The Devil’s Workshop is a Lousy Place to be in: The Prequel

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Waking up and getting out of bed can mean two entirely different things to some of us. We wake up because our alarms went off, maybe someone woke us up, or we had a terrible dream (or an awesome one that was cut short). Whatever the reason, our eyes open and we think “Great, I’m awake”.

May I ask you something? When you read the “Great, I’m awake” line, did the voice in your head sound happy or sarcastic? Because if it sounded sarcastic, you’re one of the few “us” to whom waking up and getting out of bed mean two separate things.

The reason I’m writing this blog is because there was a low point in my life when the thought of getting out of bed felt like such a bad idea. If I may, I’d like to share that experience with you.

It all started a month back. Work at Biruwa Advisors was slow to say the least (I work as a Management Consultant here and our work is almost entirely project-based). The macro factors of the country had caused businesses across Nepal to go into ‘survival mode’. Or in other words, ‘focus on operations and cut consulting’ mode. Needless to say, we weren’t getting revenue-generating projects.

And that’s when it happened.

I’d wake up in the morning and my first thought would be “What’s the point of getting up and going to work?” Don’t get me wrong- I love working at Biruwa. The organizational culture is great, the team is absolutely brilliant, and the work is simply amazing. It’s just that the absence of work during that particular time made me feel unproductive. And along with it, came a whole spectrum of negativity that consumed me for a good two weeks (maybe even a month).

I felt:

  1. Useless: I could not contribute my skills and knowledge to anything. I began feeling useless as a Marketing Researcher. What good is a service if no one wants it? And then I began feeling useless as a person. Did my existence even matter?
  2. Hopeless: Days passed. And then weeks. Still no projects. I began feeling like we would never get any projects. Ever. I felt as though nothing in my life was under my control.
  3. Irritated: Every little thing started to annoy me. It felt like a voice in my head was going “Shut up, shut up! SHUT UP!” every time someone started talking to me. This voice kept getting louder and louder until I became:
  4. Frustrated: Frustrated at home, frustrated at work, frustrated with my friends. I would get dangerously angry over the tiniest of things; for no reason. And the worst thing was I didn’t think anyone would understand because I did not understand why I was feeling the way I did.
  5. Alone: Nothing feels worse than feeling alone. I felt so alone, as though I had no one to talk to. It sucked.

Hopeless, frustrated, and alone- it was a terrible period in my (short) life. And it all began with feeling unproductive at work. You know the saying “An idle mind is the devil’s workshop”?  I experienced first-hand how lousy it can be in there.

I feel much better today. I’m not saying that I’ll never feel the same negativity again. But I will be much better prepared to face it head on. If you ever feel the way I did, please know: You are not alone. There are many roads that lead us to the negative space, but the outcomes are usually the same (or similar).
Also, if you’re curious to know how I bounced back, please follow this link to read my original post on LinkedIn.

 

And one last thing: I am working to develop myself as a writer, so please do share your thoughts by commenting below. I appreciate any and all feedback.

 

 

 


 

Shamir is a Business Associate at Biruwa Advisors Pvt Ltd. Follow him on LinkedIn to read more articles in the near future.