parenting both our parents since Thanksgiving (one way or another) while observing the holidays with our kids and trying not to let our work go undone, I’ve been feeling a bit crisp around the edges. This week, I tried a few things that I hoped would slow the burn, and I think I managed some damage control.
Slowing the Burn: 5 things I tried this week
- The biggest change I made, and the one that felt the most truly productive, was getting to work at 6 AM two days this week. Winchester goes to dog daycare on Tuesdays and Thursdays, and dropping him off there gets me on the way to work late, which dumps me into the worst of the morning rush hour and gets me to the office in a cranky and irritable state. This week, I did a couple of hours of work from home on those mornings before we left the house, which let me miss most of the traffic jam and allowed me to arrive at the office feeling accomplished instead of already behind. If none of my coworkers complain, I think this is going to be my new Tuesday/Thursday schedule.
- I ate yogurt for lunch instead of breakfast two days this week.
- I was out of the office at a training on Wednesday. The training was held at a public library, which was located next to a pond. During our lunch break, I sat outside by the water and read a book.
- Before my editors and I agreed that I’d be taking a few months off from doing book reviews for Shelf Awareness, I received four promising February galleys, and I’m reading all of them deadline-free. I’ve already finished one, and I’ve spent more time this week with the second than I did with blogs or social media.
- And although my diminished, distracted energy level has me feeling more inclined to read books than write about them at the moment, I have signed up to participate in Book Blogger Appreciation Week next month, and am so happy that it’s making a comeback!
I guess I’m lucky not to be burnt out–or snowed in!–by winter weather, at least. How is January treating you?