Thursday, January 17, 2008

Layers Upon Layers

Last night was something new for me--driving home in a snowstorm. It wasn't exactly the kind of blinding snow that shuts down an entire city, but seeing those little white stars shooting at me along the crowded interstate made me feel I was stuck in a retro 1980s Space Invaders video game. To pull into my driveway and view snow plastered across my grass was pretty cool.

I am getting tired already of having to consider so many layers when I want to venture out for anything--especially exercise. In Florida throughout most of the year you just take the warm weather for granted and stumble outside in whatever you might happen to be wearing around the house. Here, such behavior is met with frostbite. Makes it hard to get motivated to head to the gym or go out for a run at my usual 5:30 a.m., when the temperature and the grand sum of the digits on the clock feel nearly identical.

Sifting through too many layers challenges me on a more deeply personal level as well, beyond the external challenges of the weather. When I am over scheduled and left with too little time for reflection, I feel the clutter of layers of responsibilities and tasks crowding out room for deeper introspection. I want to peel these layers back or shove them to the side, but there are few solutions other than plowing through them and reducing them via action.

I keep counseling myself that much of the extra fabric relates to the newness of everything in my situation right now--the job, the move, etc. I really don't know what life here will feel like three or four months down the road, but in general the intensity of what I do as a full-time leadership consulting professional has been kicked up a notch or two. I am eager to master certain key aspects of the new position so I feel there is more space to breathe and intentionally pursue some networking in the Nashville area, and certainly some new writing.

The beauty of Williamson County continues to energize me in the midst of this transition. I don't want any of the layers to shield my eyes from the sense of vibrant life that abounds in this latest leg of the ongoing call to adventure.


At 5:51 AM , Blogger Rebecca said...

"When I am over scheduled and left with too little time for reflection, I feel the clutter of layers of responsibilities and tasks crowding out room for deeper introspection."

I hear this.

And, as someone who has also moved from warm-weather to cold-weather, I empathize about the constant dressing/undressing. My advice is to give yourself more time than you think you need to adjust to your new surroundings and you may be surprised how quickly things like snow start to feel like Home.

I appreciate the heartiness involved in getting on with your life, even in the dead of winter.

At 8:44 PM , Blogger Dave said...

Well, 'weather-wise it's such a lovely day.' But then again, I'm still in Florida and it's not the same without you.

But on a more organizational note, I think, applying a little Getting Things Done strategy of getting all these Layers down in one location where you can then rest easy that they will automatically remind you of them (like my 13 year old dog) might help free your mind.

To me, John, you are indeed an outstanding coach, and I just wish I could help you with the feeling of being overwhelmed that I sense coming from you the way that you've helped me focus and become less stressed. But alas, all I know is to recommend is pizza and ice cream. Let me know how that works for you.

Again, we miss you and your family here in South Florida. I was just getting used to your move to Central Fl and now you're not there. I'm sure you're all having a blast, though, and M wants you to tell Ms. Miley Cyrus "Hi!" when you see her. Slam dunk, my friend.


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