The Creative Burnout Problem and How To Get Rid of it?

Pawan Rochwani writes about his experience of creative burnout and 5 ways on how to get rid of it? You can also listen to this episode of our podcast ’When We Met’ on Spotify/ Google Podcast/ Apple Podcast/ Hubhopper/ Gaana or any other audio apps that you use.

Our brain is not a perpetual motion machine that we can churn out creativity from it 24/7 365 days, we need to take a break.

In this week’s episode of our podcast ’When We Met’ we talk about The Creative Burnout Problem and how to get rid of it.

As creators we are always working, Instagram is like our office and we are constantly checking in and checking out of our office. We are always thinking of what is the next product we will roll out, what is the next event we want to host or the next music we will release. We are constantly checking what is trending and if we can create content something around it. We are constantly checking if there are new features out or some change in algorithm. But when do we take a break from all this? How separable are our work and personal lives as creators? 

Here is what Felix Kjellberg had said at the end of 2019

"I'm taking a break from YouTube next year. I wanted to say it in advance because I made up my mind. I'm tired. I'm feeling very tired. I don't know if you can tell."

Felix kjellberg is popularly known as PewDiePie and has the second highest number of subscribers on YouTube with 104 million subscribers. Do you think Felix Kjellberg thought how many subscribers or followers he will lose before deciding to take a break?

Now before I start giving any gyaan about this topic, I want to tell you all about my Creative Burnout Problem and how horribly vulnerable I was just a few weeks back.

We were working on our annual book UNREAD 2020 since October 2019 and since that period we had planned a lot of campaigns, events and promotions for the book launch in February 2020. We did launch the book in Feb 2020 but all our events which were planned for March, April, May had to be cancelled. Now we spoke to multiple venues in almost 15 cities and we were coordinating with volunteers in all these cities, every second that we spent on planning this entire project was a waste now. I cannot regret or crib about it because this wasn’t anybody's fault, it’s like a natural calamity. Although some people do have conspiracy theories but just for the peace of my mind I want to be ignorant towards these conspiracies.

So during March 2020 when everything around the world was going digital and it seemed like there will be a jump in podcast listeners, I decided to let my mind take a call on this instead of the data which was floating on the internet. March 2020 period was probably the best time to grab new listeners for the podcast but I decided that I want to take a break from hosting our show before my mind and health gets exhausted completely.

It’s not that I did not enjoy podcasting, I love hosting our show and I cannot tell you how happy I am to be back with the season 2 opener.

But just because there is no result of my past 6 months efforts doesn’t mean I did not fight, it's just that somethings are out of my control. I did evaluate the pros and cons of taking a break from this podcast, and all those numbers seemed horrifying to me, will I be losing the audience and will there be a drop in the number of listens etc. But am I really doing this podcast for the number of followers and number of listeners? Or am I doing this to bring a positive impact in some people’s lives? I am not even saying a thousand people, can I assume that I am making our podcast just for you? Just for one person?

Now how did I break this follower dopamine?

Let’s say you have 1000 followers on Instagram. Now Imagine, you are hosting a party and you invite 1000 people, is that a lot of people or less? You already have 1000 people who are your friends or people who like your content on Instagram that is why they followed you. Why isn’t it enough? Why do we stress out on these numbers?

Here is a little geek stuff, when you get stressed, adrenaline is released and you have only limited amount of adrenaline in your system. That adrenaline is now replaced with cortisol, which is like a creativity speed breaker. When you are stressed, your body system sends adrenaline to the organs which are needed for survival and rest everywhere cortisol is sent. There are actual chemicals blocking your creativity when you are stressed.

Now, you try to beat that but all you are doing is producing more cortisol all together and you are blocking yourself from being creative.

This is what happens on the inside, now what happens on the outside. These are the three symptoms that I found in myself when I was experiencing creative burnout problem.

  1. I wasn't enjoying what I was doing, even though I love my work.

  2. I was self doubting my creative instincts. For me taking creative decisions was very easy, I was always clear on what I live and what I don't like but suddenly it felt like I am in a black and white movie and everything has turned grey now.

  3. I felt stuck in other parts of my life, I was constantly having trouble with my friends and family or sometimes with my own self.

Now how did I get rid of it? I think you will enjoy this episode from here onwards

If you are unable to play the episode from the above link, you can listen to the podcast When We Met on HubHopper or Spotify or Google Podcast or Apple Podcast or even on our YouTube channel. Please feel free to connect with me on Instagram or subscribe to the my weekly newsletter and I would be happy to help you in any way with your creative burnout problem.

Take care.

When We Met is a weekly podcast show produced by Platform For Artists where we talk about the topics are relevant to the Indian Art Culture. New episodes release every Friday on all audio platforms, if you liked this episode or have any recommendation for guests, feel free to DM us on Instagram

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