Life Self-Employed

Sorry for the accidental hiatus last Friday! Last week was my first full week of DOING MY OWN THING and the days sort of got away from me. First, I took a four day vacation (something I never do) to see friends, then I watched my adorable baby niece, and then… I just worked. In my first week full-time massaging, I did 12 massages. Which felt like a pretty good confirmation that– It’s all going to be alright.

But– I am doing pretty badly about the whole schedule thing. I thrive on schedules. So I have been going to bed at a decent hour and waking up… never. Why is waking up so hard? How do people bounce out of bed with hours to spare? The constant rain recently hasn’t helped, either. It all feels like time to nap for me!

I’m not sure actually how to get out of this. I’m working and doing those sorts of things, but things like… say, cleaning my house, or mowing my yard… well, it’s getting left behind in only the way it can with me sleeping on my couch.

I think one of my solutions is coffee. (I mean, what? HOw could that be a solution?) Hear me out. I normally didn’t drink coffee at home on my days off before. A day here or there without coffee, well it hurt, but I could manage. But I AM up early every morning for kitty breakfast and I think I need to just start throwing coffee down my throat at that point– no going back to sleep for me!

But more than anything, what I’ve been reminding myself today is to give myself grace. No name-calling. No chastising. No hating on myself because I was extra tired or didn’t get the yard mowed before it rained (again). Things will come. Schedules and routines will be built again. Yes, I need to put in effort towards that. But when I have a day when it all seems like a failure– that’s okay! I just needed that time off.

Back to getting things done– how do you self-employeds do it? How do you wake yourself up? What is your motivation? What names don’t you call yourself?

Friday Five– 017

The long-awaited last week of employment– here we are! I am officially (as of Friday) not really employed anywhere– eep!

This week, I’ve taken it easy, got to hang out with my baby niece all day Tuesday (#auntielife), got a massage, and generally freaked out just slightly.

  1. The Parent Trap (circa 1998) was easily in my top five movies as a kid. The fashion holds up today.   (Abbi, what were your top five? Well, if you insist… Probably ANYTHING Mary Kate and Ashley Olsen, Milo & Otis, Chicken Run, The Parent Trap, and the Princess Bride)
  2. What do you unnecessarily spend money on? Mine is on food– or, going out for food. I hate cooking at home, or at least tell myself I do, mostly because I wait until I’m “too tired or hungry” to wade through a recipe, so I order out (Grubhub is both my best friend and my arch enemy). Anyways, I’m eyeing unneeded expenses and hoping to cut down. Wish me luck!
  3. By now, everyone knows Humans of New York– I still wanted to share this story. The power of SSRIs, social media, and friendship.
  4. I’ve spoken recently about my anxiety and the habit of rehearsing. This article gives some good tips for “over-thinking” which is kind of the same thing? Anyways, I’ve kept a few pages in my BuJo for gratitude and that has helped a lot (tip 6), but the biggest thing for me is to recognize the pattern and step out of it.
  5. Take small, determined steps to get yourself in a better headspace— start with making the decision, then go from there.

 

Happy Friday! I’m headed north for a long weekend– to spend with friends in celebration of birthdays and my freedom!!

Friday Five- 016

This week was slower paced. I had every single evening free– and really didn’t know what to do with myself! I painted for a friend (trim and doors), I planted all of the plants I’d been gifted by my mom and aunt, I napped. It was… nice.

  1. I love this article about parenting in France. Really, I have no idea what parenting is like here in the US, but this is just really intriguing to me.
  2. Melancholy is my jam— I think, like this author, I feel happiest when I’m just a bit blue. And, reiterating what she says– not in the way I feel when I’m in a depression slump, but just a nice, casual blue day. It’s lovely and cozy and I think helps me access some of my heavier emotions without getting too bogged down. Give me a rainy day, any day.
  3. Take a break before the breakdown— I did this last weekend. Even though I probably could have gotten a few more massage appointments in last Friday, I instead scheduled an entire day off for myself– and did NOTHING. It was exactly what I needed, and lent itself to a slower-paced weekend which, in turn, helped me gear up for a few more weeks of madness.
  4. Hola, Tres Leches! Gracias, Joy the Baker!
  5. Another food one. Because nothing says summer like caprese salad!!

This weekend is a whole different pace than the week was– my office took home Office of the Year (for the fifth time in a row?) so we’re celebrating tonight, complete with a stay at a charming BnB and brunch Saturday morning! I think I’ve been prepping for it all week, ready to go hard!

Happy Friday, all!

“How are you feeling about it?”

I’m leaving my office job, I’ve talked about it here before. Next week is my very last week. For the first time in nearly 5 years (just 2 weeks shy!), I won’t be employed there anymore. I was telling my friend this yesterday, and after a bit of chatting, he asked “how are you feeling about it?” And I told him, quite honestly “well, really good– until I just told you about it!”

All of a sudden, the anxiety came crashing in. I’m a creature of habit and comfort. I like knowing, I like schedules, I like routine. I like being good at a thing.

And stepping into the unknown is scary. So scary. Especially as I don’t have all the pieces in place yet. So my anxiety is growing– I’m having trouble sleeping, my heart keeps racing, and I’m falling into the familiar thought patterns I call “rehearsing.” This is my brain’s way of trying to cope– I go over things. I go over schedules, I go over plans, I go over all the things I need to do, I go over how I’m going to do them, I go over all the near-misses. Over and over. Anxiety growing. Pre-medication, this is how my brain operated about 90% of the time. It’s exhausting.

Stepping away from this job is the right thing. It’s the right time. I’m ready to spend my time and effort on my own dreams. I’m ready to create my own life. But it’s so scary.

I know things will work out. I know change takes time. I know things will fall into place. It’s just trusting that it’ll all fall at the right times, which are often just a little bit further away than I’d like. So this week (and probably next), I’m doing everything I can to keep calm– deep breathing, lots of rest, lots of distractions, lots of journaling, and even CBD oil.

Wish me luck and happy thoughts in the upcoming weeks! Change is hard, ya’ll!

Friday Five- 015

Not sure how everyone else is feeling this week, as I’ve felt a bit disconnected and withdrawn. I’ve been running so hard recently that this crash of a week was bound to happen. I’m taking Friday off this week– my first WHOLE DAY OFF in quite a while. But sometimes, you gotta… Listen to your hearts, ya’ll.

  1. I’ve been on #TeamLiveAlone for 6 years now. I’ve learned these lessons and so many more.
  2. Busy busy busy? You may be avoiding something. What could it be…?  Take a minute, read this article, then think about it– what are you avoiding?
  3. Oh Dear Drea is the blog I’ve followed the longest, since back before I really understood what a blog was. I’ve enjoyed watching her life change and her kid grow, even if they really are all strangers. In this post, she had some good musings about travel and not having to love every spot you visit.
  4.  Do you have trouble saving money? What are your techniques for improvement? Personally, I have an app that functions as a basic ledger (checkbook) and I keep things in “accounts.” While this money is all actually in the same account, I can move things around on my app (and in my head) and into specific things I’m saving for or emergency funds. It’s like I’m hiding money from myself, which honestly– I sometimes need.
  5. If you live in Indy, do yourself a favor and swing by Shapiro’s Deli this weekend. Every time I go, it’s like rediscovering a hidden gem. It’s like I forget how great it is every time– until I walk in again. Dear Shapiro’s, I promise to stop forgetting how wonderful you are.

Ironic that I talked about how busy I’ve been, but then posted a link on how busy isn’t all that great? To be honest, I’ve never been a busy bee. I love taking it easy and having days off. It’s just this transition time, which I’ve talked about before. I’m working hard with a foot in both worlds right now, trying to make my dreams work by moving forward (while finishing up the old stuff). Two more weeks and I’m done at the office. I’m ready, I think. But still very freaked out.

Happy Friday.

Friday Five- 014

What a hot, sticky week! This week, I celebrated Independence Day inside in air conditioning, picked at a leftover stars and stripes cake, and ate Hotbox Pizza to my heart’s content. What I’m saying is– I’ve been living my best life.

  1. I have definitely used this recipe for pesto because I don’t have a food processor and I wanted to know if it was possible (answer: duh, we’ve been doing this for a long time). Also, just like my mama, I made lots of substitutions. Lesson learned: do you. Chop like crazy. Cooking has been around for longer than kitchen gadgets and “must haves.”
  2. Mac and Cheese is my go-to comfort food. And now there’s a scientific reason why!
  3. This is probably my favorite thing I’ve read all week– a listing of first dates. Don’t read if you’re squeemish about dating and/or human sexuality. I’d love to make a list like this someday, but I think my first date stories are just boring. Not terrible, just really, really dull.
  4. What other people don’t get about living in America
  5. American Life, experienced in a variety of ways. I love hearing stories, it makes me feel so connected to others. I’m thankful for those brave enough to share their “outside the norm” life.

Here’s to rain and a slightly less-hot weekend! I have plants to plant, sunshine to enjoy, and a deep desire to not melt in the heat!

What I read in June

Young Jane Young, Gabrielle Zevin

YJY

Rating: 4.5/5 stars

What I liked/didn’t like: I loved the timeliness of the story, the story from the women’s points of view, and I really liked a lot of the characters. There wasn’t much I didn’t like about it, except that I wanted it to continue.

Exit West, Mohsin Hamid

EW

Rating: 5/5 stars

What I liked/didn’t like: I loved the melancholy of the book, as well as Hamid’s prose– there were just some really beautifully written sentences. I won’t say a lot about this one, it’s one you’ll have to read for yourself. But I’ve recommended it just about everywhere I could, if that says something. May not be a light, summer read, but it’s a quick read.

 

Difficult Women, Roxane Gay

DW.jpg

Rating: 3.5/5 stars

What I liked/didn’t like: Difficult Women is a collection of short stories, all from a different story or perspective. I laughed, I cried, I emailed Roxane Gay to tell her how much her writing impacted me. There were some weird ones that I sort of breezed through, there were some that I sat the book down and ugly cried for a while. Relatable women, unrelatable women, I learned something, I felt something.

Despite the heat and the call for summer reads— I read some heavy ones this past month. I think they hit where I was emotionally for me as well as providing a release (there was a lot of crying…) I’m doing better, and I’d like to think it was in part due to some of these reads. After all, everything you read becomes a part of you…

(ps– Honorable mentions go to Why Not Me? by Mindy Kaling and In Cold Blood, by Truman Capote, both of which went back to the library unfinished. I may pick them back up at another point, but in June, they just didn’t work for me)