There are two people I read every day. One is Seth Godin, who consistently delivers wisdom and inspiration in digestible, actionable bites. The other is Fred Wilson of Union Square Ventures.
Initially, I began reading his blog because we pitched one of his partners. But now, I read his blog (delivered to me as an email) because so frequently he provides me with a macro sense of what is happening within the part of the economy I operate.
But today, I read with simple appreciation for helping me and so many others feel like we’re not alone in this life that has become too busy, too full.
I knew that this year would be hard. Starting Pearachute, teaching at Kellogg, having to move houses, and being maid of honor in my sister’s wedding is a lot to have happen in the first six months of the year. Little did I know that my nearly 11 year old furry best friend would get cancer, my company would compete locally with four other businesses, my husband’s job would become more intense, and crazy opportunities would come to Pearachute (more on that another time).
At first I got a rush out of my ability to manage it all. I was seamlessly Instacarting, Chiming, and Luxe Valeting my way through weeks. I made it to activities with my boys. I worked out. I planned 3 hour classes for students. I beat aggressive goals with the company. Somehow it was all getting done.
And then, something changed. It wasn’t sudden, it was like a slow storm that takes all day, starting first with cold winds, then a darkening sky, and finally an oppressive downpour.
It’s not that it all came crashing down. It’s just that I did. I gained weight. I was tired all of the time. My fuse was short with everyone I love. And the world began to…dull. It’s hard to explain. I’m sure a therapist would call it depression, but I’d rather compare it to wearing literal, not metaphorical, blinders. The edges were dark but whatever was in front of me was in focus.
I was like that for weeks, telling myself that it’s just a few more months until it gets easier. But it took the third morning in a row of my son asking me “Am I having a babysitter tonight?” before I realized that it and I have to change.
I can’t not do any of the things on my plate, but I can stop adding to it, and I can do them in the right order. Last week I was feeling guilty about saying no to requests for mentoring and judging pitch competitions. I cringed when I left work early to sneak in a workout. This week, I’m not going to feel guilty. I’m going to do what is best for my family and friends first, me second, Pearachute and my team third, and everything else will come after.
Thank you, Fred, for inspiring me to put it in writing.