Now I Can Breathe

Heading across the Mall for a happy hour with the managers in town, I glanced over at the Washington Monument, and just had to snap these shots of a view that momentarily took my breath away.

We had the union in this week, along with some of our key field managers. It was also my last week before fall vacation, which I have needed so badly. The pressures of my job have really had their way with me, these past three months since we last vacated.

As is often the case, at the beginning of the week, I worried that I would not get everything done that I needed to get done before vacation started. I also worried about how mine, and my staff’s, presentations would go with both groups that were in town. We had significant time on both itineraries, and it wasn’t too long ago that I had been called on the carpet for both my staff, and myself, not showing up adequately prepared for meetings.

Granted, that was a couple months ago, and a wake-up call that I took to heart. I began cleaning up my own act, which had grown a little shabby around the edges, and implored my folks to step up their game. It wasn’t really them — it was me. Folks follow the leader, and if the leader is off, the organization gets a little off, as well. I’ve seen how that works, from both ends of the equation.

It wound up being a banner week. Each presentation was succinct, timely, interactive, and productive — decisions got made with each group as a result of the collaborative presentations, which made me quite pleased. Our customers (the District Managers and the Union Presidents) were pleased, as well.

I got all my other work done, well ahead of time. I got my own performance evaluation, which I also worried some about — were they seeing the progress that I was feeling? It couldn’t have gone better. I got some great feedback that told me things were more than on track, they saw things going to a new level this year, thanks to my leadership. I hadn’t expected it to go that well!

I’d scheduled Friday off, but had really thought I’d wind up having to work it. I was able to take that day off, to begin my decompression. I really didn’t do much yesterday, besides beginning to shift into vacation mode. Today, I am there.

I wasn’t sure how well this one would turn out — turned out to be the best of the shots.

Another trip down to our happy place, a week at the Old Key West resort in Walt Disney World, with our son and his partner and his partner’s family, a week to relax and enjoy eating our way around the world at Epcot’s Food and Wine Festival. It might well be my favorite time of year to go down there. The weather’s just right, not too God-awful crowded, and taking it all at a very relaxed pace.

Just what the doctor ordered. I won’t be thinking about work, much, if at all. I know it will all be there upon my return, and I have renewed confidence in my leadership team to keep it all on track.

It’s been a tough, stressful year, in many ways. I feel like I’ve been through the roughest patches of it, and am now relaxing into the home stretch. It feels good to have made it here, in one piece, and seeing things finally falling together.

Now, I can breathe!

One clap, two clap, three clap, forty?

By clapping more or less, you can signal to us which stories really stand out.