Experience Research & Design


Invest in Yourself

To fellow attendees and speakers at ELA Conf: 

Now that ELA Conf 2015 has come and gone, I'm left with so much inspiration and I already miss you all. Thank you Joni, LeeAnn, Katy, and Dominique for putting together such an incredible conference. As I said in my talk, you need take time for yourself and I hope you ladies are indulging in the things you find fun and relaxing for the next few weeks and/or months.

Twenty minutes isn't a whole lot of time to share everything I have learned in the last 18 months. Luckily, Marie Mosley's writing workshop has given me the confidence to write and bring more resources to you! (Thanks Marie!)



Additional Items & Thoughts

Some of the things I shared I learned from Sherrie Bourg Carter's book High-Octane Women: How Superachievers Can Avoid Burnout. It's a wonderful book that helps you to understand burnout, why it happens, and strategies on how to avoid it. Her case is that what works for others may not work for superachievers, because we are wired differently. Which is okay! (Yoga isn't for everyone.) Those of us who are always striving for what at times feel like impossible goals are more prone to burnout because we over-extend ourselves. I highly suggest this book if you are getting close, or have hit, burnout. She writes in a very plain-language and simplistic way, because as I mentioned, we are cognitively exhausted.

The Pastry Box Project is an incredible site filled with a million and a half thoughts from technical ideas to well-being. Lucky for you, Ben Callahan wrote about conserving energy today. In March, Dylan Wilbanks, UX Designer based in Seattle, WA, wrote about his burnout and year from hell. Read these and don't be afraid to talk about what you're going through with those close to you, and maybe eventually others. Burnout looks different in every person, and the more exposure you have to the differences, the better idea you may have on how burnout is affecting you. Also, Eileen Webb talks about The Awesomeness Approach ,what it looks like and how it works. Check it out, you know because you're awesome!

One thing that was not mentioned yesterday: others around you will notice your burnout before you do. They will try to express their concern, however you will have your blinders on because you're driving yourself towards a goal or accomplishment. I urge you to listen you your body and to others when they express their concern for you. Try to actively listen. It becomes easy to let others have the space to talk, but you're probably too cognitively burned out to really listen to what they are saying. You may even get defensive over it. Have them write things down if you need them to. It may be easier to absorb rather than trying to remember a conversation.