However, this doesn't mean that you should look for other things to do. No, this means that you need to re-ignite the flame.
When working in EMS, I've worked with an experienced paramedic who also taught EMS courses at a community college. One night, we got into a discussion that led to me suggesting that he was burned out in this career. At first, he seemed a little offended, but on another day, he told me, "You know, I was thinking about what you said. And you're right. I'm burned out!"
He was also an aspiring Christian author. I supposed he was hoping to make it big in the writing business so that he could leave EMS behind.
But why should he leave a field in which he was so successful in? In addition to his many years of experience, he was also an EMS instructor at a college. And with a little more work, he could have accomplished many more EMS-related tasks. And being a potential leader that he was, he could have taken his skills and experience to better benefit his job and the EMS industry as a whole.
Today, six years later, I have lost touch with him and have no idea what he's doing in his life. Hopefully, he didn't mess it up by leaving a successful career behind to pursue other things that may NOT work for him.
Many of you are in the same boat. You are very successful at what you do, but the desire isn't there anymore. Other careers are looking good, and you're just counting down the days when you could leave your current career.
But why would you do that?
Sometimes, when you're burned out, it doesn't mean that you should look for something else. Sometimes, it means that you need to look for other things to do with what you're already doing.
Let's go to another instance. A guy in my church has been in customized building for a while. He has the skills to build things. If you walk into our church before you go into the gym for ZUMBA, you'd notice that we have a brand new background behind the desk. He built that himself!
My wife and I were wondering why he stopped doing something that he was so skilled at doing. His response was that he just rather not do it anymore. And I'm thinking of all the things he would do with those skills, how he could make a business teaching other people to do it, etc., etc.
It blows my mind when people willingly leave something that was successful.
- Someone is a very talented farmer who knows how to grow enough food for a neighborhood, but then stops doing it. Why?
- Someone is an excellent car mechanic who is so skilled that he could build a car from scratch, but he does nothing with those skills. Why?
- Someone is an extremely talented artist, but doesn't care to draw anymore. Why?
When you let yourself get burned out, you're blowing away potential opportunities.
My wife has been a dental assistant for 13 years and has worked in various places in New York, New Jersey, and North Carolina. She is excellent at what she does and is very much requested among dental offices. But she has expressed getting burned out in the dental field. Should she just leave dental assisting altogether, or should she find other things to do with her skills to re-ignite her joy for the dental field?
If you are skillful at something or if you've done anything that has worked well for you, there is really no reason to stop. But there are MANY reasons why you should keep doing what you're doing and to find other things to do with your skills.
Think about your skills as horse poop. Really! Your horse poops, you want to clean it up and throw it away. You see no value in it -- until a farmer comes on your property and expresses strong interests in that poop. You have no idea why anybody would want to use that poop, until the farmer explains fertilization and plentiful crops to you. Then he offers you money to take this poop off your land.
Horse manure (poop) is very valuable among farmer types who want to use the stuff to help produce an abundance of food. But to you, poop is poop!
Same thing with your skills. At this time, your skills are nothing but poop and you want to get rid of this stuff. But just like with horse manure, your skills are highly treasured among certain groups of people who would invest time and money in YOU to use those skills for them.
Sometimes, you have to think about how other people see your skills instead of how you FEEL about your skills.
This is where education comes in. Learn more about all the things you could do with your skills and experiences, and you'd be THOROUGHLY amazed at all the options you have. In no time, your skills would look like gold instead of regular ol' poop.
Don't let burn out ruin you. Take another match and light that wood back up! Maybe you don't care to have wood fire keep you warm anymore, but you could still use it to make S'mores and hot dogs!