Character Select: Anxiety Dance

Written by on August 5, 2013 in [, , ]

I will be the first to admit that I’m not the best at dealing with change. Actually I should amend that sweeping statement slightly. I’m not the best at dealing with change when I have enough time to think about it. In situations where change happens suddenly and it becomes a matter of immediate adaptation or crisis management I’m awesome. I handle those types of situations incredibly well when I’m in the moment and then usually lose my cool completely once everything passes and I have enough time to process the information.

The type of change that gives me the most trouble is the slow, creeping kind. A very good example of this is the new job my husband is starting in a few weeks. I’m thrilled for him because this is probably his perfect job. I’m thrilled for us because it’s more money which is always helpful when there are children to support (and video games to buy). That said, this job will likely mean longer hours and a shift in the family schedule that we’ve grown so good at keeping. This job could mean international travel and will likely come with more stress for Don which always seems to strain our relationship a bit. This is the kind of change that ratchets up my anxiety and makes me pace around the house mumbling to myself into the late hours of the night.

The worst part is I’ve got two more weeks to consider this stuff before he changes jobs and we can start working out some of these issues. I know once we’re about two weeks into this new position we’ll have most of the answers and will readjust our lives but for now I’m a terrible little ball of anxiety and stress. It does not help that I injured my shoulder trying to keep a certain little boy from giving himself a concussion during mother unapproved couch gymnastics. If I can’t workout I get extra cranky. Cue the ominous soundtrack music! (Side Note: Mother Unapproved Couch Gymnastics is the name of my Presidents of the United States of America cover band).

All of this anxiety often leads to long waking hours at night and during those tired, hazy hours I think about things. One of the things I was recently pondering was just how stressful new console launches must be to their creators. If I am this anxious about my husband starting a new job I wonder how these folks who have spent years creating new hardware and software in secret are feeling just a few short months from the launch of the Xbox One and PlayStation 4. I would probably be constantly vibrating between extreme excitement and an overwhelming desire to throw up everything I just ate.

It feels like so much pressure is riding along with the launch of both of these systems. Sony hasn’t seen a truly mind blowing hardware launch in a while. The PS3 performed a bit mediocre out of the gate and the Vita hasn’t exactly been selling gangbusters since its debut. They need the PS4 to do well, especially in November when year end sales numbers are becoming an important reality to consider.

On the other side of the coin Microsoft has a lot to prove here as well. The Xbox 360 has been incredibly successful for them so shareholders and consumers are expecting great things from the Xbox One. Microsoft hasn’t had the greatest publicity for that device since its announcement in May and they’ve had enough flip flops on policies and device details that it feels more like they are running for Senate than launching a piece of hardware.

I personally love new console launches. They are the type of change I can get behind because I can always keep my old devices as a security blanket while I adapt to new toys. In a lot of ways that same thing is true for both Microsoft and Sony because the PS3 and Xbox 360 will continue to chug along as they weight the realities of dropping their new consoles on the market. At the same time though if their new hardware doesn’t do well they don’t have the same option as a consumer. They can’t just sit back and wait to see what happens, they have to figure it out what is going to happen.

I’m guessing that in these next two weeks I’m not the only one sitting up, watching awful late night TV, trying to mitigate my anxiety and talking to myself. I’ll bet at least a few folks at Sony and Microsoft (and maybe even Nintendo) are doing the same anxiety dance. I would put money on the fact that for every anxiety fueled night I have between now and Christmas there will be at least a few other people wearing holes in their carpet as well. I hope all of our anxiety and stress evaporates by Christmas so we can start the new year with a fresh plate of different reasons to freak out.


  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Myspace
  • Google Buzz
  • Reddit
  • Stumnleupon
  • Delicious
  • Digg
  • Technorati
Author: Elaine View all posts by
Electrical Engineer, podcaster, writer, gamer, tech lover, mother of two children (who are often trying to kill me) and lover of rum, vodka and wine from a box.

One Comment on "Character Select: Anxiety Dance"

  1. Nicole August 6, 2013 at 1:52 am - Reply

    I feel your pain. My husband is on notice to start shift work…whenever they deem it’s time to start, and the not knowing when, not knowing how we’ll cope and how our schedule will pan out is driving me insane! He did it a few years ago and we were fine, but now our boy is at school and it works out that there will be some weeks where they won’t see each other for a week at a time! Blegh.

    At first I thought perhaps the pressure would be on Nintendo most of all, but then I figured that pretty much everyone has written off the Wii U by now so they’re free to just do what needs to be done without all these overhyped expectations. I’m definitely interested to see how PS4 and Xbone go once they launch. I imagine that the flip flops and price difference may hurt Microsoft, but then again, they have such a massive following as it is.

    …Yep, I am definitely glad I’m not working on a console release right now!

Leave A Response