Find your Inner Fire [AdviceDog] Prevent Burnout
Yeah, apologies for using a 4chan meme, but it’s so painfully appropriate here.
And yes, SPIRIT OF THE DECADE will resume later at an Internet near you.
Now then, with all this talk about burnout, jaded fans being massive douches (if they’re a douche to begin with, they will be douches justifying thier need to be all douchey) and people claiming either the moral or experiential high ground to heap scorn on people, I think it’s time we stopped trying to give “tips” on how to prevent or solve burnout and look at the root cause of it.
If there’s one thing I have discovered in over 3 years of animéblogfagging, it’s this. Finding what drives you to write about cartoons for manchildren is central to why you enjoy said cartoons. Or pen and paper RPGs. Or History. Or getting to know other people. Or just about anything you can think of.
This drive, more commonly known as a motivation, or in this case, the inner fire, is a rather tricky thing. For most people, it’s not easily discovered save for a divine revelation or long hours of painful, agonizing search and reflection. For some people, they ride on a crest of emotion which never fades. For others, the emotions are gone and all that’s left is a barren wasteland.
For those of you who are still reading and are in that barren wasteland where nothing seems to begood and wonderful, well, fear not. There’s hope yet for you. See, this is where you’ll be finding out why do you do that thing you do. Heck, for those of you riding that giant wave of emotion, well, it’s useful too.
The first question you gotta ask yourself is Why did you watch animé in the first place? Is it a cherished memory from your childhood (like mine and a few others)? Because it was a hip, cool thing to do? Influenced by other passionate bloggers to watch your first show? Friends? A sense of intellectual superiority over all that you’ve watched up until now? Knowing why you stepped into this “subculture” is a very good stepping stone to discovering your motivation.
Second question. Why then did you blog about animé. The need to tell people how cool this new animated thing from Japan is? Ego-complex? How much it changed your life? Academia? Peer pressure? Finding out why you blog is very, very related to the first question, and would probably lay the foundation for the hard soul-searching that is to come.
The third question is more for the jaded, cynical of us. Why are you feeling so jaded, so disappointed, so cynical? Seen too much and need a break? Animé in general not living up to your expectations? Too much moé in your diet? It becoming an obssession and not a hobby? Too many retarded fans and not enough “voices of reason”? This question here is to help you find out the root cause of your frustrations and/or jadedness. And by then, you’d probably have found out why and might want to take steps to alleviate it.
And the fourth question. In spite of all this, are you still interested in the “subculture” to jump back in and why? This is related to the first question, and your answer to the first question and the fourth should be the same. Congratulations, you’re beginning to finnd that inner fire that’ll make your blood run so hot even the combined efforts of JAM PROJECT, Nobuyuki Hiyama, Tomozaku Seki and Go Nagai together could possibly not do it enough JUSTICE.
Though I must warn you. Realizing your inner fire isn’t for everyone. For some of us, it’s more or less a religious experience. Well, it’s for me in any case. Some of us have motivations that run counter to what is good (letting people know how cool cartoons for manchildren are is probably the closest thing to “good” I’ll consider) and I’ve seen that in quite a few people. And many of us will probably never find it.
Still, it’s a good diagnostic tool for when you crash and burn. I hope it’s been helpful.
And for those of you who actually care: Don’t worry for me. I’m focusing on the Source of my Inner Fire, and not the fire itself. Now that’s something completely different and would probably turn the entire post religious. Not that I mind, though, but it’s for the benefit of others that I try to keep it as religion-free as humanly possible.
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