life Work

5 on a Friday – quick edition

November 6, 2020

Feeling: Mildly anxious. Frustrated that I have already heard G. (It’s 5:48 and I really want to run this AM).

Craving: A massage/spa day. Ideally as part of a couples’ weekend. Remember massages? (I feel they are a very high risk activity b/c you are indoors in a small space with someone for a long time — so not really worth it yet. Maybe someone out there is doing an outdoor version . . .)

Reading: Greg McKeon’s Essentialism and James McBride’s Deacon King Kong. I’ve heard 9 zillion references to Essentialism and while I’m all for leaning minimalist, I find myself resisting chunks of it (it just feels steeped in privilege to just do what you want and nothing else, and I do not aspire to live the life of the many CEOs that are referenced . . .). DKK is hilarious.

Listening: Enjoyed both By the Book‘s Martha Stewart episode and the Freakonomics interview of John Mackey (CEO of Whole Foods and rather controversial human).

Engaging: Fairly minimally with the unfolding political #(&!@. I’m actually really glad to be on call this week. It has been a welcome distraction.

For lack of a better photo, here’s this week’s planner spread with my I VOTED EARLY sticker for posterity.


  • Reply Shelly November 6, 2020 at 7:59 am

    I wish we could just get rid of the time change. I would also have the mildly anxious feeling for several days after a change. When my daughter was younger she was an earlier riser and a time change would mean up she would be up by 5 am. She’s 8 now and can play quietly in the house while I do some morning routine (I work early and exercise in the afternoon). When she was little for sure she would have destroyed something or made a huge mess if she was out of sight. I did after awhile just try to embrace being up early with her. And tbh, it has made me more of a morning person and a lot of my best productivity is early morning so I can thank her for that!

  • Reply RBS November 6, 2020 at 8:27 am

    Biden wins clearly in PA! The data folks at 538 and the upshot have been tweeting that for a day now. Outstanding votes in PA overwhelmingly D. In this sense, the R controlled house of representatives in PA achieved what it wanted– making it look R initially bc they didn’t allow counties to prepare mail in votes for counting until election day. In this case, being more informed can help with anxiety!

  • Reply Lisa of Lisa's Yarns November 6, 2020 at 10:49 am

    I did not care for Essentialism either… It was raved about by many so I bought it and was disappointed.

    I’m also craving a massage. I got a lot of them during my last pregnancy but don’t feel like it’s worth the risk, especially given my immune compromised position… Plus I feel like wearing a mask for a massage would kind of take away from the relaxation. I look forward to getting one some day in the distant future!

  • Reply Jessica November 6, 2020 at 11:24 am

    You might just have no interest in doing this idea, but my partner and I give each other massages and it’s great! Its obviously not quite as relaxing as going to get a massage, but we get to do it reasonably frequently cause it’s much easier logistically and now that there’s a pandemic, much more feasible overall. And obviously cheaper. All you need is massage oil! If you’ve gotten enough massages, it’s not too hard to remember what they did / watch a youtube video or two and learn. I’ve been pleasantly surprised at how quickly my partner improved.

    Not saying I would never want a professional massage again, but these are a great stand-in most of the time. I’ll note that this is because we both have shoulder / back / neck tightness which is pretty easy to address as an amateur πŸ™‚

  • Reply Erin November 6, 2020 at 12:34 pm

    Yeahhh, I went ahead and had a sports massage a couple months ago. BUT I had some pretty bad postpartum back pain and the case count here was acceptable. It was a sports massage-specific facility which somehow made me feel better about this decision and we both wore a mask the entire time–I wore a work-issued surgical mask. Sadly, the current case count is too high for me to comfortably go again. There HAS to be an outdoor massage somewhere near you in FL.

  • Reply Lisa November 6, 2020 at 3:03 pm

    That’s my number one missed activity with COVID…massages! But you’re totally right, too risky right now. I used to do a Restorative Yoga class that included Thai Massage. It was heaven. Sadly, my studio has had to close down permanently as a result of COVID.
    I think outdoor services is a great idea. Pedicures and manicures would be fun outside as well! Well, for FL I guess.
    I’m in Canada, haha.

  • Reply Coco November 6, 2020 at 4:11 pm

    i love essentialism both the book and the podcast! it really simplifies decision making. And I also enjoyed the whole food CEO interview in freak economics! sounds like a cool guy. It made me think about conscious leadership a lot yesterday.

  • Reply Angie November 6, 2020 at 5:49 pm

    I miss massages so much! Especially since I carry stress in my shoulders and this whole year has been stressful. I did splurge on an electronic neck massager and I love it. It’s nice to use for 10-20 min at the end of the night.

  • Reply Perfectly Cromulent Name November 9, 2020 at 11:38 am

    My kingdom for a massage! My shoulders just seize up and massage keeps that from becoming unmanageable, but I have not had one since March. Yoga and stretching and rollout out has helped, but I really, REALLY need someone who knows what they are doing to get in there!

    I loved Essentialism, but I also think it was written for people who have a lot more control over their work lives than I do who are much higher up on the ladder. (I’d consider myself solidly mid level, and I am not management.) I do have some control, and I used the Essentialism lessons for those parts. I’ve also let a lot of things go that I suspected were just done “just because” and so far it’s working out. It’s been YEARS, so I think I’m safe. πŸ™‚ But yes- the “do just the fun stuff!” is not practical, because some of the most important parts of my job are not enjoyable, but it has to get done anyway, and I currently cannot delegate anything. For real. I am a department of one with a specialized role.

    I was not aware there was a podcast- I’ll check it out!

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