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The Sauce 10-23-2008 07:32 PM

Remedy for becoming burnt out: Change of Scenery?
Hey guys long time reader, finally decided to join to site. Here's my situation I have my comm SEL/MEL and am currently working on my CFI. I've done all my training so far under 141. I'm starting to feel burnt out. I'm feeling really overwhelmed with the pace of training at my school and thinking of giving up on the whole CFI thing and see whats available with just my comm certs. I had a thought of what could cure what ails me. Switching schools. There is another Part 61 school in my area that offers CFI. I was thinking that maybe with Part 61 I can move at the pace that I am comfortable with and will make the rest of my training go more smoothly. I guess I am looking for some input on whether or not you guys think that may help solve my problem or maybe to hear if any of you guys went through a similar situation.

proskuneho 10-23-2008 07:59 PM

I am training a CFI student right now. He is also overwhelmed with the volume of regs, concepts, and knowledge that is necessary. It takes hard work, unless you are "lucky" enough to be at one of those schools that has sweetheart deals with certain examiners and the CFI ride is a joke. When I was in management, I interviewed some instructor candidates from those schools. They couldn't find their hind ends with both hands.
A few aviation employers actually require that their pilots to have CFI/CFII. These certificates are sometimes viewed as one sign of discipline, tenacity, and knowledge on the part of the applicant. I will also say that I have learned so much from being an instructor and having students. You not only learn more about flying, but you also learn more about how to multi-task better and interact with different types of people while flying. You'll enjoy talking your student through an approach setup in low IFR while listening to ATIS and ATC at the same time. No matter how many times you walk them through it on the ground beforehand, things are always different in the air.
I know the CFI/CFII/MEI training can be overwhelming and frustrating, but I think it is worth it. Personally, I might not be able to get a flying job because I might be too old to afford one. But leaving management to instruct has indeed taught me a lot. I say finish what you started. Unless your school is unprofessional, leaving will not solve the issue. You have probably just hit a plateau - totally normal (remember that from the FOI?) Recognize that it will pass, and keep moving forward.
Good luck.

Riverside 10-23-2008 11:14 PM

Wait till you start working 8 hours a day six days a week for three weeks in a row. You will understand what burnt out means. You start praying for a raining day.

Piak 10-23-2008 11:17 PM

Take some time off. Tell your school you need to lighten the load a bit. They work for you. If they don't get it maybe move along.

snippercr 10-24-2008 05:11 AM

I understand. I am a CFI student at a part 141 student. Have checkride in about 6 weeks while taking a full course load and a part time job to pay for it all. I have never been so overwhelmed or stressed out. Do you think a change of scenery is going to help the work load though? Like proskuneho said, there is an opportunity you might get an easier checkride but historically CFI is the hardest. Taking a break may be more of what you need than a chance of scenery. Ask for some time off and while you do, continue studying at your own pace. This give you a bit of an advantage and lets you cool down.

Krafty1 10-24-2008 05:38 AM

The CFI course/ride is intense and studying does become very overwhelming. The best advice I have is to push through it because you will only have to make up ground if you take time off and end up spending more money and take away more of your time, etc. Now once you finish the CFI monster, take some time off while you are applying for CFI spots and I think that burnt out feeling will go away. Believe me just finishing the CFI and passing that checkride is a huge weight off your shoulders and should remedy your problem.

As for being burnt out, I was burnt out about halfway through my instrument training. I think a lot of it comes from doing all my training in a part 141 environment like yours where I would fly 3-4 days/week take classes and work weekends. That and my flying just seemed to drag while I was flying part 141. The only thing that kept me from throwing in the towel was passing checkrides and the week of downtime that I would have in between courses.

Ewfflyer 10-24-2008 06:02 AM

Here's what I did with any of my students, or any of my co-workers, when you start feeling burnt out. Go do something FUN!!! Literally, something that can completely take your mind off all the daily grind and distractions it brings. Honestly, for my flight students, I'd tell them instead of practicing manuevers etc...just go out and fly around, go find your house, just go enjoy the flight. It does wonders because they'll still get in a flight, and usually come back refreshed.

Now in your case, flying might be the last thing you want to do, but what hobbies do you enjoy? Grab some friends, get out for a day or night, or whatever the case may be. People can't go 100% nonstop until a rating is achieved, it'll bring you down!(Like Riverside was talking about). I've been there, done that, it sucks!!!(but the money was nice)

DC2495 10-24-2008 08:39 AM

I stongly suggest becoming an alcoholic...I mean CFI.

All joking aside, I understand how big a role burnout can play in your training. I finished my private through commercial in just over six months, it took me another 6 to get my CFI just because I got burned out. Take care of your self, take your time getting your rating. If you make it through it will prove to be one of the most rewarding feelings you will have. It has over a 70% failure rate (at least it did), it's an awesome feeling when you pass it the first round knowing that nearly 3/4 of people who take it don't pass the first time around. Good LUCK!

the King 10-24-2008 12:16 PM

61 might be right for you. We did ours Part 61 and I never saw the advantage of 141 for a CFI applicant. Like the other guys said, do something you think is fun. Maybe a $100 dollar hamburger (since you've been 141 the entire time), or something outside of aviation.

When I went through training for my current job with a 135 operator, I had to study every night for weeks. But I always took some time, usually right after I got home, to just chill out and destress. You have to unwind somehow and find the good stuff instead of always worrying about how much there still is to learn. Otherwise you don't get anything productive out of the time you do study.

proskuneho 10-24-2008 04:19 PM

I have to agree with everyone who says to go out and have fun. When flight training becomes overwhelming, it is easy to forget why you are doing it in the first place. Do something to remind yourself of why you are doing it. You also need to have some more unrelated fun too.

Good luck. Hang in there. Enjoy the view!

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