Staying in my lane…how to get out of a funk

While I still feel a certain amount of shame over it, the truth is that I am not a very good driver. I have resigned myself to the fact that I need to avoid driving whenever possible, which is no easy feat when one lives in an area where the default is driving. A large part of my problem is that when I am on the road, I get so caught up in looking around at the other lanes that I tend to forget to stay focused on my lane which is a recipe for disaster.

Lately in my personal life, I have been struggling with the same problem; it’s been hard to stay in my lane. To say that this year has been challenging would be an understatement. It’s only July, yet I have weathered enough storms to last at least two or three years. The most recent crisis has been the cherry on top and has used up every last bit of strength from my personal reserves.

Several months ago, I shared in this space about the fiscal challenges facing the agency that I head up. We aren’t completely out of the storm, but our future is far brighter than it was in late April.  On the one hand, it has been incredibly humbling to use my professional skills to guide this agency out of the danger zone but it has also been taxing. I have worn more hats than I ever knew possible and frankly, I am ready to take off all the hats. My head needs some air!

In the end though, living with uncertainty takes a toll on you. In my case it’s been both professional and personal uncertainty.  Chronic uncertainty creates a certain level of vulnerability that no amount of self-care can completely eliminate and all of a sudden, it’s easier to look around and start wanting what you don’t have. Lately I have found myself in a funk imagining that everyone else is a success and that it’s just me who is the failure.  Deep down there had been a part of me that knew that was untrue but in getting out of my lane, all I had been able to see until a few days ago was everyone else’s success. When you are feeling shitty about your own life, it’s easy to only focus on everyone one’s else’s victories and rewards.

This past week, I felt my spirit demanding an end to the self-loop of defeat and I went back to the spring that rejuvenates my soul, church and my yoga mat. A few days ago, I started to see the personal death cloud that had been hovering ever closer to my head start to break up. Suddenly the sun started to peek through and while it’s partially sunny, visibility has been greatly increased. The truth is life throws us curve balls, it is the nature of life, yet I have what I need in this moment. The things that I want may come with time or not, but I can trust that what I have in any given moment is enough for that moment. It’s also helpful to remember that just like on the road of cars, the road of life demands that at times we are best served by staying in our own lane. 

1 thought on “Staying in my lane…how to get out of a funk”

  1. Saving your agency is a HUGE success (pretend for a moment you are in an interview for the next job…sounds pretty good, huh)? You actually mention that the ‘struggle’, the ‘uncertainty’ is what gets you down, but I think you skip from there to success/failure without seeing tha tthe struggle is actually different. I think you don’t have time to get to enjoy/see the success of your life — writing constantly and creating a body of work, amazing social service work, family, marriage. Definitely take some time to pat yourself on your back a bit more.

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