Hello everyone and welcome to another rambling article.
I've been musing over how to construct this article for some time, as every time I start it I'm normally unhappy with it in ten lines!
So what is burnout - simply speaking it's when you can't be arsed/actively dislike some aspect of anything - but in this case it'll be more wargaming related.
I've experienced multiple types of burnout in different ways throughout my hobby life.
It's ranged from recently where the idea of painting any more German infantry just disgusted me so much I sold any remaining ones.
Or how I got burnt out by the 40K tournament scene at the end of 5th edition amid a never ending array of what felt like overpowered and increasingly one sided new lists (my poor eldar then felt very unloved)
Or even when I quit playing blood bowl (still the best decision in my life lol) after the never ending league of doom which actively made me want to stop playing that have ever again - 5 years ago!
I keep trying to avoid all these types of burnout as a) I love painting, b) I enjoy tournaments and c) I enjoy gaming with mates. So how do I avoid burnout in these?
Well painting wise I every so often do something completely different - currently there is a Malifeaux starter box for when that need arises, last time it was an Eldar Flyer for 40K. Especially with large/long projects having a break every so often really helps - and I've also found that even after a break I'm not interested I'll do yet another 'something else' as when I painting without 'love' frankly the results always look worse!
Tournaments is an interesting one I find. I never play lots in a year as I have many other commitments (a rugby season ticket and a girlfriend being the principle ones) I also discovered going with an army I enjoy using vs one which is 'good' is also beneficial. I remember well the multiple tables of grey knights I saw at one tournament, and frankly loved the mid tournament variety of lists - I sometimes fear the predominance of allied infantry will cause the same problem - so running around with axis tanks is a nice antidote! The lack of doing them regularly also keeps them fresh and fun!
As for playing the game in general - what helps keep it fresh for me is a two pronged approach, firstly I only regularly play people I like - if I'm going to spend a whole evening with someone who irritates me just for a game I'm mad! Alongside this is playing competitive game - and by that I know to bring a tournament list sometimes and a less tournament list at others.
I think burnout is a huge risk in wargaming - I don't think I've heard other friends with other hobbies mention it anywhere near as much as gamers do.
So if any of you have ways you manage it I'd love to hear it.