100% Jodi: Feeling Unbalanced Through Summer, Transitioning to Fall
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Has the swirl of summer left you feeling a bit unbalanced?
In this episode we’re going to acknowledge that this season requires a bit of letting go of control and going with the flow. Because summer is a swirl!
Summer Means Transition
Let’s talk about transitions. You might not want to hear me say this, but in the US we are coming to the unofficial end of summer with Labor Day on the horizon.
Though we usually get to enjoy good weather for another few weeks, it has a different feel to it with our daily routines shifting.
There’s been a lot going on this summer. I don’t know if you’re feeling it and still processing all of the things that have been coming our way.
Gosh, I think back to mid-February when I relaunched this podcast after a sabbatical. It was right around the invasion of Ukrainian and soon after that we were starting to experience the effects of inflation. Then there were the threatening signs that we were headed into a recession. Then we heard we’re probably not going into a recession, then we probably are, now we probably aren’t.
The January 6th hearings became a thing over the summer and even just talking about all these things – my head is starting to hurt a little bit.
How Do Summer Events Impact You?
All of this, amongst other things, can have an impact on our work. Even if we’re not bringing these conversations into the workplace. If your impacted by what’s happening on the global stage it can impact your energy and your focus.
And not always in a bad way. Often times when you consider things that impact your energy and focus, we talk about the negative things. But those same things can have a positive impact as well.
I was having a conversation recently with a colleague and we were talking about a book that she had read recently. The book is The Upside of Uncertainty by Nathan Furr, which I’m going to check out. It reminded me of the book The Upside of Stress by Kelly McGonigal. The book The Upside of Stress goes into how stress can be a motivator.
We think about stress as negative, but stress in and of itself is not a negative thing.
If we have something big coming up, the experience of stress focuses our attention and energy, and can bring forth our best work. My colleague and I also talked about how our strengths, if they are allowed to run amok, can also be our weaknesses.
For instance, I would consider myself a thoughtful person in that I think things through and I allow myself time to be in the states of wonder and curiosity. However, this quality if allowed to run amok – I just love that term run amok – it will cause overthinking or what’s referred to as analysis paralysis. I can allow myself at times to think too much about something. Then it starts to get in my way of doing my best work.
Summer is About Coming and Going
This isn’t even what I was going to talk to you about. Can you tell I’m coming back from vacation and still transitioning to my day-to-day?
We are now back on topic I wanted to talk about: transitions. However, this off topic ramble is exactly what I wanted to refer to.
The summertime offers opportunities for different types of gatherings and enjoyment and time away or down time, etc. Yet often it feels like navigating choppy waters. This experience can leave you feeling unbalanced and even a bit foggy-brained (like I’m experiencing now).
You have colleagues that are getting ready to go on vacation. Or they are away on vacation. Or they are transitioning back from vacation and aren’t quite up-to-speed yet. Then you are doing the same thing.
And I’ll tell you in my own experience of getting ready to be away for six weeks. Even though the first four weeks I was still going to be working, it created havoc. My schedule became incredibly packed trying to get as much done before leaving. Never mind the planning and packing that needed to take place ahead of time.
Coming back from being away has been an enormous transition as well. My partner Eric and I moved into a new home four weeks before I left. I was away longer than I was in my new home. This gave me the added challenge of trying to remember where I had put everything when we moved in. I’ve spent ridiculous amounts of time opening up drawers, closets and cabinets trying to discover where I put that one thing I am looking for.
Transitioning Back from a Summer Break
Then there is the transition of having been on vacation for the two weeks prior to coming home. I did find some times to do some catching up on email. Yet, there were still a lot of actions that needed to be taken before I could delete or file those emails. I frequently had the experience of needing more time to get caught up. I needed to get my head wrapped around everything I needed to be aware of, and everything that was needed from me.
Additionally, some of the people I’m working with were then away. I’m moving some things forward. Some things are on hold while waiting for answers or information or the go-ahead to do other work.
Do you get that sense of trying to navigate choppy waters?
Now, I know my example might be a little more extreme or less extreme than what you’re dealing with. Yet you may be having a similar experience of swirl. There’s a sense of of coming and going, push-pull, sideways maneuvering, to navigate the situations that we’re going through.
As Summer Ends, Remember…
So, this episode is intended to:
One, acknowledge that we’re going through a season that might be requiring some mindsets, skills and abilities that may not necessarily be as needed in other seasons.
Two, acknowledge that transitions can be uncomfortable. They may make you feel a little unbalanced like you’re not at the top of your game. That’s okay, this too shall pass. It’s just a season.
And three, it’s going to be a little bittersweet to let go of Summer and to plan and prepare for the fall, perhaps before you’re ready. But you know that there are all new experiences to enjoy in the next season, when you’re ready to embrace them.
This is my end of summer episode to say you’re doing great. You’re not meant to be perfect. You are meant to bring you’re Perfectly-Imperfect-Full-Self to each day and do your best, knowing that your best looks different every day.
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