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Subject:RE: Losing my profession? From:david -dot- locke -at- amd -dot- com To:"TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com> Date:Wed, 30 May 2001 21:42:20 -0500
I am reading a book, the title of which I cannot accurately recall, but it
was a Jungian psychologist looking at the trap of creative professions. It
turns out that most creative professions are not creative. All of them tend
towards the manufacturing, the boring, the repetitious. A journalist friend
of mine went back to J-school to get a master's degree with the hope of
escaping the tedious task of rewriting an endless stream of press releases.
TW is one of those burnout professions. Most practitioners only last two
years. When I meet older TWs I always ask them what they do to avoid
burnout. They usually take a break and hole up in an allied profession. They
write for themselves. They write a novel. They write poetry. They write a
Burnout is also caused by caring about things nobody else cares about. So
we, like nurses and others in caring professions, come down with it like the
plague. When you get beyond it thinking that you have recovered, it follows
you ever ready to send you on a rebound. It never goes away once you've
fallen victim to it.
Another reason you have found burnout is that you did this for money. It was
never you. You betrayed yourself for cash. Tech even now after years of it
is not you. And, the efforts you had to exert to make up for your lack of a
geek view of tech and fluidity with tech had to be vast. It wasn't you. The
whole time you toiled with it, the things that were you were not exploited
by you. You couldn't take the opportunities that were more aligned with you.
The sad fact is that you would have made more money from being aligned with
your identity than you ever made from TW. So you have all this driving you
towards burnout as well.
Yes, absolutely, find something else to do with yourself. Get alignment.
Know yourself. Don't think money. And, no, don't look back. If creativity is
what drives you, then take that drive. But, no, don't look back. Don't think
that you have recovered, you haven't. And, no, they will never care.
Burnout is systemic to this profession. From your description of yourself,
you had more reasons to burnout than most of us. Listen to those reasons.
And, take the time to turn those reasons into opportunities.
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