“Never continue in a job you don’t enjoy. If you’re happy in what you’re doing, you’ll like yourself, you’ll have inner peace. And if you have that, along with physical health, you will have had more success than you could possibly have imagined.”—Johnny Carson
Over the past year, I’ve been consumed with the toxicity of several situations surrounding and related to my job. I quit that job two weeks ago, and this Friday will mark my last day.
I’ve mentioned in several recent posts that I’ve been riding an emotional roller coaster lately, and it’s been contributing to my weekly weight loss battles. But I rode through the emotional roller coaster and found the strength to leave something that was comfortable—a job where I sat all day with all of my best friends, where my bosses believed in and encouraged me–because I ultimately felt poisoned. Sometimes in the midst of toxic jobs situations, though, you don’t realize for a while how much they actually affect you; sometimes it’s hard to connect the dots between stress, happiness and health.
One of my close friends and co-workers posted an old photo on Instagram last week; it was the two of us the summer we started at our company, looking tan, skinnier and happy. What happened to that girl, I wondered? The girl who loved the gym and loved to eat vegetables and worked hard to keep the weight off? The girl who went into the office every day excited for the day, excited for a new work adventure? The girl who used to organize office wide happy hours and sports team outings? Where did she go?
If I really look back, that girl has been gone for almost a year. I’ve been trudging along in mediocrity hoping for something to rescue me, but it never came. I’ve been unhappy. When I’m not happy, I don’t want to go to the gym, I want to lie on the couch. I don’t want a salad, I want macaroni and cheese. I want to leave the office and go straight to the nearest bar. I want to sleep … for days.
I was so nervous to tell my work I was quitting, so nervous for what the change would do to me. I walked into my boss’s office with every muscle tensed up and panic shooting through me. And then it was over, just like that. When all was said and done, it was like a giant barbell had been lifted off my shoulders. I felt 20 lbs lighter, metaphorically, at least.
I felt my outlook shift almost instantly. I got up every day on last week and went for a run. I came home early yesterday and made healthy dinners for the week to balance out the crazy schedule I knew I’d have. I left the office tonight and went straight to the gym, and I upgraded to my gym’s all access pass so I can work out all over the city. I haven’t been letting things that happen in the office stress me out; I just breathe in and silently count down the days.
The Johnny Carson quote above keeps ringing in my head—never continue in something you don’t enjoy. If you’re not happy you can’t find inner peace. And if you can’t find inner peace, you won’t have physical health.
I wasn’t happy, so I made a change. Here’s to new beginnings and getting my mental and physical state back on track.
++ While I did get some crazy looks from the folks on Bourbon Street, my morning runs during my New Orleans vacation were the highlight of my week and made me feel proud and strong. And I maintained my weight over vacation, which is really all anyone can ask for when heading to a wedding in Louisiana!
-– It was a good week overall, but I didn’t grocery shop until Sunday, leaving me picking and ordering out over the weekend.
Weekly +/- = – 0 // Total – 4