Feeling Overwhelmed

Feeling Overwhelmed

I’ve been stressed out the past few weeks. Isn’t funny how life always finds a way to replace old problems with new ones? Just as my back finally got fixed and I was so excited to be engaged, new stresses emerged. Largely, two reoccurring antagonists in my life made their appearances.

The bad neighbor: I’ve been pretty lucky when it comes to neighbors, about every other set is nice and considerate. Our man upstairs has just been getting louder and louder since he moved in a few weeks ago. And not only does his night owl nature keep us up past our bedtime, his recently installed bird feeder ensures that we’ll be woken up at 5:30 am by huge flocks of pigeons and finches. I keep text messaging him to turn the TV and stereo down, but that is mostly just frustrating to both of us. I’m exhausted and starting to look at top-floor apartment listings on HousingMaps.

The office bully: I’ve also had about 50% luck on this. I have a mean co-worker who was just hired a few weeks ago and has been driving me crazy. I’m thinking about finding another job. But aren’t the chances pretty high that I’ll only be trading the current bully for a new bully? I’ve rarely met someone who works in an office of more than 5 people without one co-worker being a little “off.”

I tried to work-out my stress at the gym last night but it didn’t help much. I’ve also tried baths and spa therapy without much luck. Being sleep deprived isn’t doing much for my overall emotional stability. I’m thinking it’s time for a vacation 🙂

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There are 15 comments for this article
  1. Leslie at 10:50 pm

    try chocolate. or cleaning.
    both work for me. 🙂
    good luck.

  2. Elizabeth at 11:09 pm

    you’ve may have already been through this, but does the upstairs neighbor have carpet? If not, you (or your landlord) can force him to get it. I think in San Francisco at least 80% of the floor in an upper unit has to be carpeted according to housing code. Helps *a lot* with noise transference. I’m also feeling like he can probably be made to get rid of the bird feeder.

    Work bully . . . ugh. Let me know if you find a solution to that one. The best I’ve come up with is the old smile and ignore, but sometimes it’s just not enough.

  3. Nicole at 11:16 pm

    try more drinking. i have a friend that may be able to get you some wine.

  4. Mary at 2:46 am

    Aw, hang in there! If a vacation isn’t in the cards, I hope a lazy weekend is, at the least. Of course, I guess that doesn’t help much with the neighbor situation. Do you want us to start sending texts on your behalf?

  5. Tonia Conger at 3:28 am

    I’m with you on the office bully. Mine happens to be the VP of marketing and he really has it out for me. Unless you love your job, I’d suggest finding a new one. The market is so great right now and maybe the new bully won’t work directly with you. I’m going to try my luck as well. I hate bullies. They always ruin a perfectly good day.

  6. mamacita at 4:24 am

    I like waking up to the sounds of birds, but I can also see why it would bother you. You could try putting out a rubber snake near the feeder; sometimes that will scare the birds away. And maybe your neighbor will catch the hint.

  7. love.boxes at 1:41 pm

    Sorry. Both of those things really stink. 🙁 I’ve had both of those problems before, but I did not deal very gracefully with either. Hope you find a better way. Best Wishes.

  8. hyb at 2:32 pm

    Sorry to hear that you’re having some stressful days…. Now’s the time to learn how to deal with people of this sort, though. You’ll have people like this pop up around you no matter where you live or work, and it shouldn’t be you changing your situation because they’re doing something wrong. Confrontation is not something most of us are comfortable with, but trust me, sooner or later, it won’t be that easy to move or change jobs, so it’s best to learn how to talk to/ignore these people now

  9. Beth at 6:32 pm

    I had a similar dilemma last year – I got a new apartment and a new job! Probably not always the smartest move, but I figured I couldn’t be unhappy at home AND work, only one at a time!

  10. Julie at 11:53 pm

    Getting married…..looking for another apartment…..and looking for another job!!! WOW! That is a lot. My best wishes and prayers go out to you.

  11. Mildred at 7:32 am

    Emily! One of my best friends on earth is named Emily and so I was inspired to write you. I JUST listened to a radio program that talks about bullies. One of the BEST things you can do is confront him. Not in a offensive or defensive way mind you but in a neutral way. Even though it is NOT fun to talk to people about “touchy” topics, this can clear the air. If you simply express that you feel a little anger/hate/snarky-ness/ (however he may be bullying you) comeing from him and you were wondering what that was about. Generally if you do things like this in a very neutral way, people GENERALLY won’t come back on the offense (that would make them look crazy, b/c you have been so mature,adult, and kind) and perhaps you can understand why he is the way is. If it doesn’t work out, then in the end it may just get worse and that would be a good clue to you if perhaps it is a good time to job hunt. CONGRATS on your wedding!!!! It will all work out in the end – It always does =)

  12. Anonymous at 6:22 pm

    Hi Emily,

    I read your blog regularly (love it) and was so glad to come across this entry!

    I have 3 of them at the moment. All brand spankin’ new superiors in a clique with each other and the coordinator they brought on. I’m the only other person in the department, so that leaves me out completely. The nit-picking, talking behind my back (they belittled another manager for complimenting my work, for instance), constant exclusions and unfriendliness towards me are driving me crazy! It feels like they are trying to get me to leave.

    I am now in a constant state of fear at a job I once felt safe and secure at. But, I don’t want to budge because I believe in the company, I love my work there, I have many friends there and, well, there aren’t many design jobs around town right now and as a single mother that is a scary situation.

    I can’t confront them on this because whenever I tried to voice my concern over something in the past they have cut me off and told me they don’t care, doesn’t matter or just literaly turned their backs on me, if not turning whatever I said completely around on me.

    I don’t know what to do and was just wondering how you handled the attacks from your bully while they worked with you.

  13. Alana Gorecki at 6:37 pm

    We don’t have control over who our co-workers will be. That’s why have to be physically, emotionally, and mentally prepared to accept the different kinds of people you’ll meet along the way. Trust yourself and be confident that you can protect yourself! Also, never hesitate to call the attention of your superiors about bullying incidents and let them do something about it.