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Friday(ish) roundup: Performance, Anxiety Edition

Posted by Robin Abrahams  May 4, 2013 04:37 PM

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In February, in dear-God-we-were-so-young-then February, I dared to write that 2013 was shaping up to be a mad, immoderate, lurchy year. Obviously, I wasn't to know the half of it.

Can I blame the crazy end-times feeling of the year for the feeling I have, too, of constantly pinballing from one deadline or bout of illness or major trip (his, mine, or ours) to the next? Or is that just life, the thing that happens while you're making other plans? I pointed out to a friend recently that she "has it all" more than any woman I know. And she laughed and conked her head on the table and said "Dear God" like I knew she would, like any of us would, even though she's a wise and grateful person and knows that she has a wonderful life: a good marriage, smart loving kids, a fulfilling part-time career, weekends full of art and science and family projects. And of course she feels like she's running around putting out fires and satisfying completely irrational demands and thinking about the next three tasks on her to-do list instead of the one she's actually doing.

Even the most meaningful and dignified life probably feels absurd a good deal of the time.

Some days I'm not sure if pushing back against that feeling of absurdity is the right path or not. Is it striving for greater mindfulness, or striving to look like a woman in a coffee commercial? 

This blog is not written or edited by Boston.com or the Boston Globe.
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About Miss Conduct
Welcome to Miss Conduct’s blog, a place where the popular Boston Globe Magazine columnist Robin Abrahams and her readers share etiquette tips, unravel social conundrums, and gossip about social behavior in pop culture and the news. Have a question of your own? Ask Robin using this form or by emailing her at missconduct@globe.com.
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Who is Miss Conduct?

Robin Abrahamswrites the weekly "Miss Conduct" column for The Boston Globe Magazine and is the author of Miss Conduct's Mind over Manners. Robin has a PhD in psychology from Boston University and also works as a research associate at Harvard Business School. Her column is informed by her experience as a theater publicist, organizational-change communications manager, editor, stand-up comedian, and professor of psychology and English. She lives in Cambridge with her husband Marc Abrahams, the founder of the Ig Nobel Prizes, and their socially challenged but charismatic dog, Milo.

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