This past week while I was working (over-the-road truck driver), I decided to leave my computer at home. I felt I needed to step away from my genealogy research for a short time. Even though we love it, sometimes it’s good to put it down and take a break.
Here are some reasons not to overwhelm yourself with your research and to step away (just for a bit).
Avoiding Information Overload: Whether you’ve just started a new project or research question or have been butting up against a brick wall for years, research can be overwhelming, particularly with the vast amount of information available. It’s easy to get lost in all those documents, records, and family trees. Taking a break can help you avoid information overload and prevent burnout. Stepping away from your research for a while allows you to recharge and approach it with fresh eyes when you return.
Gaining New Insights: Taking a break from genealogy research provides an opportunity to gain new insights and perspectives. When you dive headfirst into any task for an extended period, it’s easy to develop tunnel vision and miss out on alternative approaches. By stepping away, you give your mind the chance to process what you’ve already learned, potentially leading to breakthroughs and new ideas when you come back to your research.
Maintaining Mental and Emotional Well-being: Genealogy research can be an emotional journey, particularly when uncovering difficult or tragic stories from the past. Taking breaks allows you to take care of yourself, process any emotions that may come up, and maintain a healthy balance in your life.
Exploring Other Interests: Taking breaks from genealogy allows you to explore other activities and passions. Engaging in different hobbies not only provides a well-rounded life but also allows you to bring fresh perspectives and renewed energy back to your research when you return to it.
Connecting with Living Relatives: While the focus of genealogy research is often on uncovering the past, it’s equally important to connect with living relatives in the present. Taking a break from research can create opportunities to make those connections with family members. This can lead to conversations that are meaningful and can add new information to your genealogy research. It also establishes a deeper meaning of who you are in your family and your shared heritage.
Genealogy tip: Remember to keep your genealogy research journey in perspective. Taking regular breaks will bring added benefits to your research and make your journey that much more enjoyable.
How can I help? Contact me to get started on your own family history journey.