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Tuesday, March 28, 2017

My Head Wants to Blow Up

Posted by Tim Stobbs on September 6, 2012

Ugh, what a week….so far.  While there isn’t any single cause for this in the last week I feel like my head wants to blow up.  I’ve got a thousand thoughts pushing through my brain as I try to remember to keep up on everything that I’m supposed to be doing.  Then when I do have five minutes to sit down I start to recall everything that I haven’t even started yet.  In summary: I’m overwhelmed this week.

Yet despite all of this I do take comfort in a single thought: my life won’t always be this way.  Unlike a lot of people with vague goals of I’ll retire someday, I know my periods of being overwhelmed won’t last since I can actually see the light at the end of my tunnel.  These perfect storms of things to do which pile high on my desks will pass, as I will in the next decade leave one of my desks behind.

I sometimes enjoy a brief fantasy in my mind of never having to book a meeting with four different managers and 10 other staff again (since you never find a time for everyone).  Of never opening my inbox after vacation and spend an hour reading emails only to realize that majority of them were pointless in the first place.  Of never being forced to sit at my desk at the end of the day for another 15 minutes even if my work is done because somebody with a higher position that me thought this is somehow productive when in fact I can’t finish any of my next tasks in that time frame. Of keeping my mouth shut about something for office political reasons when it goes against my nature to shut up.

This isn’t to say that I don’t like work, but rather I could live without some aspects of my day job very easily.  I do enjoy working on challenging problems or finding new solutions or processes which are more effective and efficient.  I do enjoy helping people though the tangled mess of regulations to realize their problems isn’t a bad as it initially seems.

So this morning I site here with my coffee and I smile: I have a plan on getting out.  So what do you look forward to leaving behind when you retire?

Comments

7 Responses to “My Head Wants to Blow Up”
  1. Jon_Snow says:

    4:30am alarm clock. I want to wake up when my body decides it is time to do so.

  2. greg says:

    So what do you look forward to leaving behind when you retire?

    Intransigence. There have been so many times people try to uphold a certain point of view despite very considerate suggestions from many others. Of course, there’s a balance where I’ll be willing to put up with a bit of it, but if I were completely financially independent I would have moved jobs or pushed back at least twice in the past few years.

  3. Jacq says:

    General feelings of the meaninglessness of work have come along more frequently lately. So I do like you do and try to find the meaning – or make one (like helping people, improve efficiency, learn a thing or two myself, be a good mentor…)

    But mostly I just want to sleep in a bit like Jon, have the time to exercise a lot more and put more of my efforts towards personal rewards where I can see the results. The angst is getting worse the closer I get. It feels like I’m deferring my life “until” this project is finished – only this one’s not clear-cut like some have been in the past. I suspect about 6 months off would do the trick since historically, that’s what works for me.

  4. CF says:

    Good attitude.

    For me, I get these feelings the most when I have a day off or a vacation or spending time with Brian on the weekend and I just wish that every day was so stress-free and enjoyable. One day!

  5. Devin says:

    I look forward to my agenda. Not the ones that have been mandated to me by anyone else. I look forward to the freedom that comes with knowing that I won’t have to owe anyone anything unless I choose to. I won’t have to do something unless I choose to focus on it and if it doesn’t get done oh well I only have myself to blame. I had a taste of that freedom when I took 6 months parental leave. It was amazing. I spent a lot of the time with my wife and 2 beautiful little girls. Now it is how quickly can I get back to that. The sad part is after I calculated when that will be I won’t be able to spend it with my kids when they are still kids. They will be in university and making their way in the world. At least my wife will have been able to spend the time with them. Single income family until both are in school. 5 years until by wife goes back to work and the plans change.
    As for your head blowing up. We all have that feeling at one time or another. Especially for people that like to help. We are problem solvers. There will always be problems to solve. Know which ones deserve our attention and energy becomes that hard part. I have had to learn to say no on the items that I can’t control or change in a reasonable timeline or with limited energy. I have also learned to focus my energy and communicate to others or myself that I can only do so much. I am not Superman or Hermes from Futurama. Most times other people are in the same position and it is a lack of communication of expectations and the ability to accurate estimate how long things will take. We are too optimistic. Find a pessimistic to balance your list. That or find a way to purge the stuff in your head. It does some of it naturally, but there comes a time when you have to spew everything onto something. I whiteboard, work document, piece of paper. I like to do it in the sand of a beach. The waves and time eventually erode them away. Some take longer than others and some disappear immediately. Sorry for the long response but I am currently in this process as well and it is very personal. Good luck and here is hoping you find what you truly are needing. Not necessarily what you are looking for.

  6. Kestra says:

    I actually really like my job, but there are two things I’ll be happy to be rid of: phone calls – I make hardly any phone calls – maybe one a day or less, but I’ve never been able to shake my phone anxiety. I just hate everything to do with phones.
    And being cold/lack of control over the room temperature, air conditioning, type of clothes etc. I’m not just comfortable at “normal” room temperatures, when I’m doing a desk job. My desk is too close to the vents for the crappy HVAC system and I literally wear gloves sometimes summer and winter, and long johns under my office pants pretty much 4-6 months of the year. Can’t wait to not be in Winnipeg in the winter.

  7. I enjoy my job but I also just graduated and my career is fairly new to me. Maybe that will all change in a few years, who knows. I won’t miss the 12-15 hour shits and as for office politics 1- I don’t work in an office so no issues there rather I work with a team with some great people. For the most part I do my own thing and no one bothers me so I can’t complain really. Sometimes we don’t see eye to eye but we work it out. I do look forward to travelling with my wife and spending more time on my hobbies when I retire. Mr.CBB

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