Courtesy University of Northern Iowa Comp Sci Dept

I’ve been pushing myself pretty hard the last few weeks. It’s a little difficult not to feel cut off from family and friends, at least in some regards, when I put myself in this particular mindset. This tension has been so pervasive that, even when a day goes well or a weekend offers plenty of distractions or amusements, I find it difficult to relax.

I know that’s what I should be doing. I know that the more I push myself, the more likely it is that I will either burn out, crash, or both. I’m certainly not in a position where that sort of self-sabotage is helpful to anybody. I have people that rely on me and I don’t want to be the sort of person who shirks his duty or makes intolerable mistakes, even if I do own up to them when they’re made. A pessimist would look back on my life and say it’s a sorry, endless parade of one monumental screw-up after another.

Even if that’s the case, I’m not willing to give up.

We are truly our own worst enemy. My mind is happy to try and make problems bigger than they are, or even attempt to create them where none exist. It’s an unhealthy bout of paranoia, and I’m trying not to heed it. At the same time, I know that this undercurrent is keeping me from making the most of the time outside of work. This isn’t to say that I blame work for it – I can’t blame anybody but myself for a problem that’s in my own head – and given my position and duties, I’m very thankful to still be gainfully employed.

Let’s just hope that continues. In the meantime, I will try to relax. If I can even remember what that means.