Well, it’s the last day of this lovely celebration, and today we discuss the dreaded burnout: One of the unfortunate side effects of reading and blogging like rockstars seems to be a tendency toward burnout. How do you keep things fresh on your blog and in your reading?
I’ll be the first to admit it – I didn’t handle burnout very well when it hit me. When I started blogging eight years ago, my reading posting pace increased exponentially. By 2010, I was reading and reviewing over 200 books per year. A few months into 2011, I slammed into a wall. What followed was a messy and chaotic untying of threads, jostling through non-book topics and shuffling through blog after blog after blog. Only after I disconnected completely for nearly a year was I able to find balance.
I never want to experience that kind of burnout again. For me, avoiding it involves a couple things.
On the book side, I read what I want, when I want. Sometimes, that’s ten books in two weeks. Sometimes, I don’t read a word for a whole month. Sometimes I read the same book six times in a row. If I can read however my brain desires, the reading tends to stay fresh, which helps me to feel fresh, and the blogging to feel fresh.
On the blog side, the most important thing for me was to quit caring about stats. When I worried about page views and comments, I felt compelled to come up with content and write more often, thereby pushing myself to read more and stick to detailed schedules. However, when I disconnected completely and posted my reviews in a completely private location with no stats to see, I was much happier. Now, I can post generally on a schedule, but not so rigidly that I feel trapped by it, and I’m not compelled to read or post at any particular pace.
This balance has helped both books and blogging to stay fresh for me, and honestly, I think that counts most when it comes to avoiding burnout!