Take charge advice for work and play every Thursday


Things are about to get really busy at work. I see the tidal wave coming, but there is nothing I can do ahead of time. I’m stressing out about what I will have to do and planning in my head instead of sleeping. The worst part is, the start date is completely out of my control–it could be some time today or in two weeks. There is no way to know. What do I do?
–Another Sleepless Night
Dear Sleepless,
You are in a position custom made for anxiety. As hard as it may be, take a deep breath and chill out. This is a temporary situation and you will come out ahead on the other side. Cut out caffeine and get some exercise to work out your nervous energy. At work, there is actually a lot you can do to prepare for your busy time. You may not be able to work directly on your upcoming project, but you can clear your plate of all administrative work. Make sure you have filed all your back expense reports, are up to date on training and certifications, and have completed any HR paperwork that you can. You can also start researching topics and problems you are likely to encounter on your project, so you feel more prepared when things get started. Also, if you are slow at work now but you will be slammed in the indeterminate future, take advantage of the down time and take care of some personal items. Book your next vacation, pick up your dry cleaning, and shop for a new pair of work pants (there’s a summer sale at banana republic now!)
I love the summer! I love the pool! But I’m stuck inside all day at work and my apartment complex doesn’t have a pool. Any ideas on how to have some fun in the sun (and water)?
–Vacation is all I really wanted
I feel you. Personally, I get really distracted this time of year, day dreaming about the beach or drinks with tiny umbrellas. Let’s tackle being couped up at work first and then how to get into a pool. I strongly advise getting out of the office once or twice a day during the summer, just to breathe the heavy air. Eat lunch outside or take a short walk. If you can swing it, run an errand or two or take a drive with the windows rolled down and the music blasting. I promise, it will take 10-15 years off immediately. Play hookie if you have the sick or vacation time. Ask HR if you can work a compressed work schedule to get a day off during the week or take advantage of Summer Fridays if you company has them. As for getting access to a pool, you can look up local public pools and frequent those on evenings and the weekend without breaking the bank. Also, you can ask your friends to see if you can tag along with them to their pool. Offer to bring a batch of mojitos (in a plastic container!) and you have yourself a party. If you are a little more daring, neighborhood pools are often staffed by teenagers–you can walk by the gate without signing in or claim that you have forgotten your pass and will bring it tomorrow without too much drama. Or if you are desperate, buy a wading pool and put it on your patio/deck/kitchen floor.
Have a question about work or play? Email askidgie@gmail.com
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