loading words...

Jun 14, 2019 22:36:23

Is your streak burning you out?

by @jasonleow | 390 words | 344πŸ”₯ | 382πŸ’Œ

Jason Leow

Current day streak: 344πŸ”₯
Total posts: 382πŸ’Œ
Total words: 184818 (739 pages πŸ“„)

My short discussion with @knight made me wonder if anyone here in the 200wad community is feeling burned out due to having to write everyday to keep the streak. Are you?


We were talking about Makerlog, a task log that helps makers stay productive and ship faster. It uses the streak mechanism as well to motivate people, but it also has rest days built in - you get 1 rest day for every 10 streak days. Makerlog's rest days were a response to maker burnout in the makerlog community which over time, became quite rampant. People also started to abuse the system, posting #life tasks (that's not maker/shipping-related) just to keep the streak. I loved that the founder took a stand and decided to prioritise wellbeing and balance over the endless pursuit of the streak. I just wonder if the situation is similar here at 200wad? Does a majority of 200wad feel burnt out and out of whack by having to write everyday?


This question is also kind of relevant to what I was talking about recently, regarding writing gibberish as a way to keep showing up, as part of a writing/creative journey, part of writing for emergence, part of self-growth and learning. Even though writing daily is great for that, I do feel that there is one situation when you shouldn't keep writing, even gibberish. 


When you feel burned out. 


When pushing yourself to keep a streak means losing wellbeing and work-life balance to the point of physical or emotional exhaustion, or even dysfunction and maladaptation in daily living, then no streak, no matter how glorious and hard won, is worth it. It's uncanny that the emoji for the streak is the flameπŸ”₯, the exact same emoji we would associate with for burnout, isn't it?!


My own experience: I'd burned out from work before, so I know how that feels like. But writing daily here doesn't quite feel like that. Maybe initially I did feel kind of 'browned out', especially during my slump. But now, the habit had gotten quite ingrained, the effort less straining, and writing here is becoming quite comfortable and enjoyable. But that's for now. Who knows what will happen in the future?


One thing's for sure: if I ever feel burned out from writing daily, I'll be the first to scoot. Wellbeing over writing, for sure.  


Replies

Comments

  • 1

    @jasonleow As I'm not a native english speaking, I wish someone could explain me the meaning of the word Streak. In the dictionary the best definition I see for this kind of streak is "move very fast in a specified direction." Is that it? You streak a text, you build it up in a fast fashion just to get going? Is that what you mean ?

    John Castrus Miles avatar John Castrus Miles | Sep 20, 2019 13:36:55
    • 1

      @jootomscastroemelo in this context, streak = consecutive days which you wrote on 200wad

      Jason Leow avatar Jason Leow | Sep 20, 2019 21:22:48
    • 1

      @jasonleow So, if you a fail a day, you fail the streak. Is that it?

      John Castrus Miles avatar John Castrus Miles | Sep 20, 2019 16:10:23
    • 1

      @jootomscastroemelo yes

      Jason Leow avatar Jason Leow | Sep 21, 2019 22:29:54
  • 1

    @jasonleow I’m not burnt out. It’s fine. I try to right about something useful, but if I have nothing to say, I just wrote about my day. It’s no big deal on this platform, but I find it therapeutic to write.

    My issues come from not planning and not being happy with a subject or topic. Not the writing or streak itself.

    Craig Petterson avatar Craig Petterson | Sep 20, 2019 11:27:13
    • 1

      @craigpetterson good to hear πŸ‘ I no longer plan for topics either. I find keeping up a regular but not time-consuming, high quality media diet of books, podcasts and articles keeps the inspiration for daily topics going...

      Jason Leow avatar Jason Leow | Sep 20, 2019 21:22:14
  • 1

    @jasonleow @basilesamel
    "Take a break :P It's no big deal, just whatever works for you."
    I am totally freaking out when I think about that! I am seriously afraid that if I break my steak once there will be no more streaks.. ever... that I will just drop out
    Hence I accept (with effort and pain) all the crap I write or actually writenot, just to stay here.
    It so does feel like burn out, yet I wholeheartedly believe that it is a phase, even if it has lasted for months now.
    And I still am curious what this "veeery low phase" might bring...

    Lucjah avatar Lucjah | Sep 20, 2019 09:32:56
    • 1

      @lucjah why do you write? How is this writing here on 200wad serving you?

      Jason Leow avatar Jason Leow | Sep 20, 2019 21:19:22
  • 1

    @jasonleow Couple thoughts. I am absolutely not even CLOSE to being burned out writing on 200WAD. Second, if sitting down to write at least 200 words each day is the tipping point of activity that somehow is deleterious to your health, either writing is not for you or you have to upgrade your resilience.

    Brandon Wilson avatar Brandon Wilson | Jun 14, 2019 12:40:42
    • 1

      @brandonwilson that's great to hear. Same here. I think in fact the longer you write, the easier and more enjoyable it gets isn't it?

      Jason Leow avatar Jason Leow | Jun 15, 2019 14:49:51
    • 1

      @brandonwilson well, for me it's been a struggle for months to stay here, tet, as I said above, I do calculate the struggle as a part of a process, so if I assumed that because of that "writing is not" for me, I would have to have a serious mental breakdown...
      For now, my attitude is: "I will be here NO MATTER WHAT"

      Lucjah avatar Lucjah | Sep 20, 2019 09:35:57
    • 1

      @jasonleow @lucjah Last of the diehards! I hope the 200WAD ship never sinks, but if it does we will be on the bridge with Baz until the end.

      Brandon Wilson avatar Brandon Wilson | Sep 20, 2019 07:51:24
  • 1
    • 1

      @abrahamKim nice one! commented!

      Jason Leow avatar Jason Leow | Jun 15, 2019 14:59:04
  • 1

    @jasonleow Learning to break your streak and get back up is part of the growth mechanism. The main critique I formulated to Sergio is that adding rest days is not going to help with establishing the right mindset.

    It's important to learn to break your streak. I kept breaking streaks for five years throughout college. Workout streak, journaling streak, blogging streak... Learning persistency helped me overcome many hardships in life, but that's a story (several ones actually) for another day :)

    Basile Samel avatar Basile Samel | Jun 14, 2019 17:24:40
    • 1

      @basilesamel yes so true. If you can break the streak and climb back up anyway, then the habit is yours to keep! Tbh it's something I'd been thinking about with my 200th day coming...

      Jason Leow avatar Jason Leow | Jun 14, 2019 23:31:04
    • 1

      @jasonleow Take a break :P It's no big deal, just whatever works for you.

      Basile Samel avatar Basile Samel | Jun 14, 2019 17:34:30
    • 1

      @basilesamel Yep, no big deal. I'm not burned out, so I can keep going if I want to. Just considering intentionally breaking it anyway, just to up the challenge and see what can be learned from it.

      Jason Leow avatar Jason Leow | Jun 14, 2019 23:39:37
  • 1

    @jasonleow thanks for bringing this up. You've given me a chance to examine my thinking on motivation.

    I think there's internal and external motivation and they reinforce each other. But total (or primary) dependance on one over the other can lead to imbalance.

    If I'm only motivated by self satisfaction, I'm selfish. If I'm only motivated by applause, I'm letting others evaluate me.

    A "streak" is only one measure (external). And to some extent it is only a "signal" (a warning light).

    Thanks for this post.

    Mike Byrnes avatar Mike Byrnes | Jun 14, 2019 10:19:53
    • 1

      @mikebyrnes thanks for your reflections! Yes, whatever the internal or external motivation, so long as burnout doesn't happen, it's all good.

      Jason Leow avatar Jason Leow | Jun 14, 2019 23:37:15
    • 1

      @jasonleow @mikebyrnes
      "If I'm only motivated by self satisfaction, I'm selfish. If I'm only motivated by applause, I'm letting others evaluate me."
      I really like what you wrote. Though I think that "the streak" is not external motivation at all. It is me who wants to keep my daily habit, I must say I do not care about others opinions on that so much.
      But mayben you meant something else...

      Lucjah avatar Lucjah | Sep 20, 2019 09:28:36
  • 1

    @jasonleow -- a little secret I wasn't going to let anybody on to -- was that many of the leaders on the fellowship board have a single streak -- while, those of us who happily abide a day off here and there -- have several streaks ;-)

    Brian Ball avatar Brian Ball | Jun 14, 2019 08:10:04
    • 1

      @brianball that's why I quite liked the teardrop 'streak', despite not accumulating a streak on it before. Was considering toying with it then, but alas it was removed. But anyway, single streak or several streaks isn't the main point I was making..so long as there's no burnout, single streak is fine too. One is not inherently better than the other.

      Jason Leow avatar Jason Leow | Jun 14, 2019 23:35:28
    • 1

      @jasonleow @brianball A day off here and there is just life. Nothing special about it. Consistency and discipline are in short supply.

      Brandon Wilson avatar Brandon Wilson | Jun 14, 2019 12:40:35
    • 1

      @brianball @brandonwilson exactly. though i would build on your point: consistency and discipline that doesn't compromise wellbeing. ;)

      Jason Leow avatar Jason Leow | Jun 15, 2019 14:44:08
    • 1

      @brianball hahaha! cool perspective :D

      Lucjah avatar Lucjah | Sep 20, 2019 09:25:43
  • 1

    @jasonleow I think that keeping a streak is important and does help motivate you. However, having a cheat day does sound an interesting concept. I guess we just have to remember that the writing is for us, not just for the streak. I have already found myself thinking of writing things that might be more readable, or on topics that might get more comments, which is a bad thing. 200wad should be a place to write whatever you want, with the freedom to drop that streak if needs be.

    Twizzle avatar Twizzle | Jun 14, 2019 16:01:09
    • 1

      @twizzle well said. Ultimately the streak serves us, not the other way round.

      Jason Leow avatar Jason Leow | Jun 14, 2019 23:09:45
    • 1

      @jasonleow @twizzle Yup, what you said. My streak is MY streak. I can continue, I can break it. Whatever. I just write to write, occupy/amuse myself and anyone else who may want to take the time to read. I'll keep writing until I don't and this is ok for me too.

      Jeff Riddall avatar Jeff Riddall | Jun 14, 2019 14:27:56
    • 1

      @Rawhead yeaaah nicely put. πŸ’ͺTook the words right outta my mouth

      Jason Leow avatar Jason Leow | Jun 15, 2019 14:42:07
    • 1

      @jasonleow @twizzle
      "I have already found myself thinking of writing things that might be more readable, or on topics that might get more comments, which is a bad thing"
      why would it be a bad thing??? It's just another, different attitude, maybe an experiment to abandon, maybe a feature to work on
      I think there are NO BAD WAYS TO WRITE HERE
      (Well... I have kinda felt for quite a while that "my way" is a very bad way... LOL... But I am JUST changing this opinion and my attitude

      Lucjah avatar Lucjah | Sep 20, 2019 09:24:54
    • 1

      @lucjah yeah I generally agree there are no bad ways to write here... but up to a certain limit. Where that limit is, is entirely unique to the individual. Too many months in a row of uninspired writing is generally a signal for myself, to check if writing here is still serving me, or is the streak just giving me a false sense of keeping it together.

      Jason Leow avatar Jason Leow | Sep 20, 2019 21:18:03
contact: email - twitter / Terms / Privacy