Sometimes work sucks.
You feel like you’re not making an impact or something isn’t going the way you had planned. Someone sabotages your meeting. Your ideas aren’t heard. You feel like you’re headed nowhere.
Frustration is exhausting. It puts a damper on things and suddenly you find yourself stuck in a sludgy, sticky bog of defeat. You care less and you’re less excited about what’ll happen next (or maybe not excited at all). In a nutshell, you’re in a funk. Not the good kind of funk.
I’m an impatient person and I’ve been in many funks before. I expect a lot out of myself and the people around me, and while you’d think I’d learn to be patient after many funks, it’s just not in my nature.
My remedy for funkiness:
Have a full life outside of work.
This may seem like an overly simple idea but in reality, it’s not. Having a full life outside of work is a huge challenge when you’re a person who:
a) likes to throw themselves into their work
b) has a long commute
c) has a pet
d) has a partner
e) has family to visit
f) has no car
While I only have a) through e), having passions outside of work is, quite frankly, a lot of work. It means more driving, less sleep, and less time to cook dinner. It means leaving your room in shambles because you’re just trying to keep up with the things you love.
Every Monday, I drive two hours to and from work and then 30 minutes more for band rehearsal. I always dread the drive and I’m sleep deprived the next morning. But even though I’m sleep deprived, I feel a hell of a lot happier because I spent two hours playing, singing, and dancing to music. I poke fun at my horn players. I make faces at my bass player. I close my eyes and feel the energy of 15 people who came together create beautiful sounds.
Whether it’s music or friends or painting or soccer or bowling or LAN parties, outside of work passions are worth the sacrifice. They may make you sleep deprived and frazzled, but they’ll keep your heart happy and they’ll give you a fresh perspective on work.