The beauty about vacations of any kind is that they give one plenty of time for reflection. Sometimes, what one discovers may not be the most pleasant, but isn’t that how one grows as a person?
|I chose Option B in 2011. No more.|
2011 was not the best year for me professionally, and that trickled down into every single aspect of my life. In the end, I lost myself. Those facets of my personality which define me were drowned in my unhappiness at work. My work suffered, my house suffered, my family suffered, and I suffered. I am thirty pounds overweight, out of shape, and still struggling to recover from the bronchitis that felled me in December. I turn 36 in 2012. I cannot stay like this, not if I hope to present a good example to my children on healthy living.
I kept commenting all year about how quickly time was passing. One of the things I realized these past few weeks is that time was only flying because my head was buried deeply into work. I can honestly say that I missed most of the year because I was never, ever truly present in any moment. This lack of presence even migrated into this blog. Looking back at posts over the year, That’s What She Read became too business-like. I realize now that all reviews and no fun posts make Michelle a dull blogger. I became so focused on review copies that I started looking at them as work assignments rather than as a pastime. This is not who I am and this is not why I started blogging. Let me just say that it is a truly horrible way to live one’s life.
These past two weeks have been so important for me. I have been able to take a hard look in the mirror, and I do not like what I see. I see someone who needs to reconnect with her likes and dislikes and take back all aspects of her life. It’s time to stop working 10+ hours every day and get back to the gym. It’s time to spend time focusing on my family and not obsessing about the office. It’s time to inject more of my personality back into this website and stop concentrating on reviews only. It’s time to cook more, exercise more, relax more, and live more. I’m ready. Are you?
Thanks, Amy! I'm taking it one day at a time. That's all I can do, right?
I'm sorry it was such a tough year and I really hope that your 2012 is better. Stress definitely colors everything, so it's understandable that work has taken over. Good luck!
My recent post Review: Swing Low by Miriam Toews
Thanks! It is one of the few things I truly dislike about living in America – this type of "work ethic" is applauded and rewarded. No wonder we have such problems with obesity, depression, and unhappy families.
2012 is definitely going to be a better year!
Thanks, Megan! And the same to you!
Oh, I so hear you about letting your job run away with your life, reading review copies like it's another job (that's also running away with your life, LOL), and the overflow of all that lameness into one's blog. I feel like I saw some of each of those things in my life and my blog this year, and I'm dying to (and hopefully already starting to) turn it around by letting myself be me on my blog more often and trying to leave the stress of work at work.
Here's wishing you a 2012 that is a refreshingly different year full of good things!
Thanks, Care!! Just give me a proverbial shove if I forget, okay?
Thanks, Becky!! Ellie Krieger's plan says to take it slow, eh? I will definitely have to check it out!
I definitely do not need a second job. LOL! Taking care of myself is my number one rule this year.
I'm so sorry you've had a rough year, but I hope that you can turn everything around in 2012! Wishing you happiness, joy, laughter, and good health in the new year!
Wishing you a soul-affirming, life-enriching, laughter-full 2012. Be kind to yourself, OK? 🙂
Yay for more fun! Sometimes we need to remember that this is a hobby and hobbies should be FUN! You do not need a second job. And definitely take care of yourself. That's job #1.
My recent post Year the Fifth
Thanks, Natasha! Things can always get worse, so I really am trying to consider myself lucky on that front. I'm with you on a year where everything goes right!
Thanks, Carrie! I think it is going to be a long road back to health and happiness, but I'm willing to take it.
In my head and heart, I know that. I just forgotten to live by it. 2012 is going to be a much better year. I can feel it!
Here, here!! 2012 is our year!
Thanks, Kathy! Yes, I was just pleading with my husband to let me quit my job. Unfortunately, that isn't going to happen, but I have taken steps to try to get a new job first. We shall see!
I'm so sorry that it's been such a hard year for you at work! And it is easy to let one aspect of our life bleed over into everything else. I admire your resolve to do something about it. My health is an area that I am also hoping to address in 2012. I pray that you will have a fantastic year!
My recent post Mailbox Monday – January 2, 2011
What a honest post. It's so easy to get caught up in the work aspects of our lives and put the things that make us happy on the back burner. I wish you all the best in 2012. I hope this is the year that everything goes right. 🙂
My recent post Sunday Salon: Happy New Year!
Family and personal life should always come before blogging. Here's to a happy 2012.
2011 has been stressful and I, too, am looking forward to a more peaceful and calm 2012. My stress is personal and not so work related but I like your phrase of not living in the moment. I feel like I was constantly looking to the past or to the future — not where I was. Here's to living in the moment!!
It's easy to get caught up in the stress of work, especially when you know your family depends on your income. I wish you much luck in de-stressing in 2012.
Thanks, Beth! That is exactly what was happening. The sad part is that it is so insidious that you don't really realize that it is impacting you as much as it is until it has caused so much damage to your loved ones and to you.
Stress is the worst … I know (for me) it pulls so many important things out of focus, and one of those things is the experience of joy that should come in daily living. Wishing you a more balanced and stress-free 2012!
I'm joining you on the exercise and relax more program for certain!
That is exactly what has gotten me into trouble recently. In fact, my (horrible) boss went so far as to go to HR about my suffering performance and all of the "errors" I have been making. (I could insert a very snide comment about the fact that my boss is willing to take credit for all of my good work, which far exceeds my mistakes, while throwing me under the bus on the two or three key mistakes I've made throughout the year…but I won't.) I'm tired of letting work dictate my life. We can definitely break the mold together!!
I am having the same problems at work for the same reason I am never truly present in the moment. My mind is on the next task before I hit enter on my current project;resulting in backtracking and redoing work. It is a mess. Last night I realized perhaps if I get back to doing some of the things I enjoy, cooking, learning about wine or just listening to music I might slow down and enjoy the moment more. I read your tweets this morning about your poor night of sleep and apprehension about going back to work and really feel for you. I agree with the comment you left on my post – lets make a pact to really stick to our guns this year! We can do it.
Thanks, Natalie! Tomorrow will be the big test to see how easy it is going to be to make the much-needed changes. I need to do them, but you know how it is. A light at the end of the long, dark tunnel would definitely be a step in the right direction.
I am already eclectic, but I definitely want to be a bit more creative and crazy. I agree with you on only accepting books that fit into what I enjoy. I definitely want to whittle down my TBR pile because they already fit that category.
When work is stressful, everything else will definitely suffer. I experienced the same in early 2010 and it was really tough to get out of it. But, once you realize it, and can make the necessary steps to change things, it becomes a little more hopeful (hopefully!). And you're right, when things become all professional and no fun on the blog, then it really becomes like a second job that is just another source of stress. And we all have too much of that in our lives!
I made a decision to be a bit more eclectic on my blog this year, a little more creative, and only accept books that fit into what I enjoy, and then choose from my own TBR or the library for my books. Makes things a lot easier that way, too.
My recent post Announcing The Stephen King Project 2012