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Hello class, please have a seat. We have a really good lesson prepared for you special snowflakes today. We shall be talking about what all YouTubers refer to as, “burnout”. For anyone who hasn’t studied, burnout is the term used to describe when someone spends all their free-time focused on one specific task until that task causes that person to feel unmotivated and even hate the task.
For example, if you are a creator who keeps a tight schedule, but leaves no room for other activities. Not letting yourself do something less stressful to cool off from a hard day of giving 100%. Then you will find your motivation reserves plummeting. Suddenly your creative outlet is just work, and work is all you know. It’s like all the color is zapped away, there is no substance. Quite the scary scenario. Burnout is the mass murderer of your potential. The silent agent that is ready to destroy your motivation. And when you aren’t motivated, why even continue?
I follow many creators on YouTube, who upload regularly, like clockwork. And never take breaks or holidays. While their comments overflow with suggestions and requests that their audience wants them to fulfill. They feel obligated to continue. Until they find themselves drowning in a silent sea. The S.S. Motivation, taking on water and sinking to the dark depths. And let me tell you, it is a sad sight to see.
My favorite YouTuber of the RWBY community Arnold, also known as MurderofBirds, gave his own experience recently while watching the Rooster Teeth series Red vs Blue. While the Rooster Teeth fandom can be very warm and welcoming, at the same time they can become obsessed with getting new reactors speeding through series without putting a foot on the brake. They are so excited to discuss future moments of a series that they are impatient and don’t realize when their demands are like me when I am at a buffet. Yes person scooping my mash potatoes, make Mount Spud-icus higher. Eventually, we hit the bottom of the pan. The food worker sheds a tear in dismay. His hard work, now a beacon of poor decision making on my plate.
On a Patreon update post, Arnold had been running behind on his schedule. He had been having trouble making sure to upload on time. Fans were hounding him, wondering why the video wasn’t up yet. Arnold had this to say. “I’m tired, guys. I put dozens of HOURS into Red vs Blue on a weekly basis. You guys might get 2-3 hours videos per week, of my reaction and in-depth thoughts and breakdown of the batches, with notes provided, but there’s so much legwork involved and I’ve been stumbling to keep up.”
To summarize, when you feel like you are drowning you search for the escape route. And when what is drowning you is the videos you are making. What is the solution? You stop making them. And this has happened. Many YouTubers end up ending their youtube channels after getting burnout. Some are gaming channels, sick of playing the same game over and over, a game that once gave them joy. Now feels like a chore. A past time spent to connect and create, suddenly a burden.
Now you may be saying to yourself. “Okay, Professor Kai, this is interesting and all. But how does this affect me? My motivation to do what I want. I’m not a YouTuber.” And it’s a simple as this. When you start to see your creative outlet as a burden. That is a clear sign to take a break. Motivation is all well and good. But one should never forget that they need to take a break from time to time.
And if you do feel like your motivation is waning. Try to mix it up. Don’t feel like you are stuck to one form of creativity. Or one format. Sometimes the best way to get motivated would be to stop trying to please others and please yourself again. Do not be stuck on making sure you don’t disappoint those you entertain with your creations. It is yours when all is said and done. Give yourself regular breaks, as well as getting out and doing things with friends or family. Go see the world. You’d be surprised how it will give you the charge you needed. And remember, we have an exam next week and I expect you all to ace it! Seriously this will be on the final.
All joking aside, thanks again for trudging through the word trenches with me, next time I shall make sure to pack an extra shovel. Until next time! Stay safe, stay motivated, and stay true!