Here I am, it’s a Thursday morning, and I feel like I’m walking back into my office after a looooong painful holiday. That statement is partially true because I actually was away for the holidays, but the painful part is because upon my return, I came down with the flu. I did manage to make it into my office a few times, but I couldn’t do much that was worth anything (as you can see from the fever-induced ramblings of the post directly previous to this one), so I eventually gave up and went to bed for a solid week.
One good thing about being sick (yes, there is a good thing that came out of this) was that I was not distracted by the fun and activity of Twitter, Daily Designing, and emails. Instead, I was forced to basically lay there like a knot on a log and think about things – well, when I wasn’t sleeping or groaning… or other fun activities that I won’t mention here.
Here were my two major realizations:
1. I am not necessary.
This one was hard. On Monday evening, when I finally got well enough to stand longer than 10 minutes at a time without falling over, I went downstairs to check my email, which I hadn’t seriously looked at in almost 3 weeks.
I didn’t have any.
When my husband came home from work, I put my head on his shoulder and whined that nobody needed me anymore. I’m the kind of girl that doesn’t feel worthy unless I’m doing something for someone – I love to help. Getting paid to do that is just a bonus in my book.
Of course, he had to joke that I “did tell everyone [I] wasn’t working anymore…” and what else did I expect to happen?
Harsh. But true.
2. I have no clue what to do now.
By nature, I am a frazzled being. My husband says I’m a genius because of this. (There’s some saying that Leonardo da Vinci rarely finished anything he started, and was always into new stuff – my husband says that describes my personality perfectly, and by definition, that makes me a genius. I have a good husband! He’s wrong, but so sweet!) I love learning new things, trying out new adventures and walking down new, unknown trails. I’m a bit of a timid hiker – I don’t go dashing madly into the depths, but rather timidly peek around corners to be sure things are okay – but I still love doing it.
Because of my natural, inquisitive and adventurous nature, I tend to not care about what I’m getting into, and what I’m leaving behind. I just “go with the flow.”
Now I’m on this sabbatical to get organized, and channel the flow a bit to my needs, rather than riding the river without a paddle. And I have no idea where to being. I fell into this career, and I love it passionately – but it’s taking me over, and I never started where I should have started – with a plan.
So now I am lost and unnecessary. However, I’m using these two key points to try and straighten myself out. Although I’d love to be “necessary” on the level that Chris Brogan, Collis Ta’eed, Matt Mullenweg and Eric Meyer are, I don’t think I could stand the limelight So I’ll be fine being necessary on an acceptable level – to the few that select me to be so.
Now I need to make myself a map so I can get there.
In the next few weeks/months, you’ll see this journey progress. I will be delving into the unknown (and scary) depths of productivity, learning new tools, business planning and organization – as well as life/work balance. I’m positive I will stumble and make errors. But the end result is to be better, and make myself necessary to my clients and colleagues, not only to better my own life, but theirs as well. Hopefully the things I find that help me along the way will also help you in some way, so you don’t get as lost as I do.
Because I am nothing if I cannot help someone else