As human beings we all want to be happy and free from misery. We have learned that the key to happiness is inner peace. The greatest obstacles to inner peace are disturbing emotions such as anger, attachment, fear and suspicion, while love and compassion and a sense of universal responsibility are the sources of peace and happiness.– Dalai Lama
I know I’ve talked extensively about quitting my job lately, but I can not help it. My apologies if the posts are getting tedious, repetitive or boring. It’s the biggest thing shaping my life at the moment. And I hope by talking about and sharing my experiences I can help someone else.
Since quitting, I feel like a feather on it’s gentle descent from the sky. Right now I’m enjoying the float down from the height of tension and duress into a realm of peace and tranquility.
The effects of stress on our bodies, minds and even our souls, is wide-ranging and detrimental. The impact of stress is real. It’s felt, ingested and even manifests in our bodies, brains, and demeanor. Since quitting my day job to focus on my writing, I have noticed my stress levels drop and I’ve experienced a few pleasant surprises due to lower stress.
I have thyroid disease and I’ve read time and time again that stress is horrible for your thyroid gland. Now that I’m no longer in the mode of constant stress, I realize how much pressure I was under. For some reason, when I was working a full-time job, plus freelance writing, plus writing books, plus writing here, I couldn’t see what a toll everything was taking on me.
Now, I see it clearly, and I honestly wish I hadn’t waited so long quit my day job. One of the side effects of having hypothyroidism can be a slow metabolism. I’ve always struggled with weight issues and it seems like I can literally gain weight overnight with no change to my diet or exercise routines.
Last year, I hit a wall. It all started with an accident, after this life changing event, I knew I didn’t want to stay in my day job. I guess you could say after the accident, I had a quarter-life crisis. I had drifted so far away from the person I really was, I didn’t know who that person staring back at me in the mirror was.
During this stressful time, I got a bad cold that lasted four weeks and gained about twenty pounds in less than a month. The weight I gained was mostly in my middle, and thanks to some internet research, I knew this weight gain was caused by elevated cortisol levels.
The good news is since I put in my two weeks notice, I’ve started losing that belly weight. My clothes are now very loose fitting. As an added bonus, thanks to weight loss and lower stress levels my blood pressure has dropped dramatically.
I feel like I am on the road to inner peace, and I’m still in the discovery stages of self-employment. Right now, I’m getting my manuscripts ready for paperback and I’ll start working on my third manuscript later this month.
Since quitting I haven’t really rolled up my sleeves and began writing on my third book, which is a bit odd to me, since I thought I’d dive right into writing. Instead, I’ve started a few projects around the house that I have been meaning to get done for months and I’ve read some books. That’s about it.
I’m not getting down on myself and I don’t feel guilty or like I’m being a slacker. Honestly, I’ve avoided posting here and working on my manuscript because I don’t feel like I am able to put out my best quality work right now. I feel like my brain is in “defrag mode.” To further draw on the computer metaphor, I feel like I’m in the middle of a huge data dump and I don’t have enough processing power to multitask right now. I guess another way of looking at it is I’m reprogramming myself. I’m no longer a cubicle inhabitant. I’m an artist, a writer and I finally have the opportunity to be as creative and free-thinking as I want.
As I’ve been reflecting on past events lately, I’ve went back through some of my past work. I don’t like a lot of what I see. As the veil of stress is being lifted I am reading my previous work with a new set of eyes.
In my opinion, I haven’t been putting my best writing out there, but part of that may be because I wasn’t in the best or right place to create to begin with. I’m focusing on getting to that place. I’m falling back in love with the craft, with the journey, with the writing process.