[Sober Living] Chasing After Ideals

Cancer? I had to re-read it and it still didn’t really sink in for some time. “…Lost his battle with cancer?” Over the years, I’d been inspired by him a number of times. Some of the ideas this career professional shared – dropping off the grid to live life or letting go of all the stresses of work at a designated point along his drive – still resonate with me. Our impacts are greater than we think.

I only worked with him for a few months.

During that project, we talked about work philosophies, which as it turned out, really helped me out with the anxiety I would later have to overcome constantly. Once I had been stressed out over figuring out long-term parking but failed to remember that I had my short-term parking squared away.

Little things like this.

“There should be a certain point in your commute, whether it’s a sign or anything at all, where you see it, and you drop off everything related to work at that point.” “I’m at the point now where I can walk out the door for lunch and leave everything related to work at the front doors.”

Rest in peace.

Obituaries and memorials aren’t typical content for this column. I’m not sure why exactly I thought it might. Maybe I just wanted to write about some of these thoughts that got me so emotional this morning? I’d never reached out after that project and we never really got to be friends.

But still, we/I hang onto people like this.

Don’t consider this transition to be rude: we, especially those of us living with being sober, are the least likely to consider our value in the eyes of others. My head is filled with negative talk that pervasively persuades me into thinking I’m not valuable to others. I think others experience this, too.

We forget our own impacts.

Some story we told people five years ago could still resonate with them today.

If we tend to be our own greatest enemy, we need characters to inspire us. More especially, we need people, even incomplete caricatures met occasionally over the course of a few months, to chase after those storms in our minds and inspire us with some quiet pleasantry about handling work stress.

At least, as a way to balance out all the stress from insecurities at work.

Why let work permeate so much?

Is it because the more we care about work, the more valuable we become?

This is a question I didn’t think to ask at the time, although I’m sure I would have gotten a great answer out of this particular person. There are others that I can ask, certainly, but there’s this caricature I have in my mind of this crazy career professional, successful beyond belief, chasing storms.

This idealized person would know all the answers.

That wasn’t the real him, of course. He probably had flaws.

We tend to want idealized perfection in our lives.

It makes things easier.

Quotes: The first quote was about him and the second was advice he gave me. I chose to omit any reference to this person by name or anything other than one of his hobbies. That might give away his identity, but really, I wanted to write all this to get it out of my system while being as respectful as I could.
Sources: My professional experience, I guess.
Related: Other Sober Living essays.
Picture: A drawing of a sports car with maybe something other than dust kicked up.
Written On: October 16th [45 minutes]
Last Edited: No additional edits.
My big goal is writing. My most important goal is writing "The Story." All other goals should work toward that central goal. My proudest moment is the most recent time I overcame some fear, which should have been today. I'm a better zombie than I was yesterday. I'm not better than you and you're not better than me. Let's strive to be better every day.