Imagined Pressure

grayscale photo of person covering his face with balloon

Photo by Vijay Sadasivuni on

Billing regulations in healthcare change all the time.  Most organizations have been working on a project that would impact billing requirements effective January of 2021.  It’s nothing new for organizations to be a little behind the ball in catching up with those requirements (and we were no exception) so we had been collectively stressing out over the last few months as we’ve been trying to implement and test this so we didn’t see a financial hit next year.  It was announced today that they wouldn’t be putting it into effect until 2022.  The enormous relief could be felt as the weight fell off of the building’s shoulders.

Good Lord, the unnecessary pressure we put on ourselves.  We create these arbitrary deadlines for even more arbitrary reasons and essentially make ourselves sick to complete a task at an imaginary point in time.  For what?  We don’t only do this with business either—we do it in our own lives.  “I have to lose 20 pounds by next month so I’ll look good enough for xyz,” or “I have to know what I want to do with the rest of my life by the time I’m 18 so I can study in college and pretend I know what I’m doing by 22.” Sound familiar?

Perhaps it’s the natural push of time that drives us to fit as much as we can in while we can but I find it more likely that we are pretty masochistic creatures.  We TORTURE ourselves constantly for no other reason than we create standards that no one can really meet and we didn’t meet them.  I mean, kudos to us for having imagination and high hopes, but damn.  We know how to make ourselves miserable.  It’s almost laughable.  Every scenario we have been in where we felt absolutely distraught was at least, in some part, our own doing.  I’m not talking deaths of loved ones or any type of grave illness, of course not, but the drama.  Whew do we love the drama.

Maybe life was too simple and too plain and maybe we got bored and decided that the commercial way of living was more fun.  And it is too a degree.  There’s a thrill in the chase of something we want.  However, we let the distraction get to us and then the game became a way of life as we took it more and more seriously.  Then it began to take over life.  Now life is precious second to our businesses and we are the commodities.  All of this derived from choices we made.

If I’ve learned anything from the work I’ve done for nearly 20 years, it’s that choice is everything.  It’s as simple and as difficult as making a different choice.  We all want the power and the perks but we don’t want the accountability of what comes with the unknown—and the natural world just doesn’t work that way.  But the risk is worth it.  We can sit here and create a false sense of pressure on ourselves (which will feel all too real to our brains) or we can begin to re-evaluate.  And I feel the rumblings now as the voices of those unheard for too long are finally and blessedly growing loud enough to be heard by all.  The revolution is in redefining the way we roll—and the role we choose play.  Enough people stop playing the game and we can create some new rules, or at least make room for new players to spice up the field.

Let’s start by being a little gentler on ourselves.  Be kinder to our hearts and minds.  Let’s cultivate some peace in our own worlds and start to spread that to others.  When the mind slows down enough more solutions become clear.  We all get clear enough we can start creating more questions to tackle together.  And with more questions, we look at things differently and maybe change some perspectives.  How revolutionary.

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