So this is what burn-out feels like….

3 04 2009

I’ll get right to the point. I’m burnt out. I can’t think straight and I’m exhausted. It’s been a long time coming. Right now I don’t want to see anyone or talk at all. I’m happy to sit and strum my guitarwhile I’m alone. I’m not alone though. My wife has been an incredible support for me thorugh this tough time. It’s all kinda come to a head today.

But right now I can’t stop thinking about things. Meaningless things.  My mind races over things I’ve done, things I have to do, and things I want to do. I’m not sure what to do anymore. Nothing really makes sense. I’ve got these pains in my chest that have been coming up everytime I feel any stress. I’m constantly anxious. I got exhausted doing the dishes tonight. What’s up with that? Things aren’t making a lot sense right now, but there is some clarity.

Today I called my pastor and told him I needed some time off the music team and everything else I’m doing. If I don’t do something quick I’m looking at a nervous breakdown or a heart attack. I should probably see a doctor, or a shrink or something. I’m sure I have issues. I am glad I have a solid theological grounding so I’m not waving the fist at God or anything. It’s all my own fault. I’m a people pleaser. I can’t say no and I run from conflict. I’m outgoing and for me the worst thing in the world is offending someone and having someone not like me. Right now thats not a concern anymore, I don’t care who I offend.

I realised there was a problem when I kept waking up earlier and earlier in the morning. This morning I was wide awake at 5am. My mind racing again. The wake up call came a few hours later when I almost lost it at my wife when she broke something. I had to hold myself back and say “Come on mate, it’s only $20….WHO CARES !!!”.

At this time I can only do a few things, and I’m going to have to say no to a lot. Starting with my blog. It’s been fun blogging. There is a whole subculture out there, and it’s tough to keep coming up with new content for people to encourage repeat visitors. I find myself competing with other blogs thinking about what I can do to get more visitors. To that I say enough. I’m signing off of this blog for a while. I may come back, I may not. But I’m going to start looking after myself. I am saved by Christ as a whole not a soul.

Secondly I’m pulling back from all my activities outside of work. I’m off the music roster at church for a few months. I’m scalling back our homegroup to twice a month, instead of every week.

Thirdly, I’m going to take some time out to relax and seek some wise counsel on next steps. I really identify with Rob Bell right now. In his book velvet elvis he talks about wanting to run away from a successfull church because of burning out. It sums up how I feel.

Lastly, I’m going to give up some of my pipe dreams. I am not a jack of all trades, and I am not super man. I will not be a pastor, body builder, rock star, or successfull investor anytime soon if I carry on the way I am. These dreams need to laid to rest, and awakend when the Lord sees fit.

To everyone who has commented on my blog and challenged my thinking I thank you. Your words will not be forgotten, and I owe you a debt of gratitude. If you’re ever in NZ look me up, we’ll go out for a beer. I have not given up my faith, let me make that clear. There is only one name under heaven by which man can be saved, that is Jesus Christ. He alone is my strength, my shield, my strong tower, my rock. He is the only one I can depend on. I love Him more than anything in this world. He alone gives me purpose and meaning in life. He enables me to love others. I love because he first loved me. Loved me enough to die on the cross for me when I was his enemy, when I hated him and all he represented, when his sacrifice and holiness were an aroma of death to me. He died for me taking all my sin. I died with him that day I was raised with him on the third day. I am hidden in Christ. I cannot say enough good things about my saviour. My prayer is that you find the same joy I have found in Jesus Christ, the son of God. While I am weak I am strong.

My Brothers and Sisters, Grace and peace to you from God our Father, through his son Jesus Christ, by the power of the Holy Spirit.


Grant Marshall 03/04/2009




3 responses

3 04 2009

I’m very sorry to hear how tough things are for you right now. I feel your pain, being exhausted and burned out all the time leads nowhere good and you are doing the right thing here by stepping away from things to get some space and perspective.
You and your wife are in my prayers.

Look into that chest pain, I have a couple friends who are young and in good shape that ended up having heart issues, always better to play it safe with that sort of thing.

I must say, I will very much miss your posts and the conversation.
It has been the interaction between our blogs that led me to see this blogging thing as something worth paying attention to to begin with.

13 04 2009
Kurt Willems

I pray that you would be strengthened by God’s Spirit in your inner being…

15 04 2009

Thanks for the kind words guys. I appreciate it :).
Mason, I’ve been to see a doctor and he think’s its just come down to stress. Heart attacks at my age are very rare. I don’t have any history of heart attacks in my family either which is a relief.

Right now I just feel lead in a different direction and my blogging activity will be taking a back seat – I might keep it ticking over with a few book reviews, every now and then.

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