Fighting the Funk — An Exercise in Doing What I Need to Do

A pile of scrap paper used to sketch out a blog post.
A pile of scrap paper used to sketch out a blog post.
I can’t help it — even if you put a scrap of paper next to me, I’ll start scribbling ideas like a madman. It’s like a sickness 😐

Do you ever feel like your life is out of control and you don’t know how to fix it?

If you’re anything like me (and I hope for the good of humankind that there aren’t too many out there like me), you often keep so much on the plate that you don’t know where one item stops and where the next starts on the to-do list! In my case, it wasn’t even until recently that I managed to schedule time in to visit the doctor and the dentist (check ’em off of the list, by the way!) — partly due to dealing with an illness with a very visible effect; but largely due to constantly having so many things on the go and never knowing which one to attack.

It’s enough to drive someone mad.

Finding the Right Solution

Casey Palmer with his Canon 60D, taking some pictures of the fruits of his labours
Me, camera in hand, shooting something interesting. I get that work.

I’d say I know myself pretty well, and so here are some of the things contributing to the issue at hand:

I procrastinate

Unless someone’s lighting a fire under my ass to get things done, I tend to let things fall to the wayside. It isn’t easy to get me angry, but surprisingly, the angrier to get me, the more like I’ll do what I’m supposed to do just to prove you wrong.

I’m weird like that.

I’ll take the path of least resistance

I’m not conflict-averse in that I don’t have the balls to take someone on, but more often than not, it just doesn’t interest me to fight you. I don’t often come across people who actively try to get in the way of my accomplishments, so I don’t waste any energy fighting when I don’t need to.

Just don ‘t keep stepping on my tail, though. It’s like someone once told me — even though a bear might be hibernating, it makes it no less dangerous!!!

I’m a man of action, not planning

On top of the fact that I don’t exactly have a love for planning, with everything that I’m trying to do, I rarely seem to have the time to do it (even if I wanted to)!

I’m a man of action, but when there’re so many things requiring my efforts, it’s almost as if the sheer volume of the things to do cancels out the progress I make on anything else, and sometimes I walk into days feeling like I haven’t gotten much further than the one before.

It’s not all bad, though — I am a hard worker, and once I sink my teeth into a project I like, there’s no deterring me from it until I see it through. Keeping up that drive, the willpower — the momentum — that’s the hard part!

When you have a ton on your plate and you don’t feel like doing any of it, you’ve only got one option — you have to fight the funk.

Fighting the Funk

Source: Uploaded by user via Jared on Pinterest

I’ll be the first to admit that I’ve been in a bit of a funk lately — between job changes, cold weather and the hot mess that is my calendar, things blur more as more things get piled on. While February’s has all sorts of awesome lined up with trips to Buffalo and Vegas, parties and events starting to show up and my ambitions ever-relentless, it doesn’t look like things are going to get any simpler!

But it doesn’t have to last forever — there’s a secret to surviving a funk! The secret to getting past these overwhelming moments and avoiding slipping into a nervous breakdown that’ll tear apart all the stuff you’d been working on — is taking a look behind you and realizing how far you’ve come already.

A Blast from the Past

Who's that boy?

If you asked 20-year old Casey Palmer about where he’d be a decade later, he wouldn’t have imagined getting married. He wouldn’t have imagined working jobs with real responsibilities, using social media as a way of forging real relationships with others, or trying to push the envelope on so many fronts.

It’s taken a long time, but I’m finally starting to see how all the time I spent working on creative pursuits, leading volunteer teams and balancing jobs has helped make me who I am now. And while I’m not yet where I want to be, I’m more confident than ever that I can get there.

February — and the rest of winter altogether — it can definitely get you down… if you let it. Or you can celebrate the successes you’d have so far. You can relish in all those little victories and let them propel you to even greater ones.

So I see you, winter blahs, and I’m telling you to shove it —I’ve got work to do and I’m not about to let you stop me.

One month down, 11 to go.

Let’s get it.

–case p.