Taking on Too Much – From Burnout out to Balance one moment at a time!

So the 1st year in in this crazy adventure into Ubuntu and FOSS I think I did really well with blogging what was going on and how me – average mom and non-technical end users was finding things.
Heading into year number 2 I haven’t found quite as much time to note where I am at what I am doing and how I am experiencing things but there have been reasons for that.
I’ve been traveling and speaking more at events, I’ve been helping plan more events and writing blog posts and articles for Linux Pro and Ubuntu User Magazine. As well as staying invovled in the Ubuntu Community with my LoCo team, Ubuntu News, and the various Ubuntu Weeks.  Needless to say  – I love it.  But like the saying goes –  Too much of a good thing isn’t.
Recently I had the opportunity to join the main speaker line up at the Ohio Linux Fest.  I felt extremely honored and humbled to say the least.
The talk I gave there was all about my experience with Burnout this past cycle.  Yep you guessed all that stuff above that I absolutely love doing left unchecked can quickly spirial into what I call “Volunteer Vertigo and High Tech Hangovers”. Which by the way was the the title of my talk.

I figured for any talk to be effective and the speaker to have some credit then you have to be honest and you have to have some experience with the subject matter.  Sadly I have gotten more intimate with “Volunteer Vertigo” than I really ever expected to be.  I can tell you that by being honest about it and including my experience in my talk I got some great feedback and people felt comfortable to share their own experiences with me privately while at OLF and even through various emails.  Those who shared thank you so much.
One of the things I heard many times after my talk was “Thank You”.  People said Thank you for validating how they were feeling, Thank you for being honest about where I was and what steps I am taking to not let that happen to me again, Thank you for making me aware that it’s not just in our paying jobs that burnout can occurr.
I tried hard to take a very serious subject and make it as lighthearted as possible without taking a way from the seriousness of the topic.
I asked a friend of mine who attended my talk, “What did you think about it? Did you enjoy it.”  Their face contorted in a way that made me think they were in pain and they said, “Enjoyed it – no!  The burnout mirror you held up clearly showed my relfection a little too much.”  I mentioned I wasn’t trying to make anyone feel bad about themselves only to have people pay attention to the warning signs and “life alerts” and to stop “collecting the sheep”  (You’ll understand the reference if you were at my talk or you look at the slides).  He then went on to tell me, “No Amber it was a great talk, I just know what I need to do now.”
I told people I am not a doctor or medical professional of any kind nor do I play one on TV.  I wanted to give this talk because when I read Jono Bacon’s book Art of Community I half heartedly paid attention to that part of the book, and then when Jono gave his burnout talk I listened, and I understood the words he was saying but I didn’t think it would happen to ME!  HA! (Let me pause here to just laugh at myself for a moment.  You can laugh too especially those of you who decided well we can’t make her change her mind – I’ll just pull up a chair and watch how this unfolds.  Thank goodness you all on the sidelines also stuck around to help and encourage me to 1) talk about it and 2) work through it.)
Anyway  – I told people at Ohio Linux Fest I would be blogging about “From Burnout to Balance” from my perspective.  I’ve had a few people ask when I would start to blog about it  – well here is post one 🙂
More later!
Amber

So the 1st year in in this crazy adventure into Ubuntu and FOSS I think I did really well with blogging what was going on and how me – average mom and non-technical end users was finding things.

Heading into year number 2 I haven’t found quite as much time to note where I am at what I am doing and how I am experiencing things but there have been reasons for that.

I’ve been traveling and speaking more at events, I’ve been helping plan more events and writing blog posts and articles for Linux Pro and Ubuntu User Magazine. As well as staying involved in the Ubuntu Community with my LoCo team, Ubuntu News, and the various Ubuntu Weeks.  Needless to say  – I love it.  But like the saying goes –  Too much of a good thing isn’t.

Recently I had the opportunity to join the main speaker line up at the Ohio Linux Fest.  I felt extremely honored and humbled to say the least.

The talk I gave there was all about my experience with Burnout this past cycle.  Yep you guessed all that stuff above that I absolutely love doing left unchecked can quickly spirial into what I call “Volunteer Vertigo and High Tech Hangovers“. Which by the way was the the title of my talk.

I figured for any talk to be effective and the speaker to have some credit then you have to be honest and you have to have some experience with the subject matter.  Sadly I have gotten more intimate with “Volunteer Vertigo” than I really ever expected to be.  I can tell you that by being honest about it and including my experience in my talk I got some great feedback and people felt comfortable to share their own experiences with me privately while at OLF and even through various emails.  Those who shared thank you so much.

One of the things I heard many times after my talk was “Thank You”.  People said Thank you for validating how they were feeling, Thank you for being honest about where I was and what steps I am taking to not let that happen to me again, Thank you for making me aware that it’s not just in our paying jobs that burnout can occurr.

I tried hard to take a very serious subject and make it as lighthearted as possible without taking a way from the seriousness of the topic.

I asked a friend of mine who attended my talk, “What did you think about it? Did you enjoy it.”  Their face contorted in a way that made me think they were in pain and they said, “Enjoyed it – no!  The burnout mirror you held up clearly showed my relfection a little too much.”  I mentioned I wasn’t trying to make anyone feel bad about themselves only to have people pay attention to the warning signs and “life alerts” and to stop “collecting the sheep”  (You’ll understand the reference if you were at my talk or you look at the slides).  He then went on to tell me, “No Amber it was a great talk, I just know what I need to do now.”

I told people I am not a doctor or medical professional of any kind nor do I play one on TV.  I wanted to give this talk because when I read Jono Bacon’s book Art of Community I half heartedly paid attention to that part of the book, and then when Jono gave his burnout talk I listened, and I understood the words he was saying but I didn’t think it would happen to ME!  HA! (Let me pause here to just laugh at myself for a moment.  You can laugh too especially those of you who decided well we can’t make her change her mind – I’ll just pull up a chair and watch how this unfolds.  Thank goodness you all on the sidelines also stuck around to help and encourage me to 1) talk about it and 2) work through it.)

Anyway  – I told people at Ohio Linux Fest I would be blogging about “From Burnout to Balance” from my perspective.  I’ve had a few people ask when I would start to blog about it  – well here is post one 🙂

More later!

Amber

akgraner

2 Responses to “Taking on Too Much – From Burnout out to Balance one moment at a time!

  • Oh sweetie, that muddle of arrows is missing sooo much. It doesn’t even mention being the UWN wrangler or the Ubuntu Women leadership-related stuff!

Trackbacks & Pings

  • Links 28/9/2010: Pinguy OS 10.04.1.2 Reviews, GNU/Linux Used by Children in Brazil and Asia | Techrights :

    […] Taking on Too Much – From Burnout out to Balance one moment at a time! I’ve been traveling and speaking more at events, I’ve been helping plan more events and writing blog posts and articles for Linux Pro and Ubuntu User Magazine. As well as staying involved in the Ubuntu Community with my LoCo team, Ubuntu News, and the various Ubuntu Weeks. Needless to say – I love it. But like the saying goes – Too much of a good thing isn’t. […]

    11 years ago

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