Feb 16, 2012

Gimme A Break!

The cat is supposed to make me look like an evil guy like in the movies.
In the winter, the days often seem to tend toward what I think of as Belgian skies.  I'm not sure if what I've been told about the weather there is true, or not, but it is often overcast, is what I hear.  And we've been having those days.  I believe they're called Stratus clouds, but I could be wrong.  Anyway, that sort of unspectacular, featureless day is fairly representative of my life these last few weeks, so you've not heard much from me on this blog.  I just haven't been feeling very inspired.

Not that I suddenly have experienced a burst of inspiration, but I did want to check in and say 'What's Up' to my bloggin' homies.  So what's new?  I also wanted to say thanks to those who responded to my last post about aging.  I've gotten over my little breakdown, thank you very much.

Maybe that's where I'll go with this blog entry.  You know the strange thing?  I started to feel better when I

allowed myself to quit.  I chatted with a friend, who shared about all of his hobbies.  How they keep him busy, balancing time between each of them.  And it made me realize that I have- for whatever reason- the emotional and psychological make-up to get obsessed with one thing.  I was telling Kathy earlier this week that I was proud of myself because I figured out that I didn't have to choose between doing every dish in the house (plenty) or reading the book I was trying to finish.  I could DO BOTH.  I'm sure that sounds hilarious as some sort of insight to those of you who are gifted in that way, but for me, it was a profound realization.  I've always pursued (perhaps because I was subconsciously pushed?) that laser focus sort of thing.  Always thought it was so true that if you were a jack of all trades, you were a master of none (you can see how masterful this has made me, but that's another thought entirely).

So it comes quite naturally to me to obsess over bicycles and cycling and everything to do with them.  But even when I feel burnt out on riding or internet browsing about them, or whatever, it's not easy to realize that the obvious answer

Here, here!  Sounds like good advice to me.  From Mt. Auburn Cemetery...
This absurdly pretty picture is from www.Rivbike.com
is to simply switch to some other interest.  In other words, DO BOTH.

But you've read enough about me.  I really do want to turn the corner to ask, what is it that you refuse to give yourself a break over?  Where do you need rest, but refuse to give it to yourself?  In these economic times, many people are working as many hours as their employer will give them, simply because you really don't know what will happen tomorrow.  I was talking to someone yesterday about what small business was like:  it basically means you're NEVER done working.  Because for many of us, we are harder taskmasters for ourselves than any boss would be.  The athletic version of this is that many professional athletes say they constantly worry that they haven't trained enough, and thus end up wearing their bodies out rather than being optimally prepared.  This is called overtraining, and there are symptoms for it and everything.  Certainly not my problem, but I can sympathize with it.

Laugh at me a little if you must, but learn from me.  Just because you feel burnt out with a part of your life doesn't mean you have to give it up forever- you can simply rest.  Sometimes the best thing for these athletes is an injury that forces them to rest.  It's why you'll sometimes see an athlete get injured early in the season and do very well later on.  But the principle applies to so much more than sports. 

Give yourselves a break.

1 comment:

  1. Nice post. I was often told by my folks that bit of wisdom about the jack of all trades. They were afraid I never could stick with anything. In many ways, perhaps most, they were right. In my case, ADD made it hard for me to have a real choice (though we always have choices). So I've tried to turn a negative into a positive, thus "Hey, I am a freelance writer, and I know a lot about a lot--but not everything about one thing."

    By the way, that stone picture got me thinking about gravestones. That could be part of a great one.