A rant about burnout, and not just in cosplay.
Too many times I’ve seen promising cosplayers (and people irl) who pour all of their free time into something, but then cannot follow through because of a hurdle and end up giving up before they complete the project.
I’m not callin’ you out. Ok, I am. But, this was me too, okay?
I’ve seen it so much. An aspiring cosplayer decides to purchase 10 different costumes on Taobao. They go to 3-5 conventions a year and bring at least one costume for every day they’re there. They book shoots with photographers at studios and update their social media with those images. They try to sell their costumes to make up for the cost. They meet up with locals and get a few flakes. They hate people. They amass a small following but not enough to make it a sustainable source of revenue. They eventually just give up.
A great life, if that’s all you wanted from cosplay.
The reason these people give up is because they feel the stress from “competing” in the social media game. Even if not directly, we all see the numbers, and we all have preconceptions about people with large followings, even if we try not to. Eventually, dressing up stops being fun and starts feeling like a chore. Then what? It’s no longer worth it to spend an hour putting on your foundation and lashes anymore.
To me, cosplay a little bit more than that. Of course I want to dress up all pretty and be somebody else for a day. But I also want to share and dress up with other people. I came for the costumes, I stayed for the community.
I try to surround myself with people who are wholesome. You just need to find your niche. Some people come for the parties and stay for the booze. That’s cool as well. Just figure out what you want from this little hobby and you decide if it’s worthwhile.
Here are some things I’ve learned to deal with burnout:
- Don’t over-schedule and learn how to take breaks
- Something is better than nothing, even if that something is far from perfect
- Find a work wife to keep you accountable
- Don’t feel guilty about doing other things when you’re supposed to be working
- Find a routine that works for you and make sure your life is balanced
Even today, I had no idea what I wanted to post about. But then I remembered, OH YEAH. I met a person recently who is exactly the kind of person I’ve come to subtly dislike, because they reminded me of my old self.
Buckle up, it’s Shana rant time.
See, this kid, we’ll call them Sasuke. Sasuke was a “gifted” child growing up with a lot of promise and potential. They got through elementary and middle school reletively easily, and high school and university was a piece of cake too. Not saying they didn’t have to study, but they relied on their intelligence and short-term memory to cram. And they always passed.
When something interested Sasuke, they were able to dedicate 100% of their energy towards it. But after a week, they lost that drive and passion and eventually gave up. Sasuke lowkey looked down on people who worked hard, because why should anyone work hard when they could work smart?
Being a young adult, Sasuke has grown to dismiss their problem. Although they recognize their lack of dedication as an issue, they are reluctant to do anything about it, because “that’s just how I am”, Sasuke thought.
Shana met Sasuke and wanted to bitch slap them, but unfortunately, you cannot bitch slap somebody off their high horse through Discord.
I hate people who don’t work hard and rely on their intelligence to get through life but become lowkey depressi as soon as they fail one time. Disclaimer: this is not a depression or mental illness issue. I firmly believe this issue is caused by the parents and teachers grooming children and bringing them up by berating them with “wow you’re smarter than the other kids”.
The people who I see that work hard and love learning new things are the kinds of people who are really successful.
As a high schooler, I had very below-average marks because I literally would not hand in assignments that I didn’t think were good enough to my own standards. So my marks were like, 0, 0, 95, 80, 95, 0, 90. I barely passed. I mean if you worked for anyone (or yourself) and you only handed in half of your tasks, you’re fucked. Idk how smart you are, you’re probably getting replaced very soon.
I woke up and realized that I needed to really tackle my issue of not having any discipline. And while it’s still a work in progress, I think the Shana of 2020 is already miles ahead of the Shana of 2019.
Sasuke, on the other hand, really needs to fucking wake up too or they might have a really rude awakening. Sasuke, if you ever read this: your fucking IQ isn’t going to be able to carry you forever. At the end of the day, I’d rather hire someone who will work hard and train them than someone who already knows everything but has a shit attitude.
Ugh. Sorry not sorry for that rant.
Next week we’ll talk about cosplay or something a little bit more lighthearted again.
Have a great weekend and don’t forget that we still fighting for BLM. It’s not just a one-week thing.