• Stacey J. Warner

Feeling Lost? It's ok.

Updated: Jul 9, 2021

Does awakening from Covid have you feeling a bit lost?

Personally, I feel like I went into Covid one person and came out another.

When lock down started in March of 2020, I had already committed to complete surrender because 2020 started with me getting laid-off my full time job doing sales for a well known coach to just a commission based income without being promised a steady stream of leads.

My world was turned upside down but then two months later at the beginning of February, I was given the position of Director, still commission only but with a steady stream of leads. This was a high point, I felt like I had finally landed, no more money worries. There was going to be enough money to save for a house, pay off my car, make sure Cole had four years of college paid for, etc. I wanted it! I was ready!

Then, Covid hit. All those driven dreams shattered within weeks.

What affected others didn’t impact me as much. I was already working from home. Cole, being in high school and working at Kroger, made him pretty much self reliant.

I did miss the dog park and the handful of friends I had made since moving to Louisville but other than that life felt okay, except for the tailspin that was happening at work and the reduction in income.

Month by month, I watched as people got laid-off until it became a ride-or-die team of six all with the same salary but with different commission based income. It felt good to be a part of something. I was in the trenches with a team and even though it felt we were on the Titanic bailing with spoons, we kept afloat and weren’t alone.

I worked as many hours as it took. The constant barrage of thoughts of how to keep the company going, filled 80% of my daily thoughts. Through Zoom, I “held the hand” of my CEO weekly as she shared her deepest fears and frenzied ideas. Pivoting our sales technique weekly, hiring new marketing people monthly, changing what we were selling quarterly. By mid summer I was her CRO, back to a low salary and making very little through commission.

Mid summer, she completely changed the way we did sales and after listening to her do a couple calls, one in particular where she manipulated a client to do her program over paying for his wife’s health insurance who had cancer and agreed to him doing the program on the call, I felt disgusted and weary. It reeked of desperation. After the call, she asked if I could have closed the sale. I said, “No. I couldn’t make the promises you made to him. You can make those promises because it’s your program.”

She made me promises of coaching, and playing a different role in the company. None of which came to fruition.

By October, I was barely bailing. Where before I was frantically filling my spoon a thousand times an hour, now I’d do a spoonful an hour. Barely able to do that. In December when she said she didn’t want to lose me but didn’t know what to do with me. I said, “just let me go.” I was so tired. I’d rather float out to sea, not know my future than continue to bail.

So there I was, floating out to sea on my life preserver.

Deep breaths.

I recently read in the New York Times that there is a nascent counterculture movement emerging in China. It is a backlash against the country’s hypercompetitive work environment.

Tangping, the Mandarine word for “lying flat” means forgoing excessive material wants, including marriage and kids -all the entrapments that require working hard, competing, and being so driven to get where? That is the question.

Perhaps that’s the question that we are all asking and that is why we are all feeling a little lost. We have come out of a hyper focus of “staying alive” and now we’re tired, burned out, not wanting to work so much and not understanding why we were working so hard in the first place?

Covid taught us the importance of family, friends, a slower pace, the enjoyment of our homes, nature, time with our animals. We’ve realized that more, more, more, is not the only source of meaning in life.

We have had an awakening. So now what? I suggest “tangping,” lying flat. Imagine you are floating on the water and the current will take you where you need to go. There is nothing to do but trust, surrender, knowing that you will be found.

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