October 29, 2022•492 words
It’s been hard for me to get into the full writing mood, so here’s a 3 for 1.
Humans are simple. All of them. Sure, the internal machinery is obscenely complex. But a given person has only one thought streaming through their mind at any given time. Sample the smartest, richest, poorest, happiest, saddest people in the world, and at any given time, they are only having one linear, simple, non-quantum thought, like “I’m hungry” or “I wonder if this person likes me.” This also helps me understand why the future or destination or the meeting of goals or acquisition of desires never makes me better off: because even in a nicer house or nicer car or nicer town, I’m still only having one thought at a time, regardless of my surroundings, like “I’m hungry” or “I wonder if this person likes me.”
Recovering from burnout is hard but possible in due time. I’ve recovered from the burnout I wrote about a month ago, and knowing how inconvenient it is to go through, my number one goal now is avoiding it in the future. So I’m taking a lot of breaks. And eating ice cream. And otherwise allowing my impulses room so I’m not clenching all the time. The exercise of restraint and will power consumes mental resources, so eating ice cream as a counter measure helps relax those muscles. I’m not sure if burnout can be prevented, but it’s worth delaying at the very least.
I recovered from my burnout about a week after I wrote last month’s post where I wondered how I would get myself out of burnout. The way I got out of it was somewhat anticlimactic. See, I had thought my burnout was complex and deep and needing psychoanalysis. But a couple nights after writing that post, I was feeling nostalgic and went through some of my posts from 2018. I was surprised to read that even then—before the storm of health adversity that rocked my world for several years between 2019 and now—even in 2018, I had struggled with bouts of coding burnout. I even wrote that it was laughable how repulsed I was by coding, which I also wrote in last month’s post. Funnily enough, I don’t remember any of that. I don’t remember being burnt out in 2018. I thought I was super productive then. Learning I had burnt out during better times made me feel better today, because it made the burnout today feel less personal and not so complex. And in that moment, I kid you not, I spontaneously healed. I was back to work the next day. If I had not kept a journal back then about my day to day, I’d probably have spent a lot of time today beating myself up about burnout and thinking it had something to do with my circumstances, rather than just being a thing that happens. This is why we write.