50. About Stress and Energy Vampires

I don’t think a year of cruising has changed me as a person. But it has definitely made me less stressed. I sleep better, feel better and I’m pretty sure I am in a better condition. Not that I ever felt that there was anything seriously wrong with me but everything used to be a constant worry. Most people seem to blame stress on the amount of work they put in. That was never my case. I am happy to admit that I can be quite a lazy guy that rarely puts in a sixty hour work week. My skill, if I ever had any, was to motivate people around me to do what I needed from them and keep an overall view of a strategy that I think would lead to a successful outcome. And then to package it, deliver it and hopefully win and go home with the trophy. Sounds great, but it also means that you are never really in control of your own destiny. You always have to keep people that you need motivated and focused on your project rather than other duties that they have. That often meant that you come to work full of energy and enthusiasm but got home drained. Only to be miserable at the dinner table, sleep badly and do the whole thing over again the next day. To let, what I used to call the energy vampires, suck you dry again.

Don’t misunderstand me, I really loved my job. I worked for a great company and had many colleagues and clients that remain very dear to me. Most of them were not energy vampires. I wouldn’t have stayed there for over thirty years otherwise. The difference now though is that I surround myself with people that are full of energy and enthusiasm and that have the same type of project that I have. To sail around the world, explore, interact and develop new skills. And the strategy is pretty simple. Take your time, stay healthy, go west and eventually you will have circumnavigated. And it is my strategy. I don’t have to sell it to anyone and I am the only one that can screw things up along the way.

I used to suffer from Rosacea. A skin disorder that is triggered by things like red wine, spicy food, sunshine and stress. As a guy that thought he was close to immortal, I always felt that it was ridiculous when my dermatologist told me that it was stress related. I thought I could take the stress, as long as I get my fair share of red wine, spicy food and sunshine! Nowadays my Rosacea is pretty much all gone even though I don’t drink less red wine and eat plenty of spicy food. And I certainly get a lot more exposure to sunshine here in the tropics. I can only assume that it has to do with less stress.

For anyone that may feel concern over that I may not keep busy enough, I just thought that I should finish with describing my weekend here on anchor in Antigua. Yesterday I rented a car and drove around the island with some friends and snorkelled on a reef with a marine biologist. Today I am posting this piece before hiking up to Shirley Heights to watch the sun set and listen to a reggae band. Tomorrow I will watch the start of Antigua 600. A sail race with the most impressive line-up that I have ever seen. All while looking for someone that can give me diving lessons and teach me how to kite surf. I think Tomas 2.0 is doing pretty well. I like him a lot better than the previous version. He goes to bed full of enthusiasm. And he sleeps a lot better. Safe from energy vampires.

Antigua by car
On our way to snorkel on a reef. Olof from Happy Pancake and Tomacci from Nari Nari
Rikki. Marine biologist. Sorting laundry on the pier
Annie from Happy Pancake. With a shy birthday boy
Rikki and Tomacci on Nari Nari
Jan, Karen and Pit on Margaritaville
Atlantic rower arriving in English Harbour
English Harbour from Shirley Heights
Same again. A few hours later
Party at Shirley Heights
Last meeting

17 thoughts on “50. About Stress and Energy Vampires

  1. Hi, Tomas ~ Indeed, stress is powerful and has its ways of infiltrating our lives, taking a toll on us physically, psychologically, even spiritually. I am glad that your liveaboard status and cruising lifestyle with Saoirse has helped combat stress in your life — bravo! It’s good for the soul, what you’re doing with Saoirse — letting the sights, sounds, and feel of wind, water, and sunshine cleanse all. Rejuvenating, life-enforcing! On another note: regarding the ‘party pic’ — looks like no Covid restrictions? Surmising the infection rate is low/minimal to none there? Fair winds, ~ Chelle

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    1. Thanks Chelle. Regarding the covid restrictions you have to have a mask on when you enter a shop or restaurant and you need to be vaccinated to go here. You also have to wash your hands and check your temperature whenever you enter. Technically you are supposed to wear a mask on the street too but not all do. We also had to leave contact numbers at the party for tracing. They still take it seriously here. Best. Tomas

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  2. P.S. I like your term ‘energy vampire’ — I’ve always used ‘energy sucker’ (vs every giver), but your ‘energy vampire’ is a much better way to put it! 😀

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      1. Yes, I totally concur, Tomas — and I had meant to write ‘energy giver’ as opposed to ‘every giver’, btw. ☺️ Hope you and Hector are having a wonderful day — sunny and 63°F yesterday, and now 18°F and snowing today. 😳

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      2. Hi Chelle. I understood what you meant. It’s getting a lot warmer here. Hector left the boat a couple of days ago butI am far from alone as I have buddy boats next to me most of the time. Best. Tomas

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      3. Hi, Tomas! So glad to hear you’ve got lots of friends close by! Questions coming soon! 🙂 Fair winds, ~ Chelle

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      4. Hi, Tomas! Just sent the questions over to your email — thank you so much!!! Fair winds, ~ Chelle

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  3. Hej Tom, great to follow you on your amazing adventure. All the best mate & look forward to catching up over a beer in Sodermalm sometime soon.

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    1. Hi there James. Great to here from you. How is my old job? I really hope you enjoy it. I will of course let you know when I am back and would love a couple of pints on Söder. All the best. Tomas

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  4. Tom, it is fantastic to read and see how well you are doing. I love the way you put things in writing! Today I talked with my guys about energy vampires, we talked about you, the fun and also the “bullshit” we talked about . Tom we miss you buddy! Last question, what is the name of the series with the energy vampires? Again, I strongly hope to catch up soon in person. Best Olli

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    1. Hi Olli. I really miss you and the guys too. I’ll look forward to meet up again soon. So happy that you enjoy the blog. I guess it is my way to stay connected. The TV show is called ‘What we do in the shadows’ and it is hilarious. All the best from Barbuda. Tom

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  5. Hey Tom. Despite same age – you made it “a little” earlier than me to the safe haven. Fantastic!
    I am so happy for you and admire that you live the dream. Love to read how well you are doing.

    Hope to see you in one or two years from now when I will be circuling the world (by motorbike) and our paths might cross again.

    Stay well my dear friend and enjoy life to the max! Günter

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    1. Hi Gunter my friend. It would be fantastic to meet up along the way. Promise me you won’t wait too long before you start that trip. It is all too easy to put things off until it gets too late. Miss you my friend. Best Tomas

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