The paradox of self-employment burnout

The paradox of self-employment burnout

“I miss having a job.”

I recently confided with a friend that I missed the closure of working for a paycheck. No, I don’t miss the Monday Morning meetings, the weekend conference calls and being tethered to email. But a job has much clearer boundaries than entrepreneurship. Yes, you can always be improving – but with a job, your set of tasks and responsibilities is self-contained. Or maybe the grass is always greener.

And then it hit me. I’m teetering on the edge of creator burnout.

There’s a romanticized version of being a solopreneur. Work when you want. On whatever you want. Without a commute. (And in your gym clothes, ahem.)

But what isn’t discussed is the unspoken expectation of content creation. And what started as five links, over five years, somehow morphed into a blog, AMAs, Slack channels, office hours, online courses and YouTube videos.

I love 98% of the work. But it hit me this week: I’m exhausted.

And this exhaustion is showing up in my marriage (emotional distance), my children (irritation), my health (drinking up, sleep down) and the nagging feeling of never doing enough.

So I’m going to put less pressure on myself. Besides taking next week off, I’m not certain I know what that means. But I’m going to ratchet down the intensity so that I can rediscover my footing.

Khe Hy
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Khe Hy is the creator of RadReads.