STAREDU dated April 5 carried a fiery heading – BURNOUT! The visual representation of the word alone was enough to raise an alarm.
Then on reading the cover story you surely drew comfort knowing that we can all turn ‘fire-fighters’ to douse any smouldering fire before it burns us out.
Now let’s do a reality check: Are you feeling mentally exhausted because you’re not sure what to focus on? Have you allowed stress to overwhelm you because so many uncertainties stare you in the face? Here’s a suggestion: You do keep a journal, don’t you? If you don’t, it’s a good time to start while you’re on time-out. Trust me, as you pour out your thoughts, describe and recognise how you feel, it helps you self-reflect, and best of all, it helps you beat stress. By organising and putting your thoughts into words, you show yourself to be in charge.
You do not allow yourself to be burntout, instead, you let the words burn a hole in your paper!
Through journaling, you improve your thought processing skills and gain clarity of your priorities. Hey, you also improve your English, and your creative writing skills!
On that note, let me share what that issue of StarEdu led me to a find! What? “Found poetry.” So called because the poem here is loosely founded on its cover story – BURNOUT – with quite a few expressions sourced from the story.
If you read the story you will be better able to relate to this verse... and oh, perhaps now is also the time for you to immerse yourself in writing verse. If you’ve never written a poem before, begin with a “found poem” using the newspaper as your resource. You will find it makes a good start!
(Note to students: For those rhythmically inclined, you can even read this to a beat – like a jazz chant! Just do a little chunking before you begin. Why not do this in your Zoom class? Have FUN!)
Have frazzled you out and got you nowhere?
A little stress, it is stressed, causes no distress
Be still for a bit to rest and reflect...it’s okay to do less
Beat the burnout, let it not burn you out
Trust that you have the needed clout!
Avoid cognitive dissonance
Connect with your inner essence
It’s time for self-discovery!
Waste not this one opportunity
Academic achievements aside...
What else have you inwardly eyed but not tried?
Within the safe, soothing space of your home
Let your mind freely roam
Then your creativity lay bare
And with others freely share
As adequate proof and support
To help ward off the onslaught of burnout!
The writer is a former lecturer who is a Star-NiE freelance consultant-trainer
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