I’m fresh off a week off (today is my last day off before I return to the grind of both jobs), and I don’t think I’ve needed a break more. To say I was truly broken by the time 23 December rolled around was a massive understatement. What I’m writing next is not a “sob story” or me “being too hard on myself, we’re in a damn pandemic”, it’s what I actually felt.

I was flipping out on everyone, I worked 14 hours/day every day and it was subpar work (i.e. I make sure to let those around me know that I value them, but I wasn’t hearing it back). I cried and raged a lot. I was numb a lot too and wasn’t doing much to help my organizations (one of which I am a leader) and it’s members advance as much as I could, though I was there to support and nurture as needed. I forgot some responsibilities I had after so long on auto-pilot. I desperately needed a break, but didn’t want to admit to it, as I’d already admitted that I needed help with my eating disorder. Admitting to that on top of my feelings of feeling subpar and below my own realistic expectations was too much.

Cue the break. I even put “out-of-office” notifications on my personal email addresses so that people would know that I wasn’t going to be responding. I almost never do that. Normally, I’m accessible all the time.

I was originally only planning on being home for a few days, then come back to do some more work (surprise, surprise). I actually did come back to my house for a day to work and deal with some things that couldn’t be done virtually, but I realistically was there for less time than it took to drive there and back to my family. Driving there, I realized how much I am a workaholic that I gave up a precious day and a half with my family to work instead of being with them, and it made me do a hard reflection on my life up to this point. They said that they understood, but I didn’t even understand the pull I felt to have to work on my vacation.

Ok, time to stop being a downer about all the things that went wrong in 2021, and let me walk you through what went well for me. Being with family made me realize all of these things. I don’t normally make New Years Resolutions, but these are all things I’m going to be working on this year.

  • I rebranded Youth Beyond Enterprises to The Philanthropic BookAce in order to being more flexible in my writing and infopreneurship;
  • I set my sights on being a better leader and follower;
  • I determined that growth and development is what I need in my life (personally and professionally);
  • I did A LOT of online courses;
  • I registered to continue working towards my BA;
  • I joined a gym where I feel I belong, and;
  • Above everything else I started counselling for my decade-long eating disorder.

I needed that week off with my family more than they will ever know. It felt amazing to just sit and read a book, sit and watch TV or a movie, wander places I knew growing up, watch my youngest niece and nephew grow up (my nephew is almost my height and he’s 9), talk with my brothers, my sister-in-law and my Mum, and just relax. It was awesome and the thing that helped me mend my broken heart, soul and mind.

I hope your holiday break has been just as rejuvenating and re-energizing. You deserve it.