“It” being everything

I’m going to break form and include an image this issue, which I almost never do. I wanted to share this photo, and my gratitude, for the folks who showed up to participate in the “fun run” I led at Confab 2022 this year. Lookit these hot doggers!

11 people in exercise clothes posing before a run.
A pre-run photo of 18 smiling Confabbers in exercise gear posing in front of the trailhead, as it were, of the Loring Greenway in Minneapolis, MN.

As I told some folks in the group, I really wasn’t feeling it. “It” being…well, everything, basically. I absolutely would not have gone on a run during Confab, or done any exercise leading up to it, without the social pressure of having volunteered to lead the run and then having people show up and expect me to do the thing I said I was going to do — the audacity! So I’m grateful.

My battery’s been damn low of late, the kind of low where “do your best” feels like a joke, because your best is barely doing it at all. But I pushed, I tried, I stuck it out. I did the run, effortfully, and led my workshop, effortfully and more sloppily than I’d have liked, and tried to interact warmly and authentically with all of the lovely people at the event. I’m afraid I can’t say that I left feeling wildly refreshed, or that my battery got recharged, but that would be a pretty high bar. I went, I talked, I listened, ate some snacks, saw my people. Say thank ya.

This essay originally appeared in Issue 086 of the UX Writing Events newsletter on May 23, 2022.

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