Yesterday (Wednesday, July 16, 2014, to be exact and to be ever etched on my mind), I made a mistake. And not just one mistake. Actually, I made several. And all of them in public. Vis a vis my blog.
Mistake #1: Multitasking. I’ve never ever been good at multitasking. In fact, I hate multitasking (my hatred of it in direct proportion to the current societal expectations that I will engage in it). Yet, at work I do it all the time. If I’m looking up, say, ICD-9 diagnosis codes on the internet, well, hell, I’ll just pop over to my personal email account for a quick look.
Mistake #2: Checking my personal email at work, regardless of device. At best, checking my email will distract me even more than I already am because I might find a message from a friend and so respond, and in the process of responding forget about the task I was supposed to be working on. At worst, all I see is “junk” email and I get depressed.
Mistake #3: Not paying attention (due to multitasking) to which email account I was logging into. I was in the middle of writing a SQL query when a thought about my blog popped into my head and so, of course, I decided to take a quick look at my email. Apparently, I logged into my email account with my blog name, forgetting that I actually have an email account with my blog name. One that I have not checked in over a year. Do you see where I am going with this?
Mistake #4: Having a meltdown. I can choose whether or not to have a meltdown. It doesn’t always feel like I can choose, but I can. When I saw the strange organization of my email account, lists of subscription emails that I thought I had turned off months ago, nothing in my Trash folder and everything on my Primary tab and Gmail acting like it’s a brand-new day in email management … I yielded to the usual anger and angst that I experience whenever I think technology is failing me. Hence, the meltdown.
Mistake #5: Making my meltdown public. As I wrote in yesterday’s blog post (thank god I used my WP app on my iPad so I kept it (relatively) short), a little voice in the back of my head warned, “Don’t publish. Don’t publish.” I’ve written blog posts before that I’ve left in draft and either published much later or just deleted. I could have done the same here. I should have done the same.
If you’ve gotten this far, then you understand that my primary Gmail account (marieannbailey) is really okay. Yes, it has those annoying tabs that really don’t help me in organizing (especially since sometimes Gmail forgets which tab a message should go to), but I had adapted. And that change was a year ago. What I saw yesterday was a different email account that I had forgotten about and so it was not yet organized.
When people started to comment on my blog and nobody complained of having the exact same problem, that’s when I slowly started to realize that I might have made a effing ass of myself. Well, we should learn from our mistakes, right? I thought about deleting yesterday’s post and just saying, “What? Who me? Meltdown in public? Never!” But if I could erase every mistake I’ve ever made, I’d never learn anything.
There is an upside to all this. I’ve found a few things to be thankful for. I have a friend who makes a point of being thankful for something, even when her day totally sucks. You should check out her blog. She’s a good example of how to find the positive in a world of negatives.
So, taking a cue from Pamela, here’s what I’m thankful for after making an effing ass of myself in public:
- Yoga: Wednesday night is Flow and Meditation class. 45 minutes of vigorous flow followed by 30 minutes of meditation. I started class feeling angry with myself and ended with acceptance of myself.
- Gmail: I still don’t care for their email management, but at least it wasn’t Gmail that messed up, it was me.
- My online friends: I am most thankful for the wonderful friends I have here, and all of you who rallied support, offering me suggestions and/or empathy. Because of you, I have some ideas for how to improve my email management. I also suspect that you all are more forgiving of me than I am of myself.
So, false alarm. Gmail is not challenging my sanity. I’m perfectly capable of doing that to myself without any technological assistance.
Cheers and TGI(almost)F!
Marie A Bailey
Writer, blogger, knitter, cat lover, and introvert.