All the Naps in the World Won’t Save Us

This is a hard post for me to write. It’s personal, and it’s not easy for me to admit when I’m overwhelmed. But I wouldn’t be who I am if I wasn’t honest with you.

Confession time: I am burned out on life. It’s not just one thing, like work, but rather, everything. I’m the kind of person who likes to do ALL THE THINGS. And I think it’s finally catching up with me.

For example, I:

  • Taught a social media class at a local writers conference in January.
  • Was a guest author and panelist/moderator at Mysticon in February.
  • Published the third DC book in March.
  • Co-chaired the first Roanoke Author Invasion in April.
  • Got serious about my side business (social media consulting) in May.
  • Did UtopYA in June as PR Coordinator, speaker, and signing author.
  • Finished the fourth DC book in July.
  • And am now wrapping up a YA superhero book (first in a trilogy) probably before the end of this month.

All on top of a full time job and the occasional but necessary Friday night happy hours. And now it’s AUGUST?! Holy balls!

I love what I do, really! But I think we all hit a big, fat brick wall at some point. I like to think I can tough it out, but we all know how that ends: emotional eating (ie late-night milkshake trips), lying wide awake in bed staring at the ceiling going over our to do lists, and/or panic attacks.

It’s gotten to the point where all I want to do is hide under my covers or zone out on my couch. Instead, I know even if I tried to do those things, I can’t get my brain to stop churning out ideas. Problem is, they’re not all GOOD ideas because I haven’t had time to recharge the batteries. I might be doing 100 things FINE, but I’d rather be doing 10 things WELL. Does that make sense?

I’m usually the first person to tell others that it’s okay to take breaks. That it’s a good thing, recommended even, to step back from your work every once in a while to give yourself some space.

I, however, am sometimes a hypocrite when it comes to work. Admittedly, I’ve spent several hours going back through seasons of Supernatural, but it’s always playing in the background while I work. Or I’ll sit and watch TV with my husband, only to be constantly working through a scene in my head. It’s impossible to shut off!

I’ve had a few suggestions on how to recharge my batteries, but unfortunately a weeklong trip to the Bahamas isn’t in the cards right now (hell, a trip to the lake is barely in the budget). I avoid crowds at almost any cost. I’ve considered a three-day weekend where I unplug from the computer and sit on my couch with the dog. But nothing seems to appeal to me and/or sound right. I’m at a loss, quite frankly, and so I thought I’d see if you had any bright ideas.

How do you shut your brain off? Or rather, what are some things you do when you just need to check out for a couple days and avoid the guilt that comes with it?

9 thoughts on “All the Naps in the World Won’t Save Us

  1. Suzy Turner says:

    Oh Liz, you’re going to completely collapse soon if you keep going on like that. What you need is…. yoga. Can you find a yoga retreat somewhere not too far away, just for a weekend or so? Even if you’ve never done it before, you’ll find it’s exactly the kind of thing you need. It will help you shut your mind off from all this. You’ll feel so much better for it, I’m sure of it. Have a look and see if there is anywhere inexpensive nearby. It’ll do you the world of good.
    Sending huge hugs to you, my friend ❤

    • LizLong says:

      I love you Suzy 🙂 I do like the idea of yoga, assuming my mind actually listens and stays quiet! That’s a great idea that I might be able to work in somehow. Thank you so much! xoxo

  2. Charlott Low says:

    Tai Chi always worked for me. The physical movement distracts the mind. Another physical ‘process’ is called katsugen. Here is how it was described to me: talk to your body as if it were a person in front of you, tell it what you want. You could say something like, “Show me something I can do to feel energized and rejuvenated.” Then, wait. Actively listen to your body as if you expected it to speak to you in the language of movement. Then, wait and allow anything to happen. For myself, it was very very difficult at first, but then I would notice a tiny movement, a tilt of my head and, strangely enough, whatever it was I had asked to be given, or shown, felt as if it had been given. Message received.

  3. Theresa says:

    I am another yoga proponent. Only thing that works for me! I would suggest a “yoga nidra”. It is a guided meditation that helps quiet the mind. I can get you info on ordering one or you could borrow one of mine!

  4. Theresa says:

    Hey Liz, Just tried this yoga nidra. I don’t recommend it at all. This person is obviously not a certified yoga nidra instructor. I’ll hook you up with a proper one!!

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