Wednesday, December 28, 2016

At Years End

It's been a long and strange year.

I worked way too much. We had what amounted to being the perfect storm at work. We had three major projects, all on tight timelines, all with hard deadlines, all driven by external forces. I had the lead role on one of the projects and a key secondary role on another. Between the two of them but they ate much of the year.  The level of work stress was nearly unbearable. But, here it is the end of the year, the last of the projects is coming to a close, and it looks like I'm going to make it.

That workload had cascading affects into my personal life. One of the things that lives in the nature of what I do, project management, is that a lot of it is intellectual work. You spend a lot of time thinking about what is going on. You cannot turn off that level of thought, that depth, that complexity. Even when you're not working your brain keeps working. Sometimes consciously and sometimes unconsciously.

That is where the cascade begins. You start to shave off the corners of your life one tiny sliver at a time. You skip dinner here. You skip coffee there. You miss first this get together of your friends and then that one. Before you know it you're so show map resembles a small town more than an urban Metropolis. That's where I found myself about three quarters into the year. It wasn't a pleasant place to be.

Now, I'm in eternal optimist and I'm basically a happy person. Neither one of those core traits changes. Even through the tough times I'm a happy optimist. But that level of readjustment in social contacts does have its impacts and I felt them.

In addition to them this year had several other key social hits that took a toll. I won't enumerate them here mostly because of my rule about taking other peoples business onto the street. Don't do it.

So I'm kind of stumbling out of the year in a state of borderline exhaustion. But that optimist in me is looking forward to the coming year. Perfect storms only happen rarely so work wise the coming year should be far more graceful. I've spent the last week contemplating what different actions I'm going to take next year and I've got a good rough sketch of what I need to do. Wish me luck.

May all beings know happiness and be free from suffering.

Sent from my iPhone