The “Adequate” Rut: Get me out of here.

I’m in a rut.

For years, I’ve thrived on my energy, my passion, my ideas and my sheer will to do what most others quit too early to achieve.

That has always made me different. And that has always given me pride.

But right now, I’m facing something I haven’t yet faced in my career – and I guess it’s more than that. In my life, really. And what’s worse is I can’t exactly articulate what that “something” is.

For the last few months, I’ve had trouble getting my brain to click on all cylinders – to focus on extremely complex problems long enough to solve them, when usually I’m one of the few who can… Instead, I’m stumped.

I’m feeling at the bottom of my game when I should be enjoying what I’ve achieved over the last decade and looking forward to all that is to come.

As my 29th birthday nears, I have to wonder if I’m sabatoging myself and subconsciously remaining in a funk of some sort as my mind wanders into questions of whether or not I have accomplished everything I wanted to – or that I ever aspired to – in my 20s. And that includes more than just my career.

I certainly don’t think that your 20s are your best years by any means, but I also have that nagging feeling as though there’s something I let slip by.

There’s something I missed that I should’ve been aggressively pursuing or working on. There’s more I could have accomplished – more people I could have helped – more time I could have given or shared outside of what my personal history book actually shows.

I can’t shake the feeling that my 20s have simply been adequate. Nothing more. Nothing less. Just adequate.

And personally, there’s nothing I despise more than being defined as ‘adequate’ or ‘good enough’ in any category of my life that I care about – whether being a marketer, a wife, a daughter, a volunteer, or a friend.

I fear in almost all of them, I’ve failed in some way. But maybe that’s the curse of being a woman – we never feel like we’ve given any one area of our lives everything we could, and instead end up trying to be everything to everyone and failing at it all.

In my 30s, while still a little over a year away, I believe – or I at least hope – I will mature enough to be content with what I’ve achieved during the next decade instead of feeling like I could have done more as I do now.

Your are only as good as your last achievement is a concept I can’t ever shake, and I’m feeling like 2011 has been one big dry spell full of draining, hard work with nothing notable yet achieved.

Ironically this feeling has paralyzed me from gaining what I would deem as a worthy recent achievement, which is the very reason I’m in this rut to being with. The only thing I know right now that’s absolutely certain is that it’s time to get out of the rut… or the dip, as Seth Godin might call it.

My own muddy, messy, big-ass, overwhelming dip.

I don’t know how else to get out of it other than to press into it, so time to press harder.

If you come looking for me to throw me a rope, I’ll be the one with mud all over my face.

 

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