Intensity

by justine

“It’s like, all of a sudden life’s gotten really intense and it also happens to be 102* outside”

That’s what spilled out of my mouth to a friend on the phone while walking to my car in this stupid heat. Bingo! This is exactly what I’ve been experiencing the past few weeks. I’ve gone through three bosses via department restructuring, lost one professional support, added 7 flights and 5 events to my calendar, over-committed my time, escaped into books and generally felt out of sorts.

I’m not sure what changed today, but this is the first day I’ve felt good in a while. I remember feeling awesome on 9.14.12 but the rest of that week, hell the rest of the month, was a challenge.

Chock it up to transitions…?

  • H going back to work after summer
  • Us being back home after the wedding / honeymoon and that project being done
  • My work ramping up
  • My boss leaving + major changes in my department
  • Friends leaving LA, new friends entering my life

This is what clicked into focus this morning: Back to Work: 86 has Merlin Mann and Dan Benjamin talking about Merlin’s schedule changes related to his daughter attending school and his wife going back to work. And he says that he thought the adjustment challenge was having a more constrained work day to accomplish his tasks but that now, after he’s in the transition, he sees that it’s the anxiety of the change and being more responsible for things related to his daughter that were freaking him out.

Spot on. For me it seems to be about managing my own anxiety / fears / hustle around this shift into a new stage – yes, there’s more work on my plate but there also seems to be an intensity around it. Yes the wedding is over and now I’m a wife, but conversations with friends have shifted to engagements / weddings / houses / babies – all big deal topics that make one question their own place in life. Add the general upheaval that travel can bring, a lack of routine, and a bouncing all over work, and you have a pretty good idea of where I’m at.

But for some reason, today the anxiety dissipated. I’ll thank my morning pages writing for some of this – I’ve noticed my writing has taken me to a deeper, more supportive place this week. And serendipity: a hug from H that smoothed out my mood, a random phone call from a former boss, a conversation with a colleague, a phone call with a friend I haven’t spoken to in months… and reminding myself that I’ve felt like this before and, while something may feel wrong, nothing is wrong with me, and if I’ve worked my way out of it before, I can do it again.

Mostly, I feel proud that I was able to gently coax myself into articulating what it was that was “wrong” and ask for what I needed (even in just a quiet thought) and the help started magically appearing. A hug, a phone call, a conversation, a podcast tidbit, an email…

So relieved tonight, & so blessed. xo

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