Burn Out

I’m sure you’ve been there before.  That feeling that you just don’t want to do that thing you’re supposed to do…that thing you have to do.  You sit down to the computer and stare at the blank Word document.  You know that paper won’t write itself, but your mind is blank, and your body is tired.  Your stamina wanes.  There’s a deadline looming, but hardly makes a dent in that feeling of apathy.

This is me at this moment.  4 1/2 weeks left until graduation, and I’m just…done.  Now, before you think I’m just seeking attention or fishing for encouragement, stop.  Just stop.  I write because God puts things on my heart – perhaps so that I can more fully process whats going on in my life, or maybe (and this is my hope) so that someone else may benefit from my experiences.  Anyways.

This evening, I sat down to work on my TPA – that big, crazy paper I have to write to graduate.  You know.  Thankfully, there are prompts, so I’m not just pulling stuff out of thin air.  But the prompts are wordy and complicated.  And my brain feels tired and foggy.  And I just don’t even want to try to clear the fog.  My motivation is tanked (well, at least for tonight).  Yet, I have no choice.  I have to write this paper.  I have to go to school tomorrow and teach the kiddos.  So what do I do with this?  How do I manage it?

First, I change my perspective.  Instead of saying that “I have to go to school tomorrow,” I need to think more like “I get to go to school tomorrow”.  I’ll admit, though…it’s hard to think of the TPA as a privilege.

But more important than changing my perspective, I’ll go to God – to His word.

So maybe this discipline isn’t “painful”, but the point remains.  When we experience things that are challenging or painful or ___________,it’s not pleasant.  But YES, we will grow through the experience if we allow ourselves to do so.

And the second promise I’m clinging to right now:

No, I’m not “suffering”, but I do believe that my challenges in student teaching will bring about good and growth in me.

So I’m probably done working on my TPA for tonight.  But there is tomorrow.  And the day after, and so on.  I’ll reach down deep inside and find some motivation – or make some.  And it’s gonna be okay 🙂

I hope you’ve found some encouragement in these words.

And if you’re like me, dealing with burnout, how do you motivate yourself?





Sometimes, all I can do is sit back and marvel at how things in my life literally come full circle.  Over the summer, I had the possible eating disorder clinic job come up, which would incorporate teaching and and music therapy…what I’ve wanted to do for a long time.  Full circle.  Today, it’s the burger issue.  My very first blog post ever, (which is actually on a different blog) was about a burger, and in a way, this blog post is about a burger too.  Or at least, it all started with a burger.

My sweet roomie and I went out for a fun, Red Robin dinner last night.  We split a burger and a wrap, and man-oh-man, it was tasty!  Well, at least the half-burger, fries and salad were.  I was too full for the wrap.  But with that sense of fullness came a sense of guilt.  And the sense of guilt created what felt like an all-out tailspin of anxiety, fear, nervousness, and a desire to restrict my eating and/or exercise a lot.  Sigh.

As you might imagine, I greatly looked forward to going to church today – looked forward to the uplifting, the encouragement, the deeper knowing of God.  But sometimes I forget about one factor.  That factor is Satan…and I specifically forget that he can have an affect, even in church.

The sermon dealt with Sin (big S) being the root, and sins (little s, plural) being the external evidence of the root, Sin.  It led me to wonder what or where the root of this Eating Disorder is.  I began to wonder how I could get at the root, rather than just trim the branches that everyone can see.

Home.  Lunch.  Difficult.  Cranky.  Tears spilling over, even just in a text conversation.

I talked to my mom and dad.  I told them that I was trying to figure out the root sin of my eating disorder – was it vanity?  Perfectionism?  I didn’t know.  And I felt so anxious, nervous, afraid etc.

And like parents always do, they had a weapon to use against this enemy, Satan.  They reminded me that eating disorders are medical conditions, not based in sin.  And if there IS sin at the root of it, guess what?  It’s forgiven.

“as far as the east is from the west, so far he removes our transgressions from us.”

Psalm 103:12

I talked to Ron next.  And you know what he did?  He prayed for me.  Of course, he talked to me – encouraged me and such, but he did battle by praying.

I keep coming back to John 10:10

“The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy.  I Came that they may have life, and have it abundantly.”

Burgers are meant for enjoyment, not to blind the eater with guilt.  Food is meant for nourishment and life, not as a tool of torture anguish.  And life.  Life was not meant to be lived in fear of food, or fear of anything, really.  Life was not meant to be lived void and empty, but full of joy and peace.

Friends, we all have Sin and sins.  But while we were sinners, Jesus died for us so that we could be forgiven – and have a full and abundant life.

What is keeping you from that?