One Infinite Life
July 8, 2015

I took an unintentional break from blogging and this is what I learnt... http://oneinfinitelife.com/the-secret-to-doing-your-best-work

I recently took an unintentional break from blogging because I was creatively burnout.

The university semester had come to an end. I had handed in my last assignments and finished my last classes. I packed up my house and moved back home.

And I was planning on diving back into blogging as soon as possible.

But that never happened.

I was exhausted and completely drained. I had no ideas and even when I tried I couldn’t create anything worthy of reading anyway.

No matter how hard I pushed, it just wasn’t happening.

Cue: Mega frustration.

One day I was out walking and listening to an amazing episode of The Lively Show with Alexandra Franzen, where she shared this incredible truthbomb…

You cannot produce your best work on an empty tank - Alexandra Franzen http://oneinfinitelife.com/the-secret-to-doing-your-best-work

This was a lightbulb moment for me and inspired me to start filling my tank.

Over the past month I have come to realise that…

The secret to doing your best work is to create from a full tank  twit-bird

This has revolutionised my approach to my work (and life in general).

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In the same episode of The Lively Show, Jess shared Johnathon Field’s three basket theory, which states that we have three containers in our lives:

 

 

The theory states that the strongest basket is always limited by the weakest basket, and we cannot keep pouring all of our energy into just one of these baskets.

In order to grow one basket you don’t need to keep pouring more energy into that one, but instead focus on filling up the other baskets and naturally it will have an effect on the empty basket.

For example, if you want to grow your contribution basket, you don’t need to focus on pouring more into this one, but instead focus on filling up the connections and vitality baskets, and this will have an effect on the contribution basket.

Even though this concept seemed counter-intruitive, I was intrigued by it.

Over the past month I’ve been playing with this concept and from my experience I can honestly say it works.

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8 ideas to help you fill your tank

 

Stillness. Connect to yourself. Meditate if that’s your thing (it’s mine!) Be mindful and present. Go on mindful walks. Colour a mandala. Sit on your meditation cushion. Do whatever it is that helps you connect back in with yourself.

 

Nature. I don’t know what it is but spending time in nature is so grounding, rejuvenating, and inspiring.

 

 

Connecting with other people. Spend time with people you love, people who make you happy, and people that make your inspired. Surrounding yourself with positive people makes life infinitely better.


Self-care. 
Start with the basics: drinking lots of water, eating nourishing food and getting enough sleep. Honour what it is you need to do to look after yourself. Some days I just stayed in my pyjamas, watched movies and drank herbal tea all day.

 

Movement. Get your sweat on. In Legally Blonde, Elle Woods says “exercise gives you endorphins. Endorphins make you happy” — and I’d like to add that endorphins also make you more inspired, creative and therefore help you to do your best work.

 

Devote to your spiritual practice. Whatever that means for you.

 

Going on an inspiration diet. By that I mean consume stuff that inspires you, like blogs, books, podcasts, videos and movies. I love watching TED talks and have a bookmark on my computer filled with inspiring ones to watch.

 

Shake up your life. By doing things you wouldn’t normally do. Take a different route on your walk. Choose a book from a genre you don’t normally read. Variety really does spice up life.

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The outcome of my operation fill tank was that I felt replenished and full of inspiration.

When we focus on filling ourselves up first it allows us to do our best work more sustainably.

 

If you’re feeling like you’re not doing your best work (whatever that is for you) ask yourself: what can I do to fill myself up?

 

Remember that you can’t do your best work on empty tank, so fill it up awesome human!

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Now I would love to hear from you in the comments below with an answer to this question: What do you do when you’re feeling burnout and want to replenish yourself?

 

Here’s to doing our best work,

One Infinite Life

 

 

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  • Love it Chloe! All SOOO true, how can we give our all when we aren’t ALL in ourselves? Love the point on ‘going on an inspiration diet’. I have defs been hitting up the podcasts and youtube clips extra this week! Yah! Thanks for sharing X

    • Thank you! I am so glad it resonated with you Tracey. Inspiration diets are awesome! I’ve been watching a lot of TED talks lately, which has been super inspiring.

  • Anne

    Fantastic blog article Chloe. Absolutely LOVE it. Thanks for sharing such great insight. x

  • Katie

    Love these ideas to try, the next time I have a “creative block”. So helpful! It’s very true that when we keep “pushing” to create, it just doesn’t happen…but if we “fill our tank” and inspire ourselves in other ways, and “shake up our life” (I love that one), we can feel in such a better space to create and express more freely. Thank you for sharing x

    • I am so glad it was useful for you Katie. I so agree, pushing just doesn’t help at all. I love the shake up your life point to, sometimes by doing the same things we can get stagnant without really realising it. Thank you for sharing your thoughts 🙂

  • Wonderful post Chloe, and so true! And I’m excited to listen to that podcast, LOVE Alex Franzen 🙂

    • Thank you Tahlia – glad you liked it. The podcast episode is AMAZING. I have listening to it several times now. So many nuggets of wisdom in it. They also talk about Alex’s “today is not over yet” mindset shift, which has become a bit of a mantra for me when I’m having a “bad” day. I hope you enjoy it! 🙂

  • How amazing! It’s all so true. Sometimes you have to just let the process do it’s thing before you start moving. Love! xx

    • So glad you enjoyed it Mandi. Yep totally agree, sometimes it’s hard to let go and stop forcing yourself to make it happen, but from my experience it’s far more effective.

  • I can so relate to this ChIoe, especially on the blogging front. I’ve also found it helpful to ask myself whether I’m focussing on the real, important work, or just the ‘urgent’ work. So I’ve been focussing on getting the important work done frist, which is much more aligned with my energy and where I want to be. Forcing crap kills our energy! x

    • So glad that you resonated with this Fran. I love that approach and I completely agree forcing stuff just completely zaps our energy! Thanks for sharing your thoughts 🙂

  • Chloe, I loved this post so much! My gosh, I have a very sketchy habit of trying to work when my tank is only half full. I think many of us do, but really what’s the point?! I’ve set the intention to switch off social media so that I can fully recharge without urges to check online. For me, my best ways are meditation, reading, listening to podcasts, sleep and exercise out in nature. All so important! Thanks for sharing your insights. X

    • Thank you lovely Chelsea, I am so glad you liked it. Yep, I completely agree, I really think many of us have that habit too. Switching off social media is always a great idea when needing to recharge, love it!

  • Wow I needed that quote now beyond ever, thank you for sharing! 🙂

  • Great article Chloe! These tips are definitely going to help me out. I also notice a huge difference in my attitude and well being when I increase my water consumption.

    • Thanks lovely Kate, I am so glad you enjoyed it and found it useful. Drinking water is so simple and effective, I find it makes me feel well, I have better mental clarity and are therefore more productive.

      PS. So looking forward to connecting with you next week 🙂

  • I recently have found myself going through the same process of understanding that not until do I fill my tank up can I really give value or do what my intention is because I’ll be drawing from empty. Thank you for this reminder and confirmation Chloe! xx

    • Thank you for taking the time to comment Kajal. What you said is SO true, and so many people in my life (including myself) have been going through this realisation lately. I really do believe that we need to fill ourselves up first in order to give, create or serve in any way.