You know those work weeks that just seem to suck every last bit of energy, enthusiasm and creative impulse out of you? Yeah, I had one of those weeks. After 5 days of navigating corporate politics and an unnecessary game of pointing fingers, I felt completely burnt out. Yesterday I left the office at 8pm, made a sad attempt at a run around Lake Calhoun and ultimately plopped myself in front of the TV with an embarrassing spread of Chinese takeout. I’m even more embarrassed to admit that I was in bed and sound asleep by 9:30pm.
Thanks to my early bed time, I found myself wide awake at 6am checking work emails. As I obsessed over one stressful project in particular, I flipped to Instagram and stumbled onto the below post from one of my work mentors –
Being successful rarely feels like it. Tonight as i’m being recognized as a member of the “40 under 40” class in MPLS it will be the end cap to a few weeks of feeling pulled too thin, of feeling wildly unsuccessful, of a few tears, of losses, of certainties of not being enough. It will also be a night in a larger story that includes wild successes, of watching the talents of others grow, of smiling so wide with pride it hurts, of giggling with coworkers, of reaping the benefits of a lot of work and trust and belief and confidence.
It’s a real shitty thing to not feel enough. It’s a shittier thing to wallow in that feeling and not embrace the good that comes your way, and the good you create. So, tonight I’m going to celebrate with those close to me, and thank them for the unending support and the reminder to keep getting better. To work hard, to stay humble. This is success, this is what it feels like.
Within a few minutes, Erinn reminded me that these bad weeks, the weeks when you don’t feel enough, happen to everybody. And they don’t subtract from the overall good you bring to the table. In that light-bulb moment, I closed out my inbox, jumped out of bed, picked up The New York Times, made a kick-ass cup of aeropress coffee and turned on my favorite Beatles album. I realized that for me, these burn outs come from a complete investment in the needs of those around me without stopping to ground myself in the things that make me happy and make me, me. And I can tell you – sitting here, soaking in a few of my favorite simple pleasures is absolute bliss. Work will have to wait until Monday.