I grew more and more frustrated as I stared at the sky, trying to relax on a beach chair on a cloudy-but-warm Daytona Beach day. It was my first time off in about three years, but I was beyond restless.
I’d been going non-stop, 24/7 for the last three years: most recently on the campaign trail, at Standing Rock, and in Flint and East Chicago. But before then, I’d been hauling ass for two years; writing full time and networking like a mother fucker in order to get myself out of the corporate media prison and into something closer to who I was, like The Young Turks.
I was burnt out—and suddenly it hit me that I was incapable of truly just being. I couldn’t fall asleep on the beach chair or quiet my mind. I’d been going 120 miles per hour for the last year: racing through Iowa, New Hampshire, South Carolina, and all the other campaign stops while building TYT Politics with nowhere near enough help. My mind had become wired to always be doing: tweeting, publishing videos, tweeting some more, reading YouTube comments, texting with sources, calling sources, and everything job related. If I’m being honest, the job had become me because I didn’t see it as a job—I saw it as my purpose on this great Earth.
So here I was, laying on a beach chair, trying to catch up on sleep, and failing miserably. My brain just wouldn’t stop racing. I thought about close friends I’d fallen out of touch with due to being married to my work. I started fixating on my breakup six months before—this was the first time I was slowing down—or trying to—and didn’t have anything to distract me from the disappointment and heartache of losing someone I loved and saw a future with. I started the woe-is-me part of the program where I compared myself to my best friends who were all either married, getting married, or moving in with their girlfriends. Overall, instead of chilling on the beach drinking fruity Floridian drinks, I was taking an upside-down rollercoaster ride in my head.
And then I got a call that took me out of my head—and away from my vacation.