How’s the view from the Rabbit Hole?
My reading glasses just snapped into two pieces. They’re not the kind that are supposed to.
I was in the online meeting room at the right time this morning, but the presenter wasn’t.
The too-cute-not-to-get baby gift I was excited to buy will be too small by the time the COVID-19 quarantine is over.
When I opened the refrigerator in hopes of finding something amazing to nibble on, the carefully saved homemade sauce from the Mexican takeout restaurant leapt to its demise.
Canceling clients ask me how I’m doing.
The same as they are: Sometimes, things are just varying degrees of hard.
I organize and coach clients, which means I’m a sounding board, confidante, consultant, director, planner, support staff, teacher, instructor, and occasionally, a commiserator when it’s helpful. My motto is, “Teach, Help, Hug.”
People occasionally comment about how they think I have it all together. Whether by fact or self-delusion on my part, I can say that’s mostly true. But like anyone else, I’m a work in progress and not immune to stepping into holes occasionally.
But what they’re really seeing is someone who knows ways to climb out of the rabbit holes, which is what they hire me for: to help them learn to do it better.
With apologies to bunnies, Rabbit Hole Days are when the papers pile up on the desk at work, when the emails become one big demand, when the sink is never empty, and the best thing that was in the fridge is now on the floor. They’re when you want to make a change or proceed with a project, and you don’t know where to start.
They are the days and times when things are just crappy, and thoughts chase themselves around the bottom of the shaft in an attempt to get peace and clarity. Or they’re utterly dull, and you can't muster any motivation.
When I was a kid and whined, “I’m bored!” my mother had what I now know was good advice, “That’s OK, go sit in a chair and be bored.” My kids hated it when I said it.
What I learned, and I hope they and my clients do too, is how to recognize bored, see a rough time as just that, and to understand the steps needed to focus not on the dark narrowness of the bottom of the hole, but the daylight and passing clouds at the top of the shaft.
That with direction, patience, and support, papers can be sorted, emails answered or deleted, dishes washed, employees trained, procedures written, and frustrating jobs traded for others.
Sometimes climbing out of the rabbit hole simply means distracting yourself long enough to find the good, like when someone doesn’t leave the toilet paper holder empty.
Or simply, that for the time being, you don’t have to go from store to store to find any.
Personal crisis times are a little different from simple Rabbit Hole Days. Read this article from GoodTherapy.org on how to manage during those times.