My Emotion Curve – By @MrBenGolding
By Ben Golding
My Emotion Curve
SO this week Marc was very generous and shared some personal stories with us about the ups and downs of his life. He showed us a graph that plotted an upward curve that lead to a deep well and then finally it soared back out, even higher than the first rise. This he explained, is a graph of a positive change curve: you feel excited by doing something great or having something great happen to you. After this you have a honeymoon period until finally you slip down into confusion and depression, possibly even crisis. From this, a positive change curve shows you heading upwards with acceptance, exploration, and finally transformation. He told us we were all on this curve right now, to not worry that we were somewhere between uncertainty and confusion right now and that we should feel safe in the knowledge we will emerge transformed like an advertising phoenix.
Thats great. Thats all great, I understand how you go down and come back up, better and richer for the experience. But I’m not on the downward slope, I’m on the up. I’m sure you could argue about false epiphanies and whatnot but I’m fairly sure I’m on an upward slope.
So in the spirit of oversharing via SCABs and feeling like I should share a part of myself in return for Marc opening up, heres some of my story.
About two years ago I left a job I really enjoyed doing with a cracking team and great projects to take an even better job somewhere else. I had to burn a few bridges in order to leave, but it was worth it. This job was going to put me on the map; a small production studio with massive brands. I would be hands-on with clients and on every shoot; I was assured that within the year I would be directing live action and blossoming into the man I always knew I would be. I would be flying out to New York, Barcelona, California, Tokyo, the true hubs of world culture, moreover I was there to embrace growth and change.
Two weeks in, the honeymoon period started to wear off, I was consistently overworked and then underworked. Stress was piled on me as my new boss showed that he was struggling to keep the company from getting on top of him. As things progressed, I could see that my new boss was really good at talking about ideas and ‘what if’s, but when it came to action my thoughts would get shot down straight away. Also, his wife hated me. I don’t know why, but she hated me. With barely enough pleasantries to cover her aversion on the days she came in, my life got exceedingly difficult.
Cut to eighteen months later. My globe-hopping had been relegated to being put up at the cheapest hotel in the smallest town a good way outside of Denver, or Lille. My boss went to the fun ones himself. In client meetings I had become the butt of jokes. The company had grown by nothing and this was somehow my fault. I felt like I was in a tailspin. I stopped sleeping. So I started drinking to sleep instead. I found myself making fights where there didn’t need to be one with family and friends. I stopped caring, and sometimes getting out of bed. I was a shithead, I knew I was a shithead. Worst of all, I stopped making things, I lost the spark.
My girlfriend was pissed at me for something I had done one night, she had been so supportive but enough had been enough. ‘Sort yourself out or I’m leaving.’ was the headline of the argument that night. I didn’t think I could function without her. This was crisis point.
It took what felt like a herculean effort, but I got to the doctor and got some depression medication. That was the first step. I started looking around for new jobs or some way of changing up my situation. I stumbled on the SCA website. I applied. I got a scholarship. I got to hand in my notice. I started school. I finally found somewhere I could think the way I wanted to. I love it. I tell everyone how much I love it and how excited I am to go in every day.
I’m not heading through ‘Loss of confidence’ right now, I’m on the upslope. I’m a fucking phoenix.