Risk & Business Magazine Cooke Insurance Risk & Business Magazine Fall 2017 - Page 10

A WORKAHOLIC’S LESSON I guess you could say from the outside looking in, I had it all. The career, the house, a loving husband, beautiful and healthy kids, the M Sport BMW, the spa membership, and the audience (including you) that gave me affirmation of my “perfect” and envious lifestyle on a daily basis. The problem was that it was all a facade. I was actually in a deep, dark depression that was progressively getting worse, and I didn’t know it until I was committed to a mental hospital on December 14, 2016. The start of 2016 looked incredibly promising: I became obsessed with going on LinkedIn, seeing that I was in the “Top 1 percent viewed profiles” (what does that even mean?) and my posts were receiving hundreds of thousands of views. The fame of being recognized as having the “Highest SSI Score” at LinkedIn’s annual conference and shooting those infamous free throws with Shaquille O’Neal took me far—further than I ever expected. I capitalized on that fame on a daily basis to grow my newfound business, Lindsey Boggs Consulting. The work poured in. I was on a plane every week, traveling across the world to speak on social selling, lead generation, and how to grow a pipeline. Occasionally, I was hired for giving motivational speeches concerning career growth and how I went from opera to sales. It was a high. I loved being on stage and I was in my element. My Snapchats and Instagram posts were consistently showing me with mimosas in first class, Ritz-Carlton suites, and expensive wine at glamorous restaurants. What they didn’t show was me missing my daughter’s birthday, layovers of doom, an addiction to sleeping pills (due to time-zone issues), growing friction with my husband, and missing every single extracurricular activity with my daughter and son. My life was presented to the outside world like this: bliss. 10 But it came with a price. That summer brought an incredible opportunity to be a keynote speaker with leading marketing expert Gary Vaynerchuk at the Cisco/Avnet conference in San Francisco. That same week, my husband and I were to celebrate nine years of marriage. So I brought him to the conference and we were put up at the Ritz-Carlton for the three-day conference and then left for Carmel, CA. Since I felt I had to capitalize on the recent Gary Vaynerchuk encounter (real-time, folks), I ended up working on my entire anniversary trip. Friction escalated greatly and to this day, I cannot look at the fake smiling photos we took in Carmel. Then, on Tuesday, September 27, 2016, my life changed forever. I was in Dallas at a trade show and I got a call saying my sister Melissa had been taken to the hospital for a suspected brain aneurysm. I took a 5 a.m. flight the next day to Washington, DC, and was told upon arrival that there was a 90 percent chance she would die. Ninety percent chance. How could this be? I just talked to her earlier that day. It took me three attempts to even enter her hospital room. All of the machines, wires, tubes—things I want to erase from my memory—scared me to my core. Once I was able to walk in the room, I sat with my parents and Melissa for the next three days and played her favorite music—Pink Floyd—while we waited for her to be matched up to people for organ donation. She was a nurse and it was her dying wish to help others, so we helped her fulfill her wish. On October 1 at noon, my sister Melissa saved eight people’s lives by donating her organs. From there, I traveled even more frequently, and from mid-August to late September, I was gone every single week. I hardly knew what my children were working on in school, my husband and I grew further and further apart, and I was only home long enough to do my laundry on the weekends and then head back to the airport early Monday morning. I didn’t even make an effort to be present when I was home because it became too exhausting to try. My photos that I put out there were sure fun to look at, though—always had a smile and a witty statement on my Snapchats. What I realized (and it was probably the most important lesson I learned that year) during those days of sitting with my brain-dead sister that surgeons and doctors go home every day and think about the patients that they lost—people that died in their care. In my world, I was obsessing over losing a software contract or a speaking gig. It put everything into perspective for me. Life spiraled downhill quickly from that point. Planning a funeral for my one and only sibling was something I never expected I would have to do at this point in my life—she was only 38. On top of all of that, I had just started a new and exciting software sales job at Medallia, and me, the Type A overachiever, expected to achieve top-notch performance and to win right out of the gate. I wasn’t functioning at full capacity, not even close. I was still traveling a ton, and I missed even more special events at home and became a stranger to my children. My son would cry when I tried to read to him or put >