Exhaustion and Burnout: Part One

First of all, I’d like to apologize for not posting as often as I usually do on here recently. I love writing this blog and I feel bad that as of late, it’s had to take the back burner on the stove of my life.

For the past several weeks, I’ve had to work longer hours at work. Two of my employees have had COVID, and since I’m the General Manager and the only salaried employee at my store, any labor shortages or slack immediately become my responsibility. I’m not exaggerating when I say I’m almost dead. Last week, I clocked 61.98 hours, and that’s not including the lunches I worked through catching up on paperwork that I’ve had to neglect.

The thing that sucks the most about the whole ordeal is that the harder I work and the more I accomplish, it still seems like it’s never enough. The backlogged projects still shout at me. The unreasonable expectations of higher-ups still loom over me. They expect me to be more than human, to function like a well-oiled machine, but I just can’t. I’m unfortunately human. I have feelings. I get tired. I’ve been living off of candy and fast food for weeks because I’m always too tired to make anything better.

My bowels are irritated. I’ve had to hold myself and medicate myself to the point where my stomach is never not hurting. I take medicine to go and medicine to stop going, and I haven’t been allowed to simply go when I need to in so long that it’s going to take me a while to straighten myself out. Some days I don’t eat until I get home at night because I’m afraid that if I eat it will give me the urge to go and then my sales floor will be unattended.

Does my boss care? No. When I hear from her at all, it’s for her to inquire about my progress and to ask about our sales numbers. What are you doing to motivate your team to success? When will your excess truck be out? Why haven’t you made progress toward the XYZ project and do you have an estimated completion date? What conversations are you having with customers to promote our programs? Your sales numbers are not reflective of company expectations. Please tell me what you are doing to change that momentum and move the needle in a positive direction. One day, I’m going to just start screaming and I won’t be able to stop.

I’m a cog in the machine. If I drop dead, they’ll eventually (sooner or later) replace me with some poor schmuck who’ll probably get paid even less than I do. May God have mercy on their soul.

I want to say more about all of this but it will have to wait for another day. I actually get a day off tomorrow and I intend on sleeping in. Take care and thanks for listening.

Thanks as always for being a faithful reader of The Voracious Bibliophile. If you like what you see, please like, comment, follow, and subscribe to my email list to get notified of new posts as soon as they drop. You can also email me at fred.slusher@thevoraciousbibliophile.com or catch me on Twitter, Instagram, TikTok, and Pinterest @voraciousbiblog. Keep reading the world, one page (or pixel) at a time.

Manifesting My Goals

Please save your gatekeeping nonsense for someone who gives a fluck because I do not.

First off, my number one goal right now is to actually make my Goodreads Reading Challenge goal this year. I only missed it by two last year, and that ish hurt bad. Am I probably going to have to read a crap ton of short books to make it? Yes. Do they count? Absolutely. Please save your gatekeeping nonsense for someone who gives a fluck because I do not.

My bigger and longer-term goal is to become someone like Oprah. I want to be someone who lives their life authentically and is able to translate that into influence on other people. Honestly, nothing would make me happier than being able to post a list of my favorite things and have people try them out just because I said they were awesome.

I do not want to work until I die. I want to sit down. A lot. Preferably with a good book in one hand and a glass of wine in the other.

Finally, my last goal is to retire by the age of 40. I do not want to work until I die. I want to sit down. A lot. Preferably with a good book in one hand and a glass of wine in the other. I mean, I’ll probably need to exercise some too, but I’m still holding out hope that science will figure out a way for me to do nothing and be skinny. Let me qualify that. I do not have a problem, aesthetically, with being fat. I know I’m the sexiest motherflucker God ever did carve from clay. That’s not my issue. My issue is that the world we live in makes it incredibly difficult for people of my girth to shop off the rack, and this bish here doesn’t like to shop from a catalog. I want to roll up into my local department stores like Ariana Grande and see it, like it, want it, and got it.

I do not have a problem, aesthetically, with being fat. I know I’m the sexiest motherflucker God ever did carve from clay. That’s not my issue. My issue is that the world we live in makes it incredibly difficult for people of my girth to shop off the rack, and this bish here doesn’t like to shop from a catalog. I want to roll up into my local department stores like Ariana Grande and see it, like it, want it, and got it.

Now, are all of these goals super-specific? No. And right now I don’t want them to be. For most of my life, my anxiety disorder has forced me to exert a large amount of (read: perceived) control over every aspect of my life. And you miss out on a lot of life by trying to force your will on everything. So for me I feel like the best course is operate from a state of grace, to focus on day-to-day living and on taking the next right actions. I know that by doing this, wherever I end up will be the right place for me.

Thanks as always for being a faithful reader of The Voracious Bibliophile. If you like what you see, please like, comment, follow, and subscribe to my email list to get notified of new posts as soon as they drop. You can also email me at fred.slusher@thevoraciousbibliophile.com or catch me on Twitter, Instagram, TikTok, and Pinterest @voraciousbiblog. Keep reading the world, one page (or pixel) at a time.

A Little Motivation

My mental health has been total garbage lately. And I know I’m not the only one. In fact, most of the people I know who ride the struggle bus now need a whole garage full to carry their mental baggage.

Just like Ivermectin won’t prevent or treat COVID-19, magic crystals and appropriating other cultures’ spiritual practices won’t prevent you from being human.

Let’s be honest, most self-help stuff out there is nothing more than a pen full of prosperity gospel pigs wearing Instagram influencer lipstick. It’s nonsense. No matter how many mindfulness exercises you do while sipping Evian water and inhaling spritzes from your essential oil diffuser, sometimes your mental health is just crap. Just like Ivermectin won’t prevent or treat COVID-19, magic crystals and appropriating other cultures’ spiritual practices won’t prevent you from being human.

You are not worth less just because your brain doesn’t produce the right configuration of chemicals when you need them. You are not broken. I guess what I really want you to know is that it’s okay not to be okay. It’s okay if all you do today is make it through to the end. Don’t let anyone dull your sparkle. A unicorn doesn’t concern itself with the opinions of a jackass. Remember that.

It’s okay if all you do today is make it through to the end.

And on the bright side, when all else fails, you can just do as Beyoncé said and “Middle fingers up, put ‘em hands high”. I promise you’ll feel better.

Thanks as always for being a faithful reader of The Voracious Bibliophile. If you like what you see, please like, comment, follow, and subscribe to my email list to get notified of new posts as soon as they drop. You can also email me at fred.slusher@thevoraciousbibliophile.com or catch me on Twitter, Instagram, TikTok, and Pinterest @voraciousbiblog. Keep reading the world, one page (or pixel) at a time.

Quote for the Day: September 30th, 2021

Don’t be pushed around by the fears in your mind. Be led by the dreams in your heart.

Roy T. Bennett, The Light in the Heart

How you choose to define success is completely up to you.

This is something I’ve been thinking about a lot lately. So many times, we allow our fears to place limits on what we can achieve with our dreams. Now, this is not to say there aren’t other factors at play. I’m not of the bootstraps mentality which says absolutely everything can be overcome through hard work and perseverance. Especially for people who occupy marginalized identities, the amount of success you’re able to attain is based on structural limitations determining how much access you have to the resources which make success possible. And let us also not forget that one person’s definition of success is different from the next person’s. How you choose to define success is completely up to you.

How much are you willing to lose? How often do you prefer to play it safe and hold your cards close to your chest?

That’s my disclaimer. In the most general sense, however, the decisions we make and the framework from which we approach those decisions are often based on the amount of risk we’re willing to operate within. In the business world, that’s called risk tolerance. Basically, the potential reward for any given decision (or investment) is directly proportional to the amount of risk you’re willing to take. How much are you willing to lose? How often do you prefer to play it safe and hold your cards close to your chest?

This is your ballgame. I hope you’ll make the right call.

Now, I’m not making a value judgment on people who choose to play it safe. Life is complex and not everyone is able to tolerate a lot of risk. But for everyone with the time and resources to pursue a dream, it’s not something you can put just 50% of your effort into. It’s all-or-nothing. And no one else is going to do the work for you. This is your ballgame. I hope you’ll make the right call. (P.S. My dad would be so proud that I used a sportsball analogy)

Thanks as always for being a faithful reader of The Voracious Bibliophile. If you like what you see, please like, comment, follow, and subscribe to my email list to get notified of new posts as soon as they drop. You can also email me at fred.slusher@thevoraciousbibliophile.com or catch me on Twitter, Instagram, TikTok, and Pinterest @voraciousbiblog. Keep reading the world, one page (or pixel) at a time.