The last few weeks have been full of activity both at work, personally and the world in general. I’ve been pretty maxed out on inputs for quite some time. I’ve struggled to find time for much of anything other than work and dealing with the onslaught of inputs that seem to be coming at me from all angles. And so I find myself taking time simply to relax & process. Without it, I will be out of margin.
What & why do I take time to process?
I’ve found that if I don’t intentionally set time aside for some mental & emotional processing, I will find myself feeling completely overwhelmed. Eventually I get to a point where I just can’t handle “all of it” because it’s all just too much to the point where “it” feels like this single, overwhelming thing pressing down on my chest & making my brain feel full & numb. If I don’t take time for processing, I can begin to believe that everything is bad when it’s really not, there’s just a very high number of things all happening at the same time. Basically it comes down to I process so that I can be a useful, functioning member of society instead of a shell of a person barely hanging on by my fingernails.
And what do I take the time to process? Well, anything and everything that’s causing me to feel mixed & conflicting emotions. For the past few weeks (and I’m sure this one will continue) I’ve had a lot to process about my new role at work. I’ve been a project manager for a very long time and now I’m managing project managers. While really exciting, it’s also somewhat overwhelming because I have yet to fully transition my projects so I’m managing my existing projects, teaching someone new on my team & new to the company to manage one of my projects, and managing a team of eleven project managers. Thus far, I’ve managed to keep up with things, but it gets to be a lot and it will continue till I’ve transitioned my old role to someone else. And I’m overwhelmed. At the same time, Husband is struggling with some really complicated, political things going on with his job. It’s a very complicated situation and we’ll get through it, but in the meantime, it’s exceptionally stressful for both of us. And then there’s the world. All the news focused on negative things around politics. It’s so rare that anything positive is reported. A prime example of this is The Piano Guys. Normally they’re my source of external positivity. And even they have had tragedy in the last couple weeks. The whole situation there just leaves me feeling so disillusioned because bad things shouldn’t happen to such good people. And yet, their response is such a wonderful example of the type of people I wish we had more of in the world. But the world has just lost one. And then on the personal side of things, we’ve both got grandparents who have recently had some medical scares. It’s been rough on our parents and by extension, rough on us. And there really isn’t anything we can do to change the situation.
So what do I do? Well, I’ve learned that I need to allow myself to feel however I’m feeling, even if those emotions conflict. How I act on those feelings is different than acknowledging the emotion & allowing myself to feel it. So we’ve intentionally set aside the last couple weekends, even turning down invitations for dinners out so we can just be home, with each other to do the things we need to in order to relax, allow for mental & emotional processing, and prepare for the upcoming weeks ahead so we don’t go into a new week running close to empty.
How can we all do more of this?
What are some things in your life that you haven’t taken time to process? How might some scheduled, intentional processing time help you (and others around you by extension)? Why do you think it is that we don’t take the time we need?
Maybe if we could all put less demands on ourselves & each other, our world would be a better, less overwhelming place to live. When will you take your next mental & emotional time to recharge?
Wishing you an All+SUM LIFE,