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Dark was Night

We’ve all had those days, haven’t we? The days when it feels like the universe has conspired against us. The days when the coffee machine malfunctions ☕, the alarm clock betrays us ⏰, and our cat decides to take a stroll on our path 🐱 Those are the days we label as “terrible.” Skipped over for a promotion? . Got the flu? Stuck in traffic? Oh, that’s definitely a terrible day.

Are they really terrible days, or have we merely adopted the habit of slapping the “terrible” label on any inconvenience that comes our way? Or are we in a constant state of overlooking our true emotions? 🤔

In a world where genuine struggles with mental health persist, it’s crucial to pause and reassess our perception of what it means to be truly ‘healthy.’ Often, we’ve grown so accustomed to saying ‘I’m fine’ that we forget there might be an underlying pain we’re neglecting. It can sneak its way into moments when you’re playing with your child or engaged in a discussion with your friends 💭

In my 12 years of navigating the choppy waters 🌊 of the corporate world, I’ve seen many different facets of life. I’ve worked for three very different organizations, each with its unique culture and challenges. Yet, there’s one common thread that ties them all together – the heartbeat of these organizations is their people 💜

On this Mental Health Week, I want to take you back to a time in my career when uncertainty hung heavy in the air. It was in one of my early roles, where, in addition to my regular responsibilities in business partnering for more than 750+ employees spanned across the region, I was entrusted with an additional, highly sensitive task – managing the bench.

In corporate lingo, the “bench” refers to employees who, for one reason or another, find themselves without an active project that matches their skill set. The rule was simple: anyone who crossed the 90-day threshold on the bench had to be informed that their journey with the company was coming to an end. It was my duty to deliver this news, over and over again, a daunting task I would repeat nearly 200 times I may not have been as smooth as George Clooney, but I came pretty darn close to channeling his calmness in the midst of it all.

Each person had a unique story to tell, and yet, the outcome was invariably the same. Or at least, it didn’t have to be. It was a challenging, sensitive responsibility that weighed heavily on my shoulders. I had to be the bearer of bad news, a messenger of change, and a source of hope all at once.

But here’s the part that still warms my heart: many of those individuals I had to let go are still in touch with me today. I became a small but significant part of their new beginnings in different firms ♥ Some of the recommendations I made worked wonders, helping them navigate the corridors of the corporate world. Others simply found their way on their own.

Yet, despite the silver linings, at the end of that project, I was mentally drained, and, more often than not, I’d lay awake at night, feeling a profound sense of sadness and frustration. It took an immense toll on my psyche 😐 Midway through, I realized the project was weighing heavily on me, but I soldiered on, putting on a facade of ‘everything’s fine.’ I was juggling both roles, working closely with people, yet somehow drifting farther from myself. Those 200+ cases were amicably closed and targets were met but I couldn’t escape the feeling that something inside me had changed, morphing into a heavy cynicism. That’s when it hit me: it’s perfectly okay to admit that we’re not okay.

It’s a story about those moments when everything seems to be going wrong, the storm clouds gather, and you find yourself wondering, “Is it ever going to get better?”

7 years down the line, as I reflect upon that challenging experience, I can’t help but smile. Yes, the task was undeniably tough and sometimes bitter, but successfully managing a significant bench not only allowed me to handle difficult conversations but also enabled be to value more about mental health.

You see, the corporate world is a stormy sea, and each of us is trying to steer our ship to safety. Sometimes, we’re faced with situations that make us feel like we’re caught in a never-ending storm, and it’s okay not to be okay in those moments. It’s okay to feel the weight of our responsibilities and the impact they have on others.

But, my friends, it’s never okay to not talk about it or to give up 💜

In the most trying of times, seek help if required to find our strength. I know I did and it was because of my family and close friend I felt sane.

It seems okay now, doesn’t it? Flood in the kitchen, poison oak fight that leaves you shaking with rage. Would it help if we could see what else was coming?

So, as we reflect on Mental Health Week, remember that life isn’t about avoiding the storms; it’s about dancing in the rain. It’s about recognizing that it’s okay to be not okay at times, but it’s never okay to give up on yourself or the people whose are close to you.

Cheers,

BibliophileParul

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Stronger Together!

Hey there, I'm Parul, working in one of the Big 4s of consulting! 💼

By day, I'm decoding the business matrix, but by night, I transform into a book ninja, stealthily navigating the worlds crafted by the greatest authors📚✨

 

What's the secret sauce to my consulting wizardry, you ask? It's the lessons learned from the pages of both leadership meetings, strategies and bestselling novels 😉

 

I'm not just crunching numbers; I'm crunching captivating narratives 💖

Buckle up for insights that transcend industries and a blog where business acumen meets the magic of storytelling

 

#ConsultantLife #BusinessAndBooks 🌟
 

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