To avoid burn-out, get clear on what your Bliss Mission in life is. Stop working so hard, take some time to re-focus on what you are doing, and why. What do you want from life?
I didn’t post last week because I was in the middle of a deep thought process and it just didn’t seem right to force myself to “output” when I needed to get my own head straight.
Actually, I was teetering on the brink of burn-out after working my arse off for months. I think burn-out is something to be avoided at all costs, total waste of time, so I needed to go within and get the house in order, rest up and just wait until I was feelin’ groovy again.
How To Avoid Burn-Out: Re-focus On Your Bliss Star
In order to avoid burn-out I needed to stop going hard at it and take some time to re-focus on what I am doing, and why. What do I want from life?
People talk about following your North Star, but I like to follow my Bliss Star, that shining point in the distance that not only brings me bliss when I touch it, when I arrive there, but also makes me happy while I am traveling in the right direction towards it.
I am very lucky to have a best friend in the form of one Peter Owen, who was in the band with me all those years ago and is now in the new band Zuiiza. We are slowly birthing the debut release for the band, an album that has taken us years to write and record in stolen moments around working, kids, etc. (We don’t live in the same state so it’s always a challenge to get together and rock out. As a consequence the album has taken us about 7 years!)
We were discussing last week the power of where you place your focus based on what you are committed to. This conversation and resultant thought process helped me get through last week’s mini-burn-out without actually hitting the skids, and in the process, helped me to get back to basics, to what it is I am here to do and what I want from this life.
Inadvertently, I finally wrote down what is the closest I have ever come to writing one of those list of “values” which self-help books are forever recommending. I never really got very excited about doing that, always seemed a bit forced, but there you go, seem to have done one naturally now. Here ’tis…
What’s Your Bliss Mission?
The main thing in life is that you have to follow your bliss. I call this my Bliss Mission. (Try saying that six times really fast!)
For some people that’s building their business, for some it’s sky-diving or surfing, for others it’s simply chilling out with a good book. For me, however, Bliss is this: standing onstage playing music with my friends to giants crowds of appreciative music fans.
Silly, perhaps, for a man nearing forty, but there’s no denying it. That’s my bliss. That’s my mission. That’s why I am here. This is what I am committed to seeing happen again in my life, no matter how old I get and, hopefully, sustainably this time around. It might be a bit mad, but I don’t give a shit, I’ve tried to ignore this need and push it down but that doesn’t work, just leaves me miserable, so now I see it like so: I’ll get back to my bliss one day, or I’ll die trying. Thankfully, I quite enjoy trying, so either way it’s not a total win/lose proposition!
My Four Commitments
Grounding this flight of fancy, however, are four commitments. I might not always live up to them but they keep me on track and let me know when I am veering off course:
- Health – right diet, exercise, temperance, meditation, mental/spiritual/moral health
- People – honouring family and true friends, loyalty, respect, love, contribution to society, compassion
- Wealth – cash flow in the short term, and ultimate goal, financial independence
- Creative Career – using my broader creative skills to carve the best path, good for cash flow and lifestyle now, creative business and writing ability supports ultimate goal (music success)
After thinking all of this through again, it was clear to me that I have been neglecting my Bliss as I scramble around keeping my business going. That’s cool, sometimes we must work and live in a state of dynamic balance, swinging to temporary extremes before swinging back again. However, in order to stay on track, it’s time to act, so I have made some decisions.
- Ultimately, my business, which I am very passionate about, should regardless not jeopardise my Bliss Mission. Therefore…
- My marketing business is restricted to business hours only. If it doesn’t make enough cash flow within business hours, then get job (Aagh! Thankfully, business currently DOES make enough cash flow!)
- Before and after work/kid-wrangling hours must remain sacred to furthering pursuit of Bliss Mission (music success).
- Business must not draw my creative/hustle well dry.
- Everything I do must be worthwhile, if not, just drop it
- I must find things to stop doing. I think I take on too much and this is detrimental. So I am on the warpath, looking for projects to cull, even this blog is not safe!
OK there you have it, thought my kerazy thought processing might be useful to you! Meanwhile, back to my Bliss Mission – what about you, soldier – what’s yours?