Being Anxious Saved Me From A Worse Disaster For Once

I’ve been busy with getting ready for a trip. I’ve known about the trip for a while, but with everything else going on this past year, I couldn’t afford to spend time and energy on trip preparations until this month. Now, as the final weeks count down, I’ve had to systematically prepare myself in a situation where I don’t really have that much room for delays or procrastination. Unless I wanted to give myself a truly awful final week before the trip, I needed to methodically work through everything in a timely manner. Thankfully, I’m good at getting organized, so it was incredibly easy to come up with a broad to-do list and then sort tasks into a day-by-day order that would still leave me with time to rest so I wasn’t burning myself out before the trip. Unfortunately, everything blew up pretty much immediately when I lost an entire day to discovering that my flights had changed and the agency I booked with not only hadn’t notified me, but didn’t even seem to be aware that anything had changed when I started digging into it.

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Trying To Actively Fix My Burnout

I’ve been battling burnout for years now. I was driven away from my last job because of the demands placed on me and how all my work was punished because it didn’t fall neatly into the metrics my new manager used to rate my performance (despite how my old manager had approved of and supported my work). My new job was better for a while, but years of dealing with one of the most difficult people I’ve ever met and a great deal of institutional indifference to new ideas, modernization, and change in general have slowly ground me down. Since it is a slower process, I’ve been able to work to counter it, but there’s only so much to do when you’re also in the middle of a pandemic and the economic system you live in is doing it’s best to extract every single penny it can get from you and people like you. There’s no time to rest, little space to get a breather, and almost no ability to create either one of those since the only thing that will let me potentially escape in the future is working as much as my health will allow me to. It is not a great situation to be in, honestly.

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You’re Probably Going To See A Lot of “No New Infrared Isolation Chapter This Week” Posts This Month

Life is, once again, kicking my ass. I’d like to say that I listened to my friends for once and decided to take it easy rather than continue to work through the stress, exhaustion, and series of incredibly demoralizing events involved in the past five days, but I genuinely just have not had time or energy to do anything, no matter how much I’d like to. Work has been busy, life has had a series of unfortunate events for me (nothing emotionally destructive like most 2023 prior to last week, thankfully, but it has still been a lot to process and work through every. single. day.), and I’ve been struggling with depression again because of all that on top of returning sleep struggles. It has been a pretty miserable and unredeemable week only made manageable because I’ve been getting a sense of accomplishment (and utter mental/physical/emotional exhaustion) from my day job, so it’s been a bit easier to go without all the writing I normally do to get that.

Anyway, if I keep going too long here, it’ll turn into a full post and the whole “do less so I don’t hate myself, my life, and the entirety of creation” thing I’m trying to do will have failed, so I’m gonna go. Have a great weekend and get some rest. I’ll be doing my best to do that while also attending to the million other things I’ve got to do this month… No real rest for me until April, unfortunately. Who knew international travel took so much preparation?

Taking A Day To Rest After All That Bullshit

No new Infrared Isolation chapter today. If you want to know why, you can just read yesterday’s post. Dealing with the folks who inspired that post, in the days before writing that post and the days following it, has drained me of pretty much every bit of extra energy and willpower I had. So I’m skipping today and just trying to desperately rest in hopes of breaking out of this continuing spiral of awfulness that has been my experience of 2023 so far. Honestly, there’s not much left that can do sour or bad, so hopefully it’ll stop before much longer. In the meantime, I’m going to play Minecraft, as much Splatoon as I can manage, and then try to enjoy a game of Star Wars 5e with the remaining members of my TTRPG group.

Fresh Burnout and Emotional Exhaustion

After an incredibly exhausting start to my year, things are starting to calm down. All of the major events that showed up in the first weeks of this month have passed and I’ve had at least a couple days where very little has happened. Additionally, I went to my most recent session of family therapy, reflected on how it had gone for a few days afterwards, and decided that it would be my last. It was only a single hour every week, but it took up a disproportionate amount of my idle thoughts and most of my active ones as well, so I’m looking forward to thinking about things I enjoy again, such as my various writing projects, fun video games, and the other aspects of my life that I want to work on to improve myself rather than attempting to lead my parents toward growth. Hopefully I will have a chance to rest and recover from everything that’s been going on so that I can once again enjoy myself rather than continue the staving off of misery that I’ve been doing lately. And while I have made little progress on any of my major worries for the rest of 2023, I’ve done what I can for now.

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A Fresh Can of Whipped Stress and Chopped Anxiety on This Burnout Sundae

I’m really starting to think that I am, in fact, cursed. Every time I take a vacation from work, something happens immediately after that vacation ends that seems to completely destroy all of the rest I got while away from my job. This time, it didn’t even wait that long and then doubled-down. I had an anxiety attack that lasted a few days, wrecking my sleep for most of my second week away from work, and then, when I had finally recovered from that (so much as I can in less than a week) and went back to the office, I wound up with a whole pile of emotionally draining and difficult events scheduled within a thirty-two hour period. All of which felt incredibly trite and inconsequential after I learned of some awful news impacting a dear friend. The first two weeks of 2023 were one hell of a start to the year.

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Saturday Skip

I’ve barely had time to even eat dinner this week, I’ve been so busy and absolutely exhausted, so there’s no new post for today. I’m working (slowly) on the next chapter of Infrared Isolation and I’ve got a poem I wrote a couple weeks ago ready to go in case I don’t get that done, so there will definitely be something new next saturday. I just don’t have the energy to push out even a regular blog post for today, so I’m gonna focus on resting up. Hopefully the next week will be a bit more calm and less busy for me.

Post-Nap Confusion And Peak Ambient Stress

I had the misfortune of taking a nap today. It was not a long one, thankfully, but I woke up from this accidental time jump incredibly disoriented and completely disconnected from reality. It fell at the cusp of my transition from work mode to post-work-writing mode, as I took a break to sit on my office’s couch. Since I’m working from home this week due to being under the weather and wanting to avoid spreading this respiratory bug around the office, I usually take some time to move away from my desk, do something else for a little bit, and then return to my desk. Since I’ve been ill and exhausted lately, I’ve barely had the energy to do anything after work and have thus developed the habit of just sitting down on my couch under a blanket while some music or a podcast plays and I sort through post ideas in my head.

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Dark Mornings and Depression Coping Mechanisms

I’ve been struggling to stick to a schedule lately. Well, specifically to the timing part of it. I’ve still done all of my stuff every day, I just haven’t really been doing it on what I would call my preferred timetable. Which has had the unfortunate side-effect of really disrupting my sleep schedule, bedtime patterns, and mental well-being. It’s a complex issue since there are a few reasons for it, most of which are valid and difficult to argue with, and all of the problems I’ve encountered exist only in the practical application of this altered daily schedule rather than the on-paper version I’ve been trying to argue with this entire time. It has been going on for a month or more at this point and the roots of it can be traced back even further, but now I’ve taken the time I need to work through the actual problems and have arrived at a proposed solution that might just work for me.

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Midweek Check-In

This upcoming weekend is my first weekend off in what feels like months. It has been long enough since I’ve had a weekend without commitments that I would have to carefully backtrack to figure out when it was and I’m currently too tired to do that, which means it has definitely been a while. I also technically don’t have zero commitment this weekend, either, because I’ve got three or four tabletop things planned (four if my Friday group meets), for a grant total about ten hours of tabletop gaming. More than half of which I’m running. Plus, most of my “relaxation” plans for this weekend are about cleaning my apartment since I haven’t had a chance to do much of that lately. Not that I’m living in filth or anything. My kitchen is clean and my bathroom is as clean as most bathrooms ever get, but it’s been a long while since I’ve done anything other than spot dusting and vacuuming. So I’ve got a lot more going on than pure relaxation this weekend.

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