I have a very bad habit of overloading my plate. It’s good to keep busy but not at the detriment to health.
My entire life I have been in the endless cycle of overworking myself, getting burnt out, getting rid of a lot of the workload to try to recover only to find new things to take their place and start the cycle all over again. Most of the time this happens through volunteer projects, stuff that I don’t have to take on but do anyway on top of everything else that I have on my plate.
I never do New Years resolutions but this year I made one to eliminate a lot of the volunteer work and avoid taking on new projects; so far in only 14 days of the year this is proving to be just as hard as the usual “eat healthier”, “go to the gym” and “quit smoking” resolutions. I didn’t realize that I had an addiction!
I like volunteering, however I find that I subconsciously feel like I have to “earn my keep” and spearhead fund raising and outreach projects to help the cause. This is not necessary, nobody is asking me to do this. I don’t know why my subconscious feels like it has to prove anything to anybody but I really need to find a way to stop. These projects, however helpful to the cause, are a lot of stress and take up a lot of time. In the end, my mental health is suffering.
As I try to step back from all of this my brain keeps coming up with new ideas for projects or I keep having to hold back from jumping in and taking over from whoever is now running those projects. It’s such a struggle! Is there a Volunteerholics Anonymous Group?
So since I can’t really have idle hands, I am trying to instead keep busy with paid projects. If I am going to be stressed and overworked I might as well be getting paid for it. In this process I have learned, that while bookkeeping doesn’t pay as well as web design, I enjoy it a heck of a lot more. I actually like doing the stuff that most people hate. I am very tempted to build a new website to get more than the occasional client.
I just hope that I find the strength and willpower to avoid falling off the wagon. Meanwhile, if you see me volunteering or proposing new projects, you are authorized to slap me.