I haven’t written here in almost two years.
I never expected myself to be a quitter. Consistency and constant progress have always been extremely important to me. I’ve written about it ad nauseam even just on this blog.
I don’t want to jump in and act like there was no massive silence, so here’s what I’ve been up to in the last two years.
Since I wrote my last article, I have been raising my baby (now toddler), traveling, moving, and mostly, working.
2018 was a rollercoaster ride for me.
It was my first full year as a parent. My daughter, Poppy, was born 6.5 weeks early in April of 2017 and adjusting to new motherhood is not easy.
My partner, Ryan and I had moved from Vancouver to a smaller city right when she was born, so that was another adjustment.
The very beginning of 2018 brought a change in my career that saw me in the most challenging position of my life. Fun and fast-paced at first, it seemed like exactly what I needed to continue to advance my career.
But as the year continued on, I began to get worn down. Moving, motherhood, postpartum depression, and anxiety, this job change…. it all worked together to create the perfect molotov cocktail. So 2019 began with massive burnout.
Burnout was not something I’d experienced before, and I had been experiencing it for probably months before something snapped.
It wasn’t until I finally drew a line in the sand and for my mental health, decided to take a short sabbatical to collect myself that I realized just how bad it had become.
I was a shell of the person I had been. I had a hard time finding joy in anything, even the things that I loved to once do. I wasn’t sleeping, I had lost 10 pounds, I compensated for my anxiety and depression by partying. I wasn’t connecting with my daughter, Ryan and I had taken a hiatus, and I was constantly an anxious mess of a person.
I would find myself either unable to fall asleep at night so up working, or waking up at 4 in the morning to get a few hours of work in before my team was up.
I remember at one point wondering what it would be like if I just disappeared. What if I left and didn’t come back? What if I just ceased to exist?
I was in dangerous territory when 2019 rolled around. I forgot myself. I burnt out. And I had hit my rock bottom. This isn’t the person I was, or needed to be for myself, my daughter, my family.
So I went to therapy. I reconciled with Ryan. I spent some time with Poppy. I went to Vegas with my best friends to celebrate my 30th birthday. And then I came home and much to the relief of my therapist, Ryan, and everyone who cared about me decided to make some changes.
The first was to make things better with my family. The second was to leave the company that was giving me so much anxiety.
I didn’t really have a plan, except to take a break, collect myself, and then slow down. I had a few companies approach me about consulting, so I knew I had options. But Ryan’s career gave me some breathing room and afforded me a bit of time to take it slow.
I gained a great deal in 2018. I learned a lot about startups, about marketing and growth, and about a new industry. I developed as a marketer, leader, and person.
I learned where the outer edges of my limits are, and then I experienced what it was like to go so far past the outer edges that it felt like I was falling rapidly but infinitely; there was no bottom to hit.
Back to Intention
I started this website in 2015 as a platform to help people intentionally design their lives. You can’t be unhappy in one area of your life and expect to be healthy and happy in all others. Work and life can’t be compartmentalized anymore if it ever could.
But somewhere along the way, I stopped intentionally designing my own.
Work can be one of the most fulfilling pieces of the human experience. It’s a cornerstone of human growth and potential. Nobody can expect to be happy with their work all of the time, but that’s not really the point.
The point is to challenge yourself, to grow, and to make intentional decisions that align with your values. At least most of the time.
I don’t beat myself up for misstepping and ultimately driving myself to burnout. Lapses in judgment, even long-held, are also part of the human experience.
Who knows. If 2018 didn’t unfold the way it did, maybe I wouldn’t have a full understanding of what’s important to me. It’s tough to appreciate the highs in life when you haven’t felt the lows.
I’ve found the perfect place to call “home”, at least for now. Poppy turns 3 in April (how?!) and we have some sweet and exciting changes in our family in 2020.
I’ve carved out a sweet spot for myself in marketing consulting with DTC, eCommerce, and SaaS companies.
I’m working on an exciting project of my own with people I admire, respect, and with whom I share values.
I won’t say that I’m back for good and that I’ll be writing regularly. But my intention is to get back into the swing of publicly sharing knowledge and ideas to contribute to the conversation again.
I have plenty of half-written pieces I never ended up publishing that I might as well get out there into the world.