For context, I started this blog post on March 1 of this year. It has sat in my drafts for over 4 months as I spent time to myself and figured some things out. I have felt pretty lost for the majority of 2020 and it seems life doesn’t want to give any of us a break as we all have been hit by wave after wave of despair and the unknown. But I decided to not edit the portion of this blog that I had written 4 months ago to help reflect how much has changed in just a short amount of time. ✨
MARCH 1: For the first time in over 4 years, I am only working one job. February 29 was my last day working at my second job and it feels liberating today.
I am, by all definitions, a workaholic. My mind needs to stay busy and productive, so working multiple jobs came fairly easy for me (after adjusting to different work schedules and whatnot). Now, while I identify as a workaholic, I was not working multiple jobs solely for that reason. When I was in graduate school, I was working at an advocacy center during my internship year to gain therapy experience, but I had to also keep my full time retail job due to my internship job being unpaid. Even after I graduated, I kept both jobs for about a year. I eventually quit my unpaid job for a paid therapy position, but held on to my retail job out of security and comfort. At one point last year, I was working three jobs. I had two different therapy jobs, as well as my retail job.
JULY 11: During that time, I didn’t fully realize the impact working so much was having on my mental health, my personal relationships, and my overall outlook on life. I was so unhappy, but I had been unhappy for so long that it felt “normal.” I remember telling myself that my life baseline was contentment. Life was neither good nor bad, and I was going through the motions. Looking back now, I was not content. I was tired. Worn down. Burnt out. Bored.
When I went down to working one job, I honestly struggled. I struggled to feel productive. I also found that my own self-worth was plummeting but I couldn’t pinpoint as to why. During one of the many crying-fests I’ve had this year (2020 is not playing around, y’all), my fiancé told me that my entire being is centered around my career. I had no identity outside of work at all. Who am I if I’m not working 80 hour weeks?
I’ve been working 40 hour weeks at one job for the past 4.5 months now and only recently have I started to find myself again. How did I find myself, you may ask? I looked through old photo albums of life before my career. I found a bucket list that I had created 10 years ago and started to add to it, while also being able to scratch off some experiences. I went to a bookstore and found my love for reading again. I let myself get lost in fiction novels. I stopped isolating myself in my bedroom and started spending more quality time with my fiancé. I reached out to people that I had lost contact with. I started to eat more mindfully and limit indulgences. And lastly, and maybe most importantly to me, I started writing again. I have many blogs in my drafts because I wanted to wait to start posting again when I felt in a positive mindset to do so. Writing is such a vulnerable activity and it takes courage to put your heart out into the world, but I feel ready to take that step again with The Healthy Mindset Project. 🌻✨