Massively, Massively Overwhelmed.

Life is good right now, so why can’t I let myself enjoy it? I have a new job, a new apartment with my not-so-new boyfriend, I’m moving up in the world, I’m excited about all the opportunities on the table, and yet I can’t just pause to relax and enjoy the present. I can’t take a week to just stop and reset. Instead, I feel like I have to close a thousand loose ends at my old company. At some point I guess I just need to walk away. But that’s hard for me. I know any projects I leave unfinished will remain that way. I like completion.

So how do I stop being so damn anxious all the time and just learn to enjoy life? It goes by fast and I’m watching it blur before my eyes. I want to take two weeks to go on a road trip and not have to worry about work or think about work projects, but unfortunately that won’t be possible as I start my new job pretty much right away. I don’t know when the next time I’ll have any real time off between projects will be. Probably when (if) I have a kid, and that certainly won’t be time to hit the road and drive to anywhere. This is it. This is really my 30s. This is feeling all the opportunity in the world as a pressure pushing down on me, trapping me, yet allowing me to fly.

Health issues seem to be nothing concerning — my MRI came back normal (phew) and the EEG results are still TBD, but probably also nothing. It’s all likely some bad anxiety causing weird physical symptoms. Yes, I’m a weirdo. We all knew that. Curious if the EEG will identify anything strange. I felt some sort of reaction in my head to the strobe light test but
I was probably imagining it. I also failed at falling asleep during the part of the test when I’m supposed to sleep (they give you 10 minutes to fall asleep and people are walking by talking loudly in the hallway. Uhhhh….)

Anyway. My job ends tomorrow, but my boss asked me to do a small thing for him on Saturday. Well, really he posed this thing as a favor to me which – it is an opportunity to network with someone who I should know – but also is really still work for my company which I will have officially left. I’ve asked for an extension of my email account as I want to finish some projects. To be fair, I did probably procrastinate a bit this quarter as I was super anxious and depressed, so I owe it to my company to wrap up what I committed to. Or do I? Not everyone would care about finishing projects when they are leaving. I just don’t want to leave on a sour note.

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6 thoughts on “Massively, Massively Overwhelmed.”

  1. Hi,
    I was fortunate enough to find your blog, and after reading a few posts I wanted to reach out to you. I can’t help but be sorely impressed with your ability to set a goal and accomplish it, I doubt I’m the only one who feels the same.

    I don’t know if this is appropriate to ask, especially after reading how overwhelmed you are – but I’m in desperate need of some guidance. I don’t have parents to ask, or friends to talk to that can relate to my situation. Yahoo answers is a you know what, and financial forums seem like a maze. I have a hard time trusting people in suits, but hate myself for letting my savings sit idly in the bank. I have no clue what I’m doing when it comes to investing, but saving is not an issue.

    For a quick background, 22 years old, served two years in the Army, left with an honorable discharge and a few medical problems. Not sure if you’ve heard of the VA claims process, but it moves at three speeds – slow, slower, and standstill. After three years, my claim was approved. The claim was back-paid to the day I left the Army. After COLA adjustments, the overall amount was $82,500. I went from not knowing if I was going to eat or pay rent, to living comfortably and growing a strong desire to keep it that way. Don’t take that as “I want VA money forever” – for a long time I was disgusted with myself for even having the problems I deal with. I have since realized that I need to focus on treatment and re-training, and believe me the day I can go back to work I will do so proudly.

    I spent some money on basics, $3000 towards outside treatment, a new bed, TV, laptop, etc. I still have $75,000 and the money has been in the bank for about six months now. I receive $2860 monthly, but recently won a case for my Fathers retirement benefits. Once finalized, the new amount will be about $4500 a month. The back-pay will be about $20,000, and I’ll be saving at least $2000 a month. My savings should total about $100k in a few months. I’m not sure if I should buy a house and car, or continue renting and invest. Buying a house and car is simple/seems rewarding, but will likely be short lived and leave me with little savings. My credit is shot after the rough patch, so loaning and investing is not an option.

    I’m sorry that this is so long, but I really need some advice on what to do. I don’t mind if it takes you a long time to get back to me – if you feel uncomfortable giving me “mission-specific” advice, I understand. I need a game plan and you seem like an amazing person to ask. If you can help, please let me know – either on here, or through Facebook/Gmail. Thank you, and take care!

    1. Hi Zak, I’m not HECC, but if I were in your shoes here’s what I would do and the questions I would have (based on the info I have here):

      With the $75,000 in cash you have right now
      1. If your back-pay counts as “earned income,” put $5,500 into the 2013 Roth IRA and $5,500 into the 2014 Roth IRA. This will get you started on retirement, and with the Roth you can always withdraw contributions penalty-free, which means it’s an emergency emergency fund. By the way, you can still invest no matter what your credit. You have to rebuild your credit before you can get loans. Then set aside another $5,500 for 2015 Roth IRA.
      2. Put $10,000 into a checking account. This is your emergency fund.
      3. Do you have a job? Have you figured out what you want to do for a career? Do you need education to pursue said career path? I would set aside some money for these purposes.
      4. Car – do you need a car? If yes, I’d set aside $10K to buy an used car that is reliable and relatively gas efficient.
      5. Do you have any debt? If yes, pay those off in the order of highest interest rate to lowest.

      On-going cash flow
      6. How long will the $4,500/month payments last for? 5 years? 10 years? forever? That will affect what you can/should do with your money right now.

  2. Change makes most people anxious. Whether it is a job change or a residence change… causes upheaval and uncertainty. Perhaps you also feel somewhat guilty over your success, wondering if you deserve it. Try to accept these feelings as normal and then just be grateful for your blessings.

  3. It can be hard to leave if you have invested in yet-to-be-completed projects. But, you also need to keep your own mental health in mind. Don’t be too hard on yourself. It naturally takes a while to adjust to a new normal. Thanks for sharing!

  4. I’d feel bad about walking away from a job leaving things unfinished, but that’s the ‘human factor’ and what notice periods are for. If there’s not enough time for handover, it probably shows how unique/overworked you are and how unprepared they are for the inevitable.

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