If you know me, you know I’m a fairly positive person by nature. I love planning, and I love setting goals. I have no problem setting a goal and working until I achieve it. I’m proud of my accomplishments, and appreciate all the people in my life that help me reach for greater things. The past year, and the year about to occur- have been /will be full of long days, overbooked schedules, amazing highs, rough lows, new and familiars, and time flying like never before. I’ve had many moments where time seems to pause for just long enough for me to realise that I am exactly where I want to be, and I am on the right path. Then the universe hits fast forward again.
I seem to lose my remote quite often, leaving me stuck in fast forward majority of the time. Which quite often causes me to get really pumped up about something, and then have a day or two where all of a sudden things just seem impossible and all my plans collide- leaving me surrounded by the carnage and wondering why I ever thought any of that was possible.
I’ve lived majority of my life this way; so whether it was the concussion I had last June- or just my life picking up speed in a new way, the past while has seemed to hold more of these “holy s*** what am I even doing right now” moments. Alongside many of the personal goals I’ve achieved, I’ve had equal parts anxiety, doubt, depressed moments, and mild terror. You can’t have highs without the lows, right? I usually get through these moments by repeating “everything will work out..” to myself for long enough to chill. Oddly enough, things usually do work out. Which only gives me the energy to get myself into more trouble…
Most recently the cue for that collision feeling was loosely deciding on pursuing graduate studies, something I’ve toyed with for a long time. Having this idea come up again during the first week back at school, around the same time as running my first functional training class, a 30hr work week, trying to figure out if I was going to be able to afford or have time to train and compete the horse I’m trying to market this year, and starting work on summer internship applications, would appear to be the perfect time to consider another couple years of education- right? It started out exciting and now has turned into having to remind myself over and over again to slow down (which I’ve gotten really good at).
Back in September, when I was going through many of the same feelings of being constantly overwhelmed- a friend suggested I make a list. A list to prioritize my time into sections: what I really needed/wanted to focus on, then things that would help me achieve those goals, and finally things that I didn’t necessarily need in my schedule. Okay, if I’m being honest, the middle section I added in because I didn’t want to give up some things. But still. I’ve never been a list-y type of person, but this actually helped me put things into perspective. At that point in the school year it was either learn how to prioritise things or have to listen to my doctor who was telling me I should be taking a year off school to recover from the concussion.
So how did a salesman in Superstore inspire this? Last Monday while I was perusing through the aisles, I was approached by said salesman who gave me the super riveting pitch on their mastercard. To which I politely listened to (seriously, I’m the worst person to get stuck with when someone is trying to sell something- I always end up listening..), and then politely told him that I had applied for that card a while back but had been declined (#storyofmystudentlife), to which he responded that this time Superstore was desperate so they were sure to accept me.
Okay, sure. So began his detailed intake of information, eventually leading to the career section and him asking what I do for a living. I replied that I worked at a gym.. “As a trainer?” he asked, “Well, training to be a trainer I guess”. Fast forward to him finishing my application and then pausing before leaving and asking some more details about what I was studying to be. Cue “what is athletic therapy” speech from me. The reply I got from him surprised me. After listening intently to what I was doing with my life, he looked me dead in the eye and said:
“You will be good at that. I know that sounds ridiculous coming from someone who has only talked to you for 5 minutes. But, that job will require you being able to communicate with people from all walks of life- and from our interaction I can tell you thrive on that. All you need to do is give yourself time. You will graduate, and have a great career and be happy. Its true. I know too many people who rush through their education to get jobs that only bring them down, and are never truly happy. But you, with time, will do well. Just give it time.”.
After that he wished me luck, with the credit card and with my life, nodded his head… and disappeared.
Seriously, that actually happened.
So, after standing in that aisle completely confused as to what just happened for a few minutes, I proceeded about my shopping and pressed fast forward again for the rest of the week. After attending a graduate program open house Tuesday, running from one job to the next in between classes the rest of the week, and working/running/working/working out/studying all weekend- I was and am starting to feel pretty overwhelmed again. I have a lot going on. I’m still not very good at picking what I want to focus on, so instead try to do it all. Or at least combine it all somehow.
Those words from Monday came back to me in the middle of it all. My Superstore Buddha stuck in my brain, reminding me that I have time. Reminding me to make an informal list, even if I don’t make cuts to my schedule, that at least I know what I would cut if I wanted to. It doesn’t completely banish the overwhelmed feeling, but it does serve as a reminder that I’m at least considering patience instead of a meltdown. That’s a step in the right direction, right?