Career, Health, Life, Uncategorized

A Type A Control Freak’s Path to Serenity

Before I begin, there are a few things you should probably know about me:

  1. I organize my underwear drawer. After removing my clothes from the dryer, each pair is carefully folded before being placed in the appropriate pile based on style, fabric, and color.  Yes. My underwear is organized by color.
  2. My bathroom trash can is for aesthetic purposes only. Should you choose to use it for actual garbage, it will be emptied almost immediately.
  3. I have five email addresses, each containing a minimum of 50 labels into which I organize the multitude of messages I receive throughout the day (for those of you who don’t use Gmail, think of labels as folders).

The reason I share these points is to attempt to illustrate the plethora of systems I have built in an effort to organize my everyday existence, systems that should be regarded as observable manifestations of my larger obsession with stability. Yes, it might sound a bit neurotic (because it is), but I have been operating this way since I was six years old and searching for the perfect way to display my stuffed animals.

Recently, I made the decision to venture out on my own – a choice that is riddled with instability. Bi-weekly paychecks? Health insurance? A 401k? With this one decision, they instantly became things of the past. Hours became varied and unpredictable (likely to fluctuate in tandem with my emotional state), and it’s no longer possible to define myself by my job title or salary range.

You would think that my Type A personality would be vehemently protesting, that every atom of my being would be screaming for me to create order out of the chaos – but it’s not. Yes, my aforementioned systems are still in place, but for the first time in a long time, I feel genuinely at peace. I’m enjoying the quiet that comes to my neighborhood after 9:30am. I’m reveling in the freedom to choose my own projects, to partner with innovative minds from other industries. In a strange twist, these seemingly inconsequential options have overrode my need for control – enough, at least, that I know how important it is for me to explore it further.

So here I am. I am bound to encounter a multitude of threats to this newfound independence, but I have made the decision to prioritize my own happiness, and through any means necessary, I will preserve this state of serenity.

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Career, Life, Uncategorized

Life’s Too Short For the Wrong Job

A friend of mine has this theory that most of the human population adheres to the 9 am – 5 pm daily grind out of a sense of necessary punishment. In other words, we are committed to spending time we don’t want to spend working in a place we don’t want to work doing something we don’t want to do because that’s how we pay our bills… That’s how we survive.

I, like many others, fell into this trap. I worked a job for two years because I was afraid that if I left, I would lose my rent money, my health insurance, my 401k and therefore, my peace of mind… My question to myself, and to so many others, is what kind of life are we living if the majority of our time is spent doing something we don’t want to do? Was my mind really at peace when I dreaded having to get out of bed in the morning, counted the hours of every workday, and dreamed of the vacation days that I somehow never ending up taking anyway? Pretty obvious answer… No.

So I finally did it, I quit my job.

This past Tuesday, somewhere between waking up and reporting to work, I made the resolute decision that it was time to leave. I walked into my boss’s office, gave notice, and sat down at my desk with elation and excitement electrocuting every inch of my body. And I came back to life.

So hi. My name is Alex, and over the next few months, maybe years, I anticipate a good deal of volatility, some really fabulous life experiences, and many moments of paralyzing fear. Most of all, I look forward to learning to live life on my own terms and with my eyes wide open… most of the time.

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