One Hundred and Ten Percent, You Say?

Posted by Michelle Wheatley on

It used to boggle me when people would say that they gave it their 110%. If someone was giving it their all, wouldn't that be just 100%? How could it possibly be more than all that they could give?

This was my thinking, pre-pregnancy. I was a bit of a workaholic. Whatever effort it would take to complete a task, I would do my darnedest to make it happen: work late, get in early, log on during the weekends. Just get it done. Then something happened.

I was about halfway into my first trimester, and all was going well with my pregnancy. There was a work task that I was determined to finish, so I stayed at the office, as per usual when something needed to be completed. It wasn't even crazy late - perhaps around 6 or 6:30 - and I suddenly felt weird. It was an unexpected wave of nausea, exhaustion and a mild yet frightening "something isn't right" feeling. So I emailed my boss and told him I'd finish said task the next day.

Fortunately, I was able to go home and rest away that feeling. From then on out, I made myself leave the office at a good time, even if I felt fine. I distanced myself from the office politics to keep as zen as possible. I changed my baseline for how much effort I was okay with doing to stay relaxed while pregnant.

In changing my baseline, I was able to still feel like I was giving it my (revised) 100%. Looking back, I am happy with the work I did during those months. Sure, I could've done more, would've done more if I wasn't pregnant. But I have zero regrets.

I'm not clear on what my baseline is anymore. There are no set office hours when you run your own business from home. There's a laundry list of stuff I want to get done to further promote my business. I know I have to pace myself to keep moving forward and yet to keep a healthy balance in my life. I'm just not sure yet what that pace is.

I feel like I'm catching my stride whenever I get a new visitor to my website, secure a new email address for my distribution list or, better yet, make a sale. It's when things are quiet on those fronts that I just want to sprint through my to-do list.

At this point, I can better understand the world's 110 percent-ers. Or I can at least speculate as to where they're coming from. Maybe they are giving 10% more effort than they had done, or 10% more than the average bear. Or, it could be that they have their acceptable baseline and they're pushing themselves beyond it, for better or for worse.

Are you a 110 percent-er? If so, do tell - what do you mean? Inquiring minds want to know!

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