The Lazy Man's Way to Avoid Burnout

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This post has stuff about religion. My perspective has changed

Here’s the secret of avoiding burnout: once a week muster everything you have; gather all of your mental powers; get your best clothes, your nicest tie; call your mom and then… don’t do anything. That’s right be lazy. But first let’s get our facts straight.


fatigue, frustration, or apathy resulting from prolonged stress, overwork, or intense activity.

“burn-out.” Unabridged (v 1.1). Random House, Inc. 14 Jul. 2008.

I’ve been serving on the worship team at my church for nearly 7 years. I suppose you could define these last couple of years as apathetic. I never practiced, I began showing up late, and the joy of playing my guitar each week was totally lost. Something had to give and I was finally released from the team.

I doubt that serving in the band for all those years caused any “prolonged stress, overwork, or intense activity” like the definition says. But I’m sure that plenty of other things in my life did. My marriage had been riddled with conflict. I started a business. I changed jobs. That stuff could have easily induced burn-out. But if there was one simple thing I could have done to help, it would have been a real Sabbath.


The holy day of rest and reflection observed each Saturday among the Jews. This custom fulfills the third of the Ten Commandments (“Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy”). The Sabbath commemorates the last of the seven days of Creation as described in the Book of Genesis, the day God rested from his labors of creating the heavens and the Earth.

Note: Christians have traditionally kept Sunday as a weekly day of rest in adaptation of the Jewish observance, and in commemoration of the Resurrection of Jesus. Some denominations, such as the Seventh-Day Adventists, observe Saturday as the Sabbath.

“sabbath.” The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition. Houghton Mifflin Company, 2005. 14 Jul. 2008.

Okay, I have to admit something. I lied a little bit in the opening paragraph and in the title. A Sabbath day isn’t a lazy day. But it’s not a work day either. Specifically, it’s a break in routine, a pause, a day of reflection, and a full day of the week, and there are a lot of reasons you’d want to take one. Don’t get legalistic though. Jesus most certainly didn’t. But he did take the time to get away. As you read through the bible you’ll notice that Jesus would frequently withdrawl to pray;

By observing the Sabbath in a non-religious way I believe that we can start to slow down that burn cycle. Of course those other things that are causing it will have to be dealt with, but the rest that comes from the Sabbath can help.