I just recently learned a valuable lesson. When to say UNCLE. I mean, when you know that you’ve just had enough.
Last month was a doozy. A lot happening at work, was recently promoted so trying to figure out what that means and entails. Then planning next steps to continue growing professionally. I also had a lot going on in my personal life. A very close friend was getting married, I was in the wedding party. Dynamics between friendships and relationships were morphing – in short life was happening.
For me it was all a bit too much. Every day waking up and having to process the surface level day-to-day things and then dealing with the ramifications of assimilating that into who I am. All while trying to stay true to what and who I have come to be, mostly trying to avoid getting swept up into the noise. It was a giant growth spurt and trust me, those hurt more than the pain in your kneecaps when you’re 7 years old.
Finally, one Wednesday afternoon, I had the smallest thing go wrong on a project and that was it. Typical Whitney would have just said “c’est la vie.” Totally-and-completely-emotionally-overwhelmed Whitney beelined it to the bathroom and proceeded to try every mini-meditation available to stop the urge to cry and curl up in the fetal position.
That’s when I did it. I sent an email to my higherups and said “I’m taking a day”. I felt so guilty. I don’t take time off, unless I’m sick as a dog, even when I take vacation time I feel guilty. This was just my own emotional bagage, it shouldn’t effect my work. My work is sacred, it’s my favorite thing. I need and love my work. Turns out, when your beyond emotionally fried your work is effected (who knew?) Luckily I work for a company that values work/life balance and they were very supportive.
So I took a Friday off and slept and slept and slept. I had never let myself turn off like that, I didn’t respond to texts, didn’t check my email. My boyfriend was the only person that was in my life for those 3 days. Had I thought he would have caused me any angst at all I wouldn’t have even allowed him in the house.
Moral of the story – IT IS OKAY TO TURN OFF.
I think as millennials we don’t understand the point of turning off. We can handle it all because it’s all on our phones. We can add reminders, make a note or respond to a text or email a bit later. I also believe that we don’t understand that the world will STILL be there if we cease to post on or check Facebook for 3 straight days. It will all be ok. I promise. So I challenge you, even if you’re not at the point of a complete emotional breakdown, (like I was) turn off your freaking phone, try it for 3 hours. I dare ya.
It’s refreshing. Oh and you’ll also have PLENTY of things to see on FB when you turn that darn thing back on.