I work in a profession where burnout is a huge problem. I am an IT professional where there is always a hot project or a customer need, or something. It is never ending and sometimes it is impossible to take 30 minutes of uninterrupted to have lunch.
I just read and article by Brein Posey posted on TechRepublic that talks about the 10 things IT folk need to do to avoid burnout.
I think the advice in this article can be applied to any occupation. Item number 4-Blow off some steam really got me thinking about my own hobbies and more specifically about woodcarving. Mr. Posey states that a good stress reliever is a hobby that takes total concentration to remove all thoughts about work or whatever stressor you have. This is what woodcarving does for me.
One of the great things about woodcarving is that it is portable. I am writing this posting setting in Swansboro NC, waiting on my ride to get out of the path or hurricane Irene, which is to make land fall just a few miles to the east. When I finish typing this I will pickup my little snowman project and my Flexcut Carving Jack until I am taken away. When I get to my safe location, I will still have my project to keep me busy while riding this storm out. Very few hobbies allow this type flexibility.
Back to the stress topic, after I finish a carving session, I do feel more relaxed and often times puts the events of a hard day into perspective. Now obviously woodcarving is not the only thing you need to in a stress relief program. You still need to eat right, exercise, socialize (and not with facebook), enjoy a hobby and spend time with the ones you love.
So today, have a healthy dinner with the one you love, go for a walk together, and do a little woodcarving. You will see your stress level start to decrease.