the sixth day of “work” staycation

The morning went well, but I lost my hope for success in the afternoon again. Being a naturally skeptical and highly critical person, especially towards her own, I am not surprised with this.

I work, work, and work, and only a small fraction of it goes into “recognize me” bin. All these efforts, careful and meticulous work, time, energy, and deals with stress I put into this work seem to wash away and bring me from all the way bottom to all the way top, the feeling of being inadequate. Its pain and heaviness are inescapable.

I wish I could retire. I do not want to say that I wish I was old enough to retire – I have a life to enjoy and explore still. I want to fully immerse in it before it becomes too late to do whatever I can do with my healthy and able body and mind. But nothing makes me feel more remorseful of having only a little amount of money saved, which prevents me from even thinking about retirement.

They say education is great and a must, and what an education I have had. I have got a PhD degree, worked in four different countries, did countless of interesting work. Yet it was not only after 36 that I could get a job with benefits (including pension plan) and only after 38 that I have got a job with a decent salary. I want to ask; where is all my knowledge, skills, and experience now? Obviously while my efforts, tears and sweat have benefited many organizations, countries, and people (for which I am actually happy), here I am at mid-40s struggling with the idea of leaving a job that constantly makes me feel low, stressed, and unappreciated. Where are the benefits of all my education and capabilities when it comes to me?

Low self-esteem should be broken by all means; nobody is as “low” as one can think. I cannot do this in my case, however. This has been like this for years, fueled by my current position. I competed with many talented individuals to come all the way here and here at this position I am not capable of going any further. I cannot blame others or the conditions, but I cannot blame myself, either. I gave my best and countless numbers of hours and brain cells to this work over the many years. I cannot take this feeling anymore.

I want to believe that even without attaining the level of success I wish for myself, I still can and do great work. I know many people at my position going through the same struggle, and even performing less than me. Yet, they are good at standing, talking, and walking tall, in contrast to me. My own hardship on myself, my own expectations from myself, and my own frustration are the ones that drag me down in my own eyes and then in others’. I sometimes think that this job is more about mental stamina and confidence, however false it can be, than having the capabilities, skills, and excitement for creativity, quality, and effective work. I lack that stamina. 

I once had told another colleagues of mine at administrative level that I was more of a manager than a leader; I get things done. He was understanding and said that “….a leader is great, but a manager is even greater. Leaders open the way and develop the ideas, vision. Managers are the ones that make it reality….” How great is that?

I am affected by the lack of effective leaders at my organization as well as the lack of transparency, trust, and presence of lots and lots of silos. I need a leader that can open the way for me and provide me with better resources so that I can soar. Yet, nauseating truth is that I am supposed to be a leader of myself and do all of these. Nobody is going to care about my conditions, needs, or improving my morale. It is all on me.

I wish I could just stop resisting this frustration and accept myself as a failure to find some kind of peace and perhaps identify new paths to explore and move forward, but I am not capable of doing this. I have either a competitive nature that I am not consciously aware of, some kind of hope that does not go away and keep pulsing in my mind, or I am in fact better than I think I am. Not necessarily awesome, but just better. Whatever the reason for not accepting myself as a failure is, I am not sure whether I am grateful or not. What I know is that my time did not arrive yet, so I will keep going, even under harsher conditions. Eventually I will figure out how to make “lemonade”.

Lemonade GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY

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gif by:https://giphy.com/gifs/lemonade-5iwNC4HSKztfy

 

 

 

joy journal – May 31, 2016

1. I am grateful for getting up this morning. I was tired and got stressed right away about work, but at least I have had a restful night.

2. I am grateful for catching up the bus. It was kinda late but so was I 🙂 so it worked out just fine this morning 🙂

3. I am grateful for my coffee and the new water jar I have. It is such a beauty 🙂 one of these types where it actually looks like a glass jar with a handle. It is not only fun to have around but is also very healthy. I used to drink from an old plastic water bottle… Pew – glad that it is gone!

4. I am grateful for working two hours with quite an intense focus on a document. It drained me but at least it is taken care of 🙂

5. I am grateful for leaving my office for home to keep working at home without distraction. I was tired yet still walked. My work at home went well too but after a while I decided to stop and take a break. I am almost exhausted and this is not a good feeling. I need my energy and mental clarity and focus to finish my stuff in the coming two weeks.

6. I am grateful for eating relatively healthy today.

7. I am grateful for not eating too much today 🙂

8. I am grateful for relaxing the whole evening by watching a TV series and reflecting on the positive things in my life. It helps me to feel better and like everyone else I deserve to feel good 🙂

9. I am grateful for the quiet environment and neighborhood, which makes it easier to take a rest and relax.

10. I am grateful for not using my reading glasses. They tire my eyes quiet a bit )or by reading all the time, I tire my eyes myself…). I need the glasses at the office but at home, I usually can manage without them. This is good and helps with relaxing of my eyes.

11. I am grateful for water! what an energizing and rejuvenating drink! 🙂

12. I am grateful for being calm and having confidence that I will do my best in the coming weeks and will finish things as much as possible. even though I cannot finish everything,  I will be fine with this, knowing that I really worked hard to finish my work 🙂

13. I am grateful for being invited to review a document for a national organization. That is a sign of my national recognition as an expert and I find pride and excitement in this 🙂 I also deferred the deadline for my report a month or so, so that in case I cannot finish it prior to my vacation, I will be able to submit my record after I come back from my vacation.

14. I am grateful for declining to review another report I was invited to review. This time it was an international organization that I had helped in the past. It felt good not to spend time on this task, even though the recognition felt really good. Ironically, my work has more international recognition than a national one. Thus I get more excited when I am invited by a national organization than when I get excited by an invitation from an international one. Weird… I guess we all crave for attention from somewhere we do not get it 🙂

15. I am grateful for my floss 🙂 it works all the time and tells me how my gums are doing. In the last few weeks, my gums have been really healthy (they did not bleed while flossing). I am so happy about this 🙂

16. I am grateful for my job that has flexible hours. It would be better if I had stayed in my office as people talk and to them me not being in the office would mean not working. Only a bunch of people who feel like me and prefer the undistractive home environment to work can understand this. Luckily, I have many people like this around and it feels good to have this support and flexibility.

17. I am grateful for my salary and benefits that make my life affordable and somehow secured.

18. I am grateful for my computer, internet connection, useful websites, and the blogs that I keep reading and learning from 🙂

19. I am grateful for being content and grateful, and having the energy and time to write my joy journal 🙂

if you ever need to undergo a surgery alone

if you ever need to undergo  a surgery alone, I want you to know that you are a strong and determined person. You will handle it to your best. And when you leave the hospital, however tired or weak you may be, you will know that you have done an extraordinary thing. Be proud of yourself – you way deserve it.

it is gonna be okay, I gotta say

I want to lie down tonite

feeling sick, as if something is coming

a bug, a tiredness, something

no tea, no soup, no nothing

is gonna make it better

just need to lie down

warm and silent

under a blanket

lights dimmed to help my eyes

rested and my body and mind

feeling contemplations

it is gonna be okay, I gotta say

holding my own head

checking my fever

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Go ahead, make yourself tired real good for once!

I am mad.

I know someone, who for his work travels a lot. A LOT. In the last few weeks I am not sure how many states he has been to, often with flights as little as 12 hours apart. Now he says he is about to board a trans-atlantic flight.

Since I am not comfortable talking to him, but I do care about him, I will say it here. He may not know what I think, but at last I have this chance to get it out of my system.

Go ahead, make yourself tired real good for once!!! Get burnt out. Get cold. No heart attack or a serious issue, but something manageable. Maybe you will stop killing yourself. Maybe this time people in your life will, instead of clapping, talk to you out of hurting yourself for your career.

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