Knowing When to Quit #2

The thing to realise about Impossible Stories though, is that you can’t make everything happen at once. It takes time, effort and A LOT of mistakes, meaning that although for the most part I am doing brilliantly, I am still a human trying to figure out how to, well, human and sometimes I get things wrong.

When I wrote last week’s blog post I was trying to boost myself after feeling rather crappy for over week. I figured I was low because I was on my period and that it would pass, so I wrote some motivational words (which are no less true now than they were then) attempting to boost my confidence and remind myself that I was on the right track. I’d felt pretty deflated about things, but kept myself busy, running from one class to the next, one job to the other. “If I don’t give myself a moment to think about how I am feeling, it won’t need to be a problem and it will eventually go away”, I thought, like a girl who hasn’t spent the last three years of her life in therapy…

Shockingly, that didn’t hold out for too long. Come Tuesday evening I was sobbing on the floor of my apartment, having a tag team of three friends from various parts of the world cheer me up with motivational voice notes, texts and songs. The moment of truth had arrived: I’d taken on too much and was working myself into the ground.

At first I was annoyed at myself. I do this a lot, this overload and burn-out scenario, and I really ought to know how to avoid it by now. But, as my mum reminded me on the phone after another teary episode the next day, I can’t beat myself up for being ambitious. I set myself a goal, and although I am getting better at taking my time, I have often been known to throw myself head first into the deep end, without really thinking of the consequences or whether I’ll have the energy to keep myself afloat. In trying to be healthy and go for something, I’d actually gone too far the other way and was taking on an stupid amount of work, leaving no time for me to look after myself.

So I quit what I thought would be my dream retail job (selling books in a big fancy shop really isn’t all it’s cracked up to be) to free up more time for my uni work and friends. My mini meltdown at the beginning of the week meant I had missed a full day of classes and that isn’t something I can afford to happen just so I can earn some extra cash. I also realised that the way I was going, I would be spending the entire year under insane amounts of pressure and “I don’t have time”, completely missing out on all the fun things that Manchester has to offer. I’d rather just have enough money to get by and have a good time, than have savings and be completely stressed out.

I suppose the pro from all this is that now I know that if I ever NEED to work a 74 hour week (uni work, classes, jobs combined) then I can manage for about a month. Which, if I do say so myself, isn’t bad going. I also managed to stop myself before things got really bad so after a lot of sleep, food and scrap-booking this weekend, I reckon I’ll be right as rain with my normal, manageable and healthy workload.

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