500 Words — Day Twenty-Eight: Perseverance
There was a moment tonight where I felt pretty helpless. For the first time in a very long while I felt completely out of my depth on an important document for work. I can say with certainty that I do not have the relevant experience to approach this assignment in the conventional way. But alas, I’m tasked with figuring it out. And at times, it kinds of feels that you’re just stuck without an obvious solution and hours of work to attempt to find some light at the end of some tunnel you are not necessarily are convinced is quite there.
The 10, 11, 12 hour days really start to wear down on you after awhile. And I’m not counting the amount of time it takes to workout, to write these articles, or to read a couple of pages something interesting before bed. There’s also the chores related with daily life and the drives to and from the office. When you feel helpless, the burning and burnout feel worse. Luckily burnout has always come in waves, so that feeling will eventually subside once this assignment is complete and I get ready to move onto something new. That’s the light that I’m hoping that I eventually get to. Unfortunately, I’m not quite there yet, I’m here where it’s very dark and I’m feeling pretty weak.
There was also a point when I felt like giving up on the assignment and just half-assing it to completion. It appears that everyone has a point where they simply don’t care any more and simply give up. I got pretty damn close tonight. The sore throat didn’t help either. Hopefully, I’m not getting sick because that just makes the whole process harder. It’s interesting that I’m not even thinking of taking time off because I might be sick. While that might show perseverance and dedication to putting in the effort, just feeling like I have to keep working is probably not the greatest relationship to work I have. Especially when I’m clearly not enjoying myself.
I was able to turn the task around by decomposing it into smaller tasks and tackling just the one specific task one at a time. I was able to get one of those tasks finished tonight and feel at least a little confidence that this strategy might work. It certainly beats feeling overwhelmed and lost. Like running a marathon after the point that you’ve hit the wall, you just got to take it one step at time. You may still be four, five, six miles away from the finish line but you can have faith that the strategy will eventually lead to the promised land.
So, I’m stuck limping towards the finish line. But it is not important how you finish, but that you finish. I’m not a quitter when it comes to putting the effort in that is necessary to do my part. There might be many more hours of overtime in my near future, but at the other end I’ll have valuable experience and more proof that any individual challenge can be overcome with the right mindset and strategy. Sleeping in on Saturday is going to feel so good.