TL;DR: Influencer and creator burnout is real. The cost of being an influencer is high but you can avoid it by setting boundaries, communicating with your audience, and a few more ways that we share below.
Being an influencer and a content creator is a full-time job, and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. Unfortunately, it is one of those jobs that looks easy on the outside but is difficult to do in real life.
After all, it’s just you selling yourself. How hard can that be, right?
Well, quite hard, if I may say so myself.
Behind the glitz and the glamour are countless hours that go into brainstorming, storyboarding, ideating, doubting yourself, and starting all over again.
Until that one idea clicks.
That in itself is a resource-intensive process, taking a toll on our mental health. What seems like fun at first, then starts to feel like ‘work.’
Call it stress, call it pressure, call it exhaustion from doing the same thing day after day, or call it what you want. Behind the different names, the real reason you feel down and out is burnout. Burnout is the reason why the graph of your mental health is a downward arrow.
So what exactly is creator burnout?
Think of creator burnout as a slump. An out-of-form phase. A phase where, despite your proven abilities, you are not able to perform. #thngs are just not clicking anymore.
All the creative juices that once flowed through your brain have ceased. The river of motivation has dried up, and there’s no sign of ideas for miles.
Your brain, which used to be thriving with life, is now dead and barren. Just a solitary tumbleweed rolling across the empty spaces.
What does creator burnout look like?
- You feel unsure about yourself.
- You suffer from writer’s block or creator’s block.
- Or just feel emotionally, physically, or mentally stressed out.
All your previous achievements, projects, and work seem as if someone else has done them. Impostor syndrome takes over, and you start to doubt your ability to perform. You hate working, and all you want is to run away and hide from the world.
61% of creators surveyed by ConvertKit for the Creator Economy Report experienced burnout over the last year.
How to deal with creator burnout?
Now, let’s be real.
Creators can’t just go MIA because their work is what pays the bills and keeps the food on the table. And at the end of the day, you have brand commitments and are accountable for them.
That does not mean you have to disregard your mental health. You simply learn to manage being an influencer better, so you don’t face creator burnout.
1. Keep work and personal life separate
Creators have the flexibility to work from wherever they want and when they want. That’s a blessing. But too many times, that blessing turns into a curse as influencers fail to keep their personal life and work life separate.
If you are a work-from-home creator, it is important to establish clear boundaries.
- Dedicate a separate room or a working space for your creative and work commitments.
- Limit your professional activities to that space, and once you exit that space, you cease to work. That’s it. No work beyond working areas.
2. Set specific work time
If you don’t have the space to have a separate work area, then set clear working hours. While you don’t have to follow a strict 9 to 5 timetable, it is also important not to be working 24 x 7.
Hustle culture is cool and quite necessary at times. But it’s not sustainable for long. Set boundaries on:
- How long will you use an app, be it YouTube, Instagram, Twitter, or any other?
- What hours are you available to brands and followers?
Push back on yourself when you feel like “I’ll just reply to one more comment or edit this last Reel.” You don’t actually need to be creating content all the time.
3. Don’t put too many thoughts on trolls
Mental health can also take a deep dive when you interact with too much negativity online. No matter how good you are, there are always going to be keyboard warriors who will criticise something about you.
That’s what trolls do.
Block the haters. It’s not always easy, but that’s exactly what you need to do. Always be open to positive criticism, but when someone with half a brain cell comes to troll, you just wave your hands and say ‘ain’t nobody got time fo dat!’ Be mindful of the ones that deserve respect and ignore the rest. (Oh hey, that rhymed!)
4. Say no to brands you don’t love
Nothing is more valuable than your mental health. If you’re creating content for a brand you don’t like or the process is taking a toll on you. Stop working with them. It’ll free up time for a better brand collaboration.
5. Communicate with your community
The pressure to post everywhere, all the time, and then engage with your community is a big reason behind creator burnout. You fear you will lose followers if you take a break, even a tiny one.
To push content consistently, you can create batch content, so you don’t have to worry about being on your toes all the time. There are tools that can help you schedule your posts.
Moreover, feel free to take a break. Communicate this to your community, especially to the subset of your followers who you feel are demanding too much of you. Tell them that there is only so much you can do.
Creator burnout is normal. Talk about it!
While I can’t promise that you will never feel stressed, I can promise one #thng. Content creation gets easier as you gain more experience, particularly if you set boundaries.
And if you find it hard to do that because you want to create more and earn more, then ask yourself, “how do you want to feel in 2 years or 3 years?“
Finally, in case you need help to take your stress horse by the leash and tame it for a smooth ride, reach out to us.