Archive for career

Don’t Count Your Eggs Before They Hatch

A lot has been happening in my life.

I’ve had a lot of really exciting opportunities for which I’m incredibly thankful, but I’ve also had many potential opportunities that fell through. Sometimes they fell through based on my inability to do the work, sometimes it just wasn’t the right fit and sometimes it was no fault of my own and extenuating circumstances got in the way.

Starting out, I would get overly excited about these opportunities. They would spark an excitement in me that, frankly, was hard to contain. When they fell through though, I would be crushed.

Experience has taught me better than to count on something like that for any measure of success and self worth. The truth of it is your self worth doesn’t depend on what you’ve accomplished, although you can be proud of yourself, self worth comes from within. Read More →

You Can’t Force Things to Happen

It’s been tough getting to sleep the last few nights.

I’ll go to bed and turn off the light and then the thoughts start pouring in. I’ll worry that I didn’t do the right thing in any number of situations during the day or I’ll worry about the work I have to do the next day or I’ll worry that no matter what I do, I’ll never be closer to my dream of buying a house in the mountains.

It occurred to me last night while I was lying there though, that you can’t force sleep. If you try to fall asleep and see that you’re not, that’s just one more thing to worry about. The sleep will come, it always does and there’s no point in trying to force it to happen.

The thought then occurred to me that that notion is true for a lot of things, love, success, peace and life in general.

Read More →

What To Do About Burn Out

We all know what it feels like when you’ve had enough. It’s that listless weary feeling of not wanting to proceed but knowing that you have to.

Some refer to it as ennui others simply call it burn out.

It happens when the stress of performing a certain task overrides its enjoyment and it can take place in every facet of your life, from your job, to your home life to your relationships.

Many people have trouble with burn out when they feel tired or obligated about something. The truth is, everyone has things they might not enjoy doing but are required to do to maintain their current life situation. Read More →

Balancing Stability and Ambition

For years I’ve been balancing on a tightrope, swaying this way and that while I reach for bigger and better things on the one side, but am knocked down by increasing symptomatic concerns on the other.

That’s the way it is when you have a mental illness.

On the one hand you want to achieve, you want desperately to earn more money so you can get off government assistance, so you can move out of your section 8 apartment and so you can see a private psychiatrist but your illness doesn’t allow it.

For every step toward financial stability you make, you take one step into behavioral and emotional instability.

You want independence, but that independence comes at the price of forfeiting your mental stability.

This has been the one overarching struggle for me in my efforts to get better. Read More →

Trying to Handle The Stress of Obligation

I’ve been having some burnout recently. There was an article in Inc. Magazine last week that discussed a study showing that burnout might actually be depression. Personally I’ve found that to be true in small components.

With burnout there exists that same level of apathy and exhaustion when faced with impending tasks and deadlines and the same hopeless feeling that what you are doing isn’t getting you anywhere.

These are minor though, as I view depression as a serious manifestation of these issues as well intense sadness and suicidal ideation and I feel like I have a good handle on what separates the two having experienced both.

What I want to talk about today though is the point at which you experience burnout but can’t take steps to remedy it because it causes stress.

Stress is not a good thing for people with mental illness. I’ve talked about the light switch effect wherein too much stress automatically flips on paranoia and delusion regardless of the steps you take (medication/therapy) to combat these things. Read More →

Trying to Succeed as a Person With Mental Illness

As a person with schizophrenia, it’s all too easy for me to get caught up in the flurry of trying to make money, trying to be successful and trying to get an as-yet undetermined place in my career where all my problems will be over.

I’ve been stressing myself out on the daily trying to jockey a better position either for my writing or photography, and as we all know, stress is not good, especially for a person with mental illness.

I’ve talked about the lightswitch effect wherein a compounding amount of stress is the lightswitch for symptoms to flare up. I’ll get worked up and then I’ll get paranoid and then I’ll get delusional and before I know it I’m taking another trip to the U.N. thinking I’m a prophet.

The point of all this is to say that it’s way too easy to lose yourself in the ambition of trying to succeed.

People with mental illnesses have to be extra careful in that regard. Read More →

Be Generous and Be Grateful

It may be obvious that I’ve been on a long search for contentment. Or more Ideally happiness, though I know happiness is momentary and isn’t supposed to be long and sustainable.

Anyway, for the last few years I’ve been working myself like crazy trying to make enough money to improve my situation in the hopes that once I was able to do so I’d find a relative peace and comfort with my situation.

I thought it was about standing and money and where you lived and all the myriad ways people trick themselves into trying to find happiness.

It occurred to me though that I’m already really really privileged.

I have enough money to go out to dinner and have a couple beers. I have my own apartment and I have two computers and an HDTV and a really nice mattress. I have a family that loves me and I have several close friends who have my back. Read More →