I’m suddenly insanely busy. I guess this is a combo of school getting ready to begin (I work at a school, by the way), and us getting ready to move (we’re moving, by the way), and oh, I’m taking two classes for my own education; they begin in two weeks. At a university that I will commute to, twice a week, which is two hours one way. Because that is the closest one.
Sometimes I re-remember that I live in a pretty rural area. Thank goodness for highways and audiobooks. And Vegas.
What I want to share with you today is how stupidly annoying everyone seems to get as soon as I get really busy. Has anyone else ever noticed this? I know I’m not alone.
At first I thought it was just me, that my tolerance for BS is way low. After I mulled it over, and had some humbling revelations, I also realized it’s not just my BSradar (which IS kind of wonky, I will admit).
People really do get useless when I’m very busy. They are reacting to my lack of strong, commanding presence. They feel they must fill the sudden (frightening) void with chatter, opinions, something. Stressed-out Rae is so bizarrely different from only-mildly-busy-Rae that everyone panics when the former rears her ugly head.
Recently, two people come into my office during my first 45 minutes at work, and told me I should change the way I do things.
One was an employee from another department, who spent 20 minutes explaining to me that it was really important that I leave my work at work. When I asked for some practical advice regarding application of said practice, I got two allegories, a joke, and a lecture, all admonishing me to “leave work at work.” I verbally agreed three times, but the co-worker would not stop. Probably because all I did was say, “I agree.” At the 20 minute mark, I put my hands up.
What I wanted to say:
“You just wasted twenty minutes of my extremely busy life with this nonsense. You’ve given me nothing useful to work with. Instead, you’ve only increased the gnawing sense of inadequacy, since I am already well aware that this stress is bad, and am already struggling to get it under control. Stories about imaginary boxes in my yard where I leave my imaginary work are not helpful to me. Rather, they make me want to face-rake you and ban you from my little corner of the world forever.”
What I actually said:
“I’m going to stop you right there. You are preaching to the choir, and the choir is starting to get pissed off. Please leave.”
I was going to tell you the story about the second person, but I feel like I just wrote an amazing conclusion. “Please leave” is untouchable.