Sang Froid

I prefer to play a good game of offense rather than needing to rely on defense because a strategy wasn’t formed or executed well in the outset. I have become attuned to finding and using opportunities to prevent disaster long before it happens. I love to consult on scenarios to help improve possible outcomes. I can see angles, moving parts and pieces that no one else catches. I can extrapolate results based on proposed actions to determine missing links or loopholes. I can calculate whether or not a project has enough material support to succeed before it’s attempted, and make sure all the necessary steps are accounted for.  I can determine if a proposal is feasible, and whether or not it meets criteria to accomplish its goal.

The world has a lot of things that need doing, and I’m in it for the long haul. I can and often do pick up the slack in the rigging so we don’t have trouble with the sails. I can work lengthy, grueling hours day after day, with no days off in-between. I can get up before the birds, or go to bed when they’re heralding the sun’s arrival, or do both back to back. I can take a nap and then do another shift, with just a few hour’s notice. I can work two jobs, come home, and still get up in the middle of the night for my child or partner. I can be woken early to help solve a problem, or kept up late working on resolution and still make it to work on time. I can even handle having my breaks dominated by other people’s personal problems (or my own), just to go back to my shift and work longer.

I can tell when things are going bad, and often bring a stop to it, if people cooperate. When things go wrong, people look my way, and I am normally prepared to handle it. In a crisis I’m somewhat of a superhero. I jump into action, make sound decisions, and move forward quickly to minimize harm done. I can set aside my pain or frustration as long as it takes to stop things from spiraling and get them back under control again. If people work with me, I can coordinate a concerted effort that can respond to an incident with a united front. I’m amazing at mitigating damage in the short term as well as the long.

I can determine consequences and repercussions, but I prefer to use that skill for active prevention. I am great at negotiating priorities and drilling down to core issues to get them resolved before they cause problems. I can keep a discussion on topic and make sure it addresses logistical concerns. I can help people gain perspective, and interpret possible motivations. I can remind people of the big picture, and help them refocus on the issues at hand. I can help people move past roadblocks and setbacks to complete necessary tasks. I’m great at making sure a job is completed, at least in my work (not so much in my hobbies, of course.)

The silly thing is, when all’s said and done, the smoke has cleared, the dust has settled, and everyone’s on their way home…

That’s when my heart takes over, and tells my mind to wait. That’s when I look around and make sure the world is still standing, that way I know I can fall apart now. And fall apart I always do, as without fail the stress and anxiety finally overwhelm me in the aftermath. Long after it’s all over, my mind closes the barn doors, so I can cry in peace in quiet. At that point it’s not that I don’t know it’s all been resolved. I made sure of it myself. Ensuring that everything is all taken care of is the only real way I can go through mourning and arrive at acceptance.

It’s not much of a surprise to those who know me that I suck at being happy or recreational for very long. That said, I’m a workhorse, always have been and always will be. I get shit done, and I prefer it that way – any day of the week.


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