One good thing about a wicked head cold? You do not have the capacity to overthink things. In fact, you barely have the ability to think at all. Which is perhaps the reason I had brilliant ideas today at work. The kind of brilliant ideas that close deals. The first came at 6:15am as I was trying to get out the door. ‘Wait a second!’ I thought to myself. ‘Wait. One. Second!!!’ I realized a longtime partner of ours had given us more than enough money to partner with us on a second initiative without any additional outlay of cash. A for one, it helps us. B for two, it gives them tangible benefits to our partnership that they’ve not yet received. Why hadn’t I thought of this before?!
As the day wore on, and I did my best not to put my head down on my desk in an effort to stop the ringing in my ears and throbbing in my face, the ideas kept coming. Good ones. Things that likely hadn’t come to the surface before because recently (when thinking clearly) I have been stuck in the weeds. I admit I haven’t been looking at the big picture. I’ve been way too consumed with the environment and my colleagues to remember my overall goals. Not the number goals…the goals of the job…and the organization as a whole. You know…why I’m here in the first place.
When I start to get unhappy or dissatisfied I busy myself with minutiae. The items that need to get crossed off a list. The daily/weekly/annual goals that I’m charged with achieving. The numbers. In retrospect, of course, working only in the weeds and in numbers does nothing to improve my feelings about the job. I am a people person. I need to be out in the field talking to people, meeting with people, going out to lunch or for coffee, THESE are the things I’m good at. It’s where I excel. It’s how I’ve created a successful career. And yet, I get stuck in the weeds, and my unhappiness festers. And it turns into an urgent, almost manic, need to extricate myself from the situation.
Today I was making calls left and right, had a couple successful meetings, and I closed a very important deal. One that I thought up at 6:15 in the morning. THIS morning. Closed it in less than six hours. Why? Because I’m sick enough, and drugged enough, that I had no option than to just be myself and do the job that I know how to do on autopilot. Without overthinking, without planning, without doubt, I was able to go throughout my day with only one concern…and that was that I had Kleenex within my reach at all times. When not having snot run out of my nose during a meeting is my biggest concern, the rest of the BS self-imposed worry and doubt falls away, and I’m able to actually SHINE.
I know I can’t count on this head cold to stick around for long. And thus, by week’s end I’ll likely be clear headed and thinking again, but I hope I can continue to just keeping moving and do the job that I KNOW how to do. The job that I know like the back of my hand. Instead of the parts of the job that I hate but sometimes revert to when feeling stuck.
TODAY: What if focusing on the numbers and hanging out in the weeds is making things worse? What if I need to get out and do the job I’m capable of in order to enjoy it, even a little, until I figure out what’s next?