Vicious Cycles

So much for the New Year’s bump.

Things came crashing down hard last week. I know what prompted it. Last weekend I spent a lot of time doing things I didn’t care about, none of which will help my life and some of which may make it slightly worse. There was a photo shoot for a head shot for my job, which despite being at a cheap place was also over my boss’s budget, so there’s a chance that I’m going to have to shell out some cash for it. Then there was my volunteer shift, which took twice as long as usual because I was training somebody, and based on every bit of body language I would guess that she’s never coming back. And finally there was the fact that I spent several hours traveling to each of these places because where I live is not actually convenient to anything.

All of that sounds petty. (And I mean that literally because I am dictating this into my iPhone while I’m out for an evening walk in the unseasonably warm 36° temperatures.)

One of my great problems, unfortunately, is that I’m pretty susceptible to petty things.

It’s been that way for a few years. Over the course of a few months, I lost most of my support network, and I haven’t done a good job of rebuilding it. Some of that is just not having great skills at such things, and some of that is that the things I’ve tried either haven’t worked well or have worked just fine but aren’t really capable of being the kind of support network I would like, and some of that is the fact that I’ve been in a job-hunting-related limbo state for nearly all of that time and knowing that when a new job does come along, I’m almost definitely going to be moving.

The job I have now is also a big part of the problem, although it’s not really the job’s fault. I work from home, and without the kind of connections that I used to have, it’s incredibly isolating. In short, it’s exactly the wrong thing I should be doing right now.

The result is, when even petty bad things happen, there isn’t much to keep me from roller-coastering into doldrums of bad eating and minimal activity. The bad eating is the real problem; junk food tastes good, at least in its way, so at least something goes right that day, but it also makes the lethargy worse.

There’s an obvious block here that I don’t know how to deal with. The goals I have aren’t really that complicated, and the plan to reach them isn’t either, but it doesn’t handle slip-ups well, and being in a state of perpetual burnout from being in a bad situation makes holding off slip-ups hard.

I wish I had a good answer to this one. I mean, I do—fix the situation, which I’m trying to do, but which hasn’t happened yet—but an answer to how to cope in the meantime. Got one? Please share.

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