Was I heading toward burnout? I was carrying a vast opportunity, producing a musical in London for a significant Theater and starring in it. I was spinning all the plates. I was ambitious and wanted to create my own career opportunities. This meant working a side hustle (as many performers do) while heading up the show marketing, creative meetings, casting, rehearsal spaces, and many other responsibilities. How long can a person operate at this level of productivity?
Financial pressure was brewing; the production was expensive and risky. Putting on a full-sized production with a director, musical director, cast, creative team, and orchestra was no small feat. I felt alive and driven, working day and night, as did my husband.
Life was like a pressure cooker; I was soaking in and heating up.
I declared to a friend that I’d finally be ready to start a family after this production! I have fulfilled a dream for my life (the London show), and I can finally settle down! However, after a dream goal passes, driven humans usually set another dream goal with an even higher achievement bar, and on it goes—the worthiness hustle. After the production season and performances passed, I was elated, then exhausted.
We often head towards burnout when we hustle too hard and long for worthiness.
So, what is burnout? Most of us don’t know. Burnout is a state of emotional, physical, and mental exhaustion caused by too much stress over a long period. It usually occurs when you feel overwhelmed, emotionally drained, and struggling to meet life’s constant demands. What is the best thing to do? Practice genuine self-care, not the mani-pedi kind (that’s nice, though) but rather the more profound work of knowing your boundaries, speaking up for yourself, pinpointing and addressing your negative self-talk, and identifying your values and operating out of them (use my free values workbook download here ). This work takes time, but get started with the below to get the ball rolling…
Stop – Set a plan for what must get done and what can wait.
Rest – Try getting support from a friend and exploring relaxing activities such as meditation, nature walking, movement, and the right amount of sleep.
Recharge – Don’t start a new project in this place; wait. Journal and process all the emotions. Try not to numb the pain and exhaustion with bad habits that make you feel worse.
How long should you rest and recharge?
Your brilliant and fantastic body will tell you when you have rested enough. I know when it is for me. I started to dream of new creative ideas again. What often happens after rest from feeling burnt out from intense life pressures and spinning too many plates is reflection, or at least it should.
I started reflecting on how I was operating my life. Did I work out of knowing my value or hustling for worthiness and spilling my worth as a result?
Truthfully, I realize I have given away so much for free as a career artist. Many artists do. However, the knowledge I carry within me now, after 20 years of navigating a career as a performer worldwide, has cost me massive amounts of money, time, and hard lessons.
I had gained a lot of fear about stepping out and saying, ‘Hey, I have a voice, and it matters.’ Many artists fear speaking out when things are not okay. However, your voice and talents are a costly fragrance you can offer our world. Slow down on the hustle for worthiness for a season, and reflect on what you carry.
Everything we learn in life is precious and costly. We carry value, my friends.
You’ve paid the price to know what you know; therefore, nurture yourself.
We all must step into the fullness of who we are and not hide. This journey, for me, was the start of my life rebirthing with fresh vision and purpose.
Allow your mind to open to new possibilities! We can pursue our primary career or even our main dream for years, and at times that focus can overshadow the MANY other gifts we carry that can be offered into this world through other outlets that bring us a lot of joy!
So allow your burnout to turn into rest and reflection. That reflection can lead to a more profound sense of your purpose in life.
Your burnout can cause life changes that bring you more joy!
With you on the journey, friend.
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