I’ve always been one to plan. My fiance, Victoria, makes fun of me all the time because I am fairly predictable in wanting to lay out the “how” behind every little thing we do. It’s a blessing and a curse. It’s great because it keeps a little order to the daily routine and I think helps balance our relationship out, but it becomes a burden when the planning enables anxiety and creates unrest. Simply put, a little planning is great, a lot is bad. Planning is in my DNA and something I’ll always do, no matter what (much to V’s dismay). So why am I telling you about my planning OCD?
Well, the truth is that I don’t have a plan right now and it’s killing me. For the first time in my life I can tell you that I have no idea what’s next. Without knowing what is next, it’s impossible to strive for anything. My opinion is that you need to know what you’re shooting for before you’ll get there. Sure, some things fall into place by chance, but I’ve always had to work hard for what I’ve gotten and that’s a direct result of thoughtful planning, in my opinion.
I am comfortable now. I’m 26. I live in Chicago. I have a beautiful fiance. I have a rock-solid family. I have great friends. I have 2 phenomenally entertaining dogs. I have a stable job. I’m financially successful. But I have no clue what’s next. Call it an early mid-life crisis. I am getting bored and looking for self-actualization in a much different manner than I ever did.
25 was not an easy year for me. My mother was diagnosed with cancer (but beat it, like a boss), Victoria had a bout with health, as well (and also beat it!) and my job had a brutal amount of stress. I took over a floundering team and was tasked to turn things around, which is by far the most rewarding thing I’ve been a part of in work, but also the most energy-sucking. In the process of trying to find sanity, I put more focus on things like comfort, relaxation, anxiety-reduction, and achieving overall balance, but where I don’t want to ever go is put this comfort before my ambition. Where I do want to go is to have my career be comfortable because I love what I am doing. The two paths are close in definition but lead to completely different outcomes.
The point of this blog is 3 fold.
1. I am a visual / hands-on learner. If I use this site as a central repository for my thoughts, ideas, and insights, as well as a hub for interesting materials, I am sure I will begin to figure myself back out.
2. I love writing. I think communication is the most important aspect of life. I want to use this constant communication as a way to continue to sharpen the blade, per say.
3. Depth. One huge source of inspiration is my brother. His depth is unparalleled and he is such an interesting guy. He’s 23, in his first job out of school, a tremendous photographer (a hobby he picked up recently), extremely knowledgeable about nearly everything, well-informed, opinionated, down to earth and genuinely cool. It is so obvious that he’s living every day in a self-actualizing manner, largely because he took the time to understand who he personally was and then had the stones to tap into his creative side to show the world that.
To sum this all up, I know that I work well when I have an idea of what’s next. In order to truly know what’s next, I’ll be spending some time trying to articulate that for my own selfish reasons. I’ll also have a few opinions on the Cleveland Browns.