“I don’t have time for this right now,” I hissed viciously at a dental office secretary calling me at work to make an appointment. I said it and hung up. Her call was the single straw that brought the whole crazy haystack of multi-tasking required at my job down. I’d been short-tempered and harried with everyone near to me, I’d even helped destroy a wedding engagement due to stress, but cruelty to a well-intentioned stranger stopped me in my overachieving tracks. I went to the dental office to apologize. With tears in her eyes, and there were tears in mine, Karen looked up and said to me, “I had a job I hated.” We understood each other perfectly. I quit my job.
Far too many women I know, ages twenty-something to sixty-something, suffer from advanced cases of overwork. They’re smart and accomplished to the point of bodily breakdown. They fear deeply for their health and do not see the stress connection. Symptoms include: sleeplessness, anger, road rage, crying jags, mysterious illnesses no doctors can name which do not relent and make day-to-day living a drain, nausea, diarrhea and broken digestive systems. Can’t eat, can’t sleep, can’t get comfortable. But boy can they still work. Hmm.
Extreme levels of stress drive those you love away. They rob you of daily delight. So while I am unemployed and face-in to a rapidly dwindling bank account balance, I prefer and suggest you wag more and bark less.
Time presses. Be yourself. And you know that self is kind.