Brain Dead

Vincent Van Gogh

Work has broken my brain. The pathways have been fundamentally changed. Knocked off course.

I am a writer, and I need to find a groove to write, that cozy pocket where everything becomes hazy and the words flow from my fingertips. I've always been able to quickly make my way into the pocket, but lately, working in a super-fast, everything-is-urgent corporate environment, the pocket has been torn away.

I can't put headphones on and even attempt to focus, because I have to take them off every 60-seconds to go to a meeting. Answer the phone. Drive to another meeting. And another meeting. Answer questions. Team huddle. Training. Time for your next meeting, Erik.

It's incessant.

As a result, my brain has been changing, and not in a good way. I'm able to multi-task better than ever, bouncing between blips like Tom Cruise in "Minority Report." I snap between tabs, reading snippets of 15 articles all at once, reading a few pages of a book and then snapping back to another shiny new task. But writing? Sitting down for 5, 6, 8 hours in a row? Good fucking luck.

I can hardly sit still these days. I'm anxious all the time. Give me more data, give me more noise, fill my brain with traffic. Refresh, refresh, refresh. I'm utterly insatiable. Coming from an environment where every response is urgent, everything has to be resolved ASAP, you start to expect it from your personal life, too. That's been every day of my work-life for the past two months, why wouldn't it be the same at home?

A series of fire drills chained together into one long, incessant drone.

It's time for a change. Time to distance myself from the work-self and embrace the shunned writer-self. It means writing bullshit posts like this one--brain dumps--just to get the ROAD CLOSED signs taken down and the story-laden pathways reopened. It means whining and complaining and stomping my feet because I refuse to accept a task-based life.

One manuscript in the can and another first draft 90% complete.