Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Scratching my 2012 itch

Since returning from London on Saturday the 14th, I've felt really itchy about something…

This time of year, mid-January, has always been an interesting time in my world. I often feel compelled and inspired to dig deeper, grow and evolve. It's at this time of year when I feel like I really gravitate towards making change, taking risks and seeking out the missing parts of my perfect equation. I can look back on past journal entries from January of 2009, January 2010 and January 2011 and a very common theme emerges - I want to cut out the noise and start following the voice of that best version of myself.

I'll be the first to admit that I sometimes suffer from the 'grass is greener' syndrome. Things would be better if only…I try to be really aware of this and realize that discontentment is just part of my DNA. I have to work harder than a lot of people I know to be present in my life and to feel like life is fulfilling. I'm a perfectionist and I am often left feeling like I could have done more, been more, seen more and felt more. 

My personal life is A+++. I am gleamingly happy at home. Kristin and I become more solid each day. We are a team who are completely in tune with each other. We dance in our living room. We bake dog cookies. We snuggle on the couch. We call each other names like "porkchop face" and we talk about what we want for our future. Cooper is our greatest gift of 2011 and he brings us an incredible amount of joy, responsibility, balance and laughter.

I am blessed with close friends whom I adore and everyone in my family seems to floating through life with minimal amounts of 1st world problems. I am mostly committed to eating well, running, stretching, yoga-ing and meditating. I am making time to write (like right now!). The only thing I wish I was doing more of personally would be making more time for fun with friends. It feels like it's been a while since I've had one of those nights that you will remember forever, but wish you could pass on the hangover ;) One of those debaucherous nights needs to happen soon...

I do, however, feel like there is a very important piece of the puzzle missing in my professional life.

One area that I am really struggling with right now is the environment in which I work. It feels like it's the missing puzzle piece. My work environment often leaves me feeling frustrated and less than inspired. It makes me feel very curfuffled (is that a word?) and distracted. You see, I am one of those people who has a slim separation between work and home. And fittingly so as the line between the two often has me tripping over a dog or rinsing off the dishes. Work and home for me are the same place, and I am beginning to come to terms with the fact that, after 3 years of having it this way, I am NOT a big fan and it needs to change.

I have an incredibly difficult time spending my days working from home because there are so many distractions abound. I can unload the dishwasher, I can take Cooper for a walk, I can watch that episode of Modern Family I missed, I can check facebook, I can throw in a load of laundry etc, etc, etc. Hell, I can get away without showering until 5pm if I really want to. That's not cool. Not that I succumb to the distractions everyday, but I always feel procrastination pulling.  

I've also found myself really craving daily human interaction. People give me energy. I like having someone to compare my efforts to. I like having someone to bounce an idea off of. I like being able to ask a question and not having to open a new email message in order to do so. 

Having a place to be has always made me better. It infuses my willpower and helps me be way more productive. 

I remember back to being an athlete and realizing that willpower wasn't always my strongest suit. I needed to set myself up for success in this realm. Here's an example: If everyone was away on the weekend and I was the only guy left in town, I would do the right thing and get the key from my coach so I could go in for a weekend training session. I would make a plan, I would go to bed early, I would eat a solid breakfast, but still, no matter my efforts, if there wasn't someone else there, I always came up short of executing my plan. I just couldn't hold myself accountable to it. Now, on the contrary; If I had a coach there, even if they weren't in the gym with me the entire time, I would complete my plan and execute it diligently. I wouldn't leave until every 'i' was dotted and every 't' was crossed. I came to realize that a part of me craves validation. I need someone to notice when I am doing good work. I need someone to acknowledge my efforts. This fuels me and drives me - always has and always will. I thrive when I have accountability and a reward.

So, I feel like I need to inject some of this into the 2012 version of me. I need a place to go. I need a space where I can focus on my professional projects so that I can appreciate the time I have at home. I need to be around other people who are creative and trying to make an impact. I like having someone to compete against and someone to bounce ideas off of. I want to be a part of a team. I don't like to be micro-managed, but I do appreciate having someone check in on me from time to time and recognize my efforts. This helps me hold myself accountable and to stay committed to doing great work. 

In order to scratch this 'working environment' itch, I know it's up to me to create a new landscape. It needs to be made a priority and I'll have to make an investment of some kind - whether it be money or time or even discomfort for the first little while. I still need to investigate some options (I have a couple of very appealing opportunities in the works), but whatever it is, I'm prepared to do it. Stay tuned for developments ;)  

No comments: