“Exercise gives you endorphins. Endorphins make you happy. Happy people just don’t shoot their husbands, they just don’t.” — Elle Woods, “Legally Blonde”
I’ve been a ball of nerves lately. I can’t sleep. I don’t want to eat. The past few days I’ve found myself paralyzed, sitting at my desk with a queasy stomach, unable to force down my cinnamon raisin bagel and making do with my ever trusty Diet Coke. Yes, I know that makes nerves worse.
The truth is, uncertainty has taken over my life for the first time since I got my job. Granted, it’s mostly of a personal nature, and it will work its way out, but it just reminded me how tough uncertainty is when you’re finding a job.
You never know when the right contact will appear, when the right person will read your resume, when a job just for you might open. You just can never know. You can plan all you want, the pressure builds, you worry every night so much you can’t fall asleep no matter what boring SMC infomercial is on or sound machine is buzzing. You wake up every morning so full of anxiety you can’t move.
All through my job search, running became my stress relief, my therapist, my comfort. Every time I tied my Asics, I grimaced and cursed. But, every time I returned, I was rejuvenated, sweaty, red-faced and smiling.
My stomach was fluttering all day AGAIN today, and it just occurred to me: Get off your ass and go run, Miss Pink Slip!
So tonight, I darted out around 8:30 p.m., an hour after eating a plateful of spaghetti and swaddling myself in a blanket on the couch to watch “How I Met Your Mother” re-runs. Even those episodes couldn’t rouse me from my depression. I had a nagging sense I needed to get out and move. I was gasping by mile one and doubled over from the pasta binge, but I kept going. I got home just as the sun set and took a long, hot bath. I feel like a new person.
I’m headed out of town tomorrow for a tough work week, and my tennis shoes are going with me. I know I’m going to need them.
What’s your sure-fire stress relief?