Monday, May 6, 2013

Cranky Competitor!

by Kris Pitcher

You know the saying, "It's not you, it's me."? I've been thinking a lot about that lately. On a recent multiple hour car trip with my boss, he asked me about my contest and when I was going to "get all cranky".

I laughed and told him I wasn't going to get cranky at all, that I manage myself very well. Then I had a serious crabby spell. And I it me? Or, is it you?

I'm running into a special kind of stupid lately. People who ask really not smart questions about things that are so obvious I could poke my own eyes out. Is that me?

We may have been having a discussion about something for several weeks as I lead you up to an event or deadline. Then all of a sudden, it's like we're having the conversation for the very first time. Who was I in discussions with all this time? All that consensus we'd come to that now you don't recall...what is that about?

Again, me? Or you? Now I am reconsidering my statement. Am I cranky? Has my patience run thin at the six week mark? Or do I need to communicate more directly?

Before I decide that yes I am a crabby cranky competitor, or that you are special in ways I'm not equipped to diagnose...I will start with a few simple things.

Close in the circle. This can be difficult to do with work. But where it's possible, plan your projects, your travel, your meetings, or, just do your work. Skip the coffee clutch, the lunch loungers and water cooler drama. Keep things simple.

No one will notice if you don't bring something to the work pot-luck. There's usually plenty. Simplify where you can. Just do your work.

Simplify with social obligations as well. This is the time for you to focus your energy on your goals. You don't have time or extra energy to be planning neighborhood garage sales, going out dancing so you can be the designated driver, or playing 18 holes of golf on Sunday.

Rest. Get adequate sleep. When you are dieting for competition there are obligations you cannot give up. You have responsibilities. You are underfed, and over worked. You need all the rest you can get. If you need to hire out the yard work for a month - do it.

Choose your attitude. This is where my check comes in. We choose this sport. I remind people of this all the time. We're not all going to be pros. The top 1% will make it. For the rest of us, this is a lifestyle and a hobby.

As such, keep perspective with your family, your partner, your boss and yourself. Put a smile on and remember that even though it's hard, you've chosen it. So, as I get the same question again from someone I have already reached consensus with...I will take a deep breath, smile inside and have the conversation again.

When will I get cranky? I won't. Am I going to be crabby? Not this prep. Can I manage everything? Yes, and so can you with help and reminders. And support. Thank you for yours *smile! 

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