Wednesday, March 2, 2011


{photo from here}

After my wonderful trip to Austin, I returned to work and got some upsetting and disappointing news.  I learned that my awesome/amazing/inspiring/beautiful/kickass manager ("M") resigned because she got offered an ah-mazing position that she couldn't turn down.  When she told me, I nearly burst into tears (I have a flair for the dramatic, I know), but I just couldn't believe it.  On the one hand, on a very personal level, I will deeply miss her.  In some ways, I think of her as another big sister, someone I look up, aspire to and respect.  On the professional level, I am disappointed.  We made a lot of big plans for the upcoming year, and with M's guidance, I was confident that I would learn a LOT this year and advance my career in the best ways possible. 

Needless to say, I've been sad/worried since last Thursday.  Turns out, professionally this could be a really good thing for me.  With M gone, I will be working with and reporting to one of two Heads of the Department ("H").  H is incredibly intimidating (she didn't crack a smile my entire interview, not until the very end) and quite demanding, but she's also really good at her job.  It will be tough to be without my amazing teacher, but I have the potential to really step up my game and prove to H that I can go above and beyond my title.  And that's exactly what I intend to do.

This week has been nuts, and things are only going to get crazier when M leaves (next week - tear).  Leaving at 5:30, lunchtime gym breaks and leisurely days are out the window.  This is undoubtedly going to be hard on me.  For one, I'm determined to work out 5x per week, and that's going to be tough to do with consistent late nights at the office.  For another, I was looking forward to having some more flexibility/freedom with my schedule now that training is over and to try and actually hang out with my friends on a regular basis again.  When can I squeeze that in?  Gym or dinner/drinks... something's gotta give.  (On top of all that, my work schedule makes getting to WW meetings - aka Tues. Night Happy Hour - impossible, and I think I'm going to switch to online only.  Sigh.)

I chose the picture above because I need to see it.  I haven't been feeling beautiful lately - I've been feeling fat, ugly and repulsive.  I should be proud of my body for what it's just accomplished, but instead I only focus on what it can't do.  I'm hoping that my plans to keep active and eat (mostly) clean will help me feel better all around. 

How do you maintain work-life balance when things are crazy and show no signs of letting up?

How do you remind yourself that you're beautiful (no matter how unbelievably unflattering your race photos are)?


Valerie @ City|Life|Eats said...

Wow, that is a lot of changes fast. I am really curious about others comment as those two questions are totally two things I struggle with.

Re: maintaining work-life balance - I don't know if I have such balance, but one thing I am adamant on is that no matter how stressful life is, I stay on top of eating healthfully. Being stressed out is so much worse when I don't stay on top of eating healthfully - I just don't feel as good, which contributes to being more stressed out. I also have a new approach to working out/yoga/meditation - I call it the mind/body goal, where I have to do something every day - whether it is 15 min meditation or a yoga class or a workout at the gym. On a stressful day a mile long power walk in sneakers is better than nothing. Yesterday I did nothing, but Monday I did both teh power walk and a workout at the gym, so I cut myself a break, but I would have felt better if I had gotten in a 15 min meditation. Still, something every day is a good mentality for me. Micro-steps, right?

Anonymous said...

For work/life balance, it helps to remember that nothing is forever. Work is important to you right now. It's important for you to get things done. So right now it's going to take a lot of time.
But don't sacrifice your well-being for it. When you get really stressed and find yourself working more and more, ask yourself, can I do this tomorrow? Can I do this more efficiently somehow? Will being exhausted tomorrow help me finish this? Work has to get done, but it won't get done well if you're worked to the bone. Like Valerie said, make time for yourself and always think about how your choices affect you.

Race photos - everyone looks terrible in them. It's 5:30 a.m., you're sweating in no makeup and exhausted. No one looks good. Just let it go and focus on how it felt, not how it looked.

Anonymous said...

Work/Life balance is tough - especially in a new position where you are still trying to prove yourself. What worked well for me was to make boundaries most of the time. Some days/weeks, it was impossible due to the scope of the work, but the majority of the time, I made sure I made some hard boundaries and stuck to them. I ALWAYS worked out in the mornings, I know it sucks to get up that early - but I felt so much better knowing I would have a workout in and if I had to stay late at work, I wouldn't be choosing between my health and my job. I also made sure 2x per week, I got off work at a reasonable hour for some "me" time - whether that was another trip to the gym, happy hour with friends, vegging in front of trashy TV or whatever, I forced myself to leave the office no later than 7 pm and to only check my iPhone work email if there was an emergency. The other thing I always did (again, unless there was a huge looming deadline or lunch meeting) was take a lunch. I would always get at least 30 minutes away from my desk to clear my head and take a deep breath. I think maintaining a balance made me a better employee, so nobody ever complained about it.

Race photos are always unflattering. I never look at mine. Ever. You are gorgeous.

Amanda said...

I've been admiring your blog from afar, but today I really wanted to comment on your entry.

Have you seen

Every day there are new notes posted, and its a great reminder that you are beautiful, no matter what.

Also - I have such a hard time with the work life balance too. Biggest suggestion is that make sure you take some time for yourself each day - no matter if its 10 min or an hour, at the beginning middle or end of day. Remember you need you time too.

Good Luck!