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"It was really weird. Your voice changed and everything. It was extremely uncomfortable." —Connor DeLaney
Yes, Connor said this to me this afternoon. You see, we were talking about what we do to relax. I shared that one of my favorite "this sparks joy" activities is process-building. So, I showed him this new Trello board I had built for IMPACT'svideo sales and marketing strategyproduction pipeline:
It has 18 columns and color-coding and reminders and templates and resources and stage-based checklists and...sigh, it's just so stinkin' beautiful.😍
In Connor's defense, me awkwardly pawing at the screen may have been a bridge too far. But while he and I didn't bond over my deep (and disturbing) love for building processes, we both agreed that we love being alone for no reason other than... well, it makes us feel refreshed and happy.
Still, not everyone gets that. In fact, sometimes our need to be alone hurts the feelings of others.
Maybe it's just in my head, but do you ever feel there's a weird friction sometimes between what youwant to doand what you feel you'resupposed to do?
I want to spend time alone, but I'll hurt someone else's feelings. Just thinking about the conversations I'll need to have to get that "me time" is exhausting.
I want to be totally open about something I love and brings me joy, but someone else will think I'm weird. (Ahem, Connor.)
(Meditation/running/crossfit/fill in the blank) is not enjoyable at all for me. But when I say that, people don't listen. They just tell me I need to try harder or stick with it or whatever. They're wrong, but I'm tired of arguing about it.
I used to think these things a lot. Eventually, I'd cave and forge ahead with whatever action I deemed to be the path of least resistance.Usually, that meant avoiding immediate confrontation at the expense of my individual needs.
Today, it's a much different story. I tell people when I want to be alone, without expressing guilt or seeking permission. I awkwardly fondle Trello boards in front of unsuspecting coworkers because, suck it, my processes are dope. And I don't try to pretend I enjoy crossfit or running.They're both awful.
It is so freeing. And, as a result, I'm happier than I've ever been.
What changed? I wish I could say I had some profound moment of growth. But really, the stresses of the pandemic made me tired. Too tired to deprioritize my needs anymore.
We're all stressed, though. We're all working crazy hours trying to cobble together new strategies, methods, and processes in the face of a truly wild and unprecedented set of economic and social circumstances.
Now is the time to stop deprioritizing yourself.Start advocating for what you need. And please, I beg you, give yourself permission to put you first for once.
Those whoreallycare about you will understand and support you.
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