I don't think I have ever gone this long without posting something before, but February was a long month, even though it is actually the shortest month. As for why it has been so long, I wish I had a good answer other than, maybe, "tired". That can be tired as in physically, mentally, emotionally, etc. While it may not seem like much on the outside, writing this stuff can be taxing on me. Granted that I enjoy this...I would be doing it for going on 13 years if I didn't...but sometimes things just get in the way.
Work has been taxing, and I readily admit that I am needing to learn new skills to make it work. The skills, by the way, have nothing to do with strategic job stuff. More like the skills associated with balancing my needs to do everything right, self-flagellation when I get it wrong, and better understanding my boundaries. There is a kind of moral here, namely that getting older doesn't mean you have all the answers. It also makes me question how well I have served my own needs by having stayed at the same employer for so long. Was I ultimately too isolated from the "real world"? No sense expending too many mental calories on that one, as the rear-view mirror examination is best used in very small doses.
For the record, trying to mentally back out of certain thought patterns is very, very difficult for me. For example, where I should be in life right now, I think, is working towards an eventual retirement. That's the big goal. I should be viewing what I do now through that lens, not the one where I over-examine in microscopic detail what I do every day.
Then there are the reminders every once in a while where the universe tries to re-focus your head. Recently, in my case, part of that has been a friend who is going through cancer treatment. Here I am wallowing in whether I cheesed someone off at work and this person is dealing with "the Big C". I readily confess, in a brief moment at work that I nearly broke down thinking about it. Sometimes "...universe tries to re-focus..." is just a fancy way to say "...dramatically unfair $hit..." (with apologies for the quasi-swear word).
I do sometimes wonder if I have reached a kind of existential moment in my life, with more questions about "why" than there are actual answers.
In any event, I am moving along. Part of that moving along involves my doing a better job at work of just focusing on task achievement...in other words, just trying to get some stuff done. Part of that, in turn, involves being less emotionally invested in things. I need to come to work, do my best, and leave work. I am learning (make that trying to learn) that I need to save the emotional investment for things where an actual emotional investment is more appropriate.
Re-reading the above, it seems like I have spent a few hundred words trying to say something that could easily be described in a single sentence. So I'll give that a try now:
"I am re-examining just how important my professional experience should be in the context of my larger life."
How's that? I know, all of the above is an incredible exercise in over-thinking. Maybe that's the point...and also the problem.
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On a more practical, non-internal dialogue note, I am officially fully vaccinated against the COVID-19 virus. I should probably feel more relieved than I actually do, but in all fairness personal worry about the pandemic hasn't been much of a driver for me over the past year. If anything, I worry more for others, including those who are more vulnerable to infection because of their health or what they do for a living. Here's to hoping that we, as a nation, have turned a corner in the fight against the virus.