: This is a subscription-based newsletter that continues to exist because of reader support like yours. So, if you like what I write, subscribe, share and comment. But mostly subscribe.
: Like what you're reading? Please share Right Down Euclid with your friends!
️: If you want to join in on the discussion about this story, give me a follow on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram!
: Have any questions for the weekly mailbag? Or in general? Shoot Right Down Euclid an email – we'll try to answer the best way we can!
From the title you may have already guessed it, but, Right Down Euclid is closing up shop for the next seven days for vacation. That means no offseason updates on the Cleveland Cavaliers for the next week. Or Cleveland Guardians takeaways. Or a reader mailbag. Or anything you normally enjoy and partake in if you're a regular subscriber. (A huge thank you to all who have joined me on this journey and if you haven't, please consider it!)
Your regularly scheduled content will resume the following week and, hopefully, it's what you've come to enjoy. At least I hope you're still enjoying what's coming out of here. For those who may not remember, it's been nearly a year since I officially announced the launch of this semi-regular newsletter and it's been nothing short of a whirlwind from then until now.
In that span, I covered the Cavaliers up close and personal after being away due to the global pandemic. Not only that, but I also got to explore everything and anything around NBA All-Star as Cleveland became the home of the NBA world in February. I got access to the Guardians for the first time in my career and I'm falling more and more in love with the game of baseball because of it. Hopefully, coverage of the Browns will come later this fall but joining Bulletin and creating Right Down Euclid has been tremendous for me and none of it would be possible without everyone who supports me.
Things won't stop growing and chugging along and I'm forever thankful for that. In fact, later this fall there are some exclusives with some certain Cavaliers players you know and love that I'm excited to share. But, as things continue to grow I've been suffering more and more from imposter syndrome and my brain is constantly racked by these questions in some way, shape or form:
People seem to respond well to my content but am I doing enough?
Do I warrant any of the praise people give me for what I do?
How do I calm the feeling of surface tension, which is like an overfilled glass of water that hasn’t yet spilled over, holding the water inside the glass even when it's filled above where the glass promises to hold it?
Am I happy?
… Or is it the void that always feels like it's present, waiting to swallow me whole?
Due to this ceaseless state of perpetual anxiety, I've been constantly trying to do more to satiate the constant negative intrusive thoughts. From the moment I wake up until when I inevitably run out of steam, I'm constantly working, trying to make the content I produce here and elsewhere the best it can be. Right Down Euclid is a one-man operation and I've had to put my personal life on hold more often than not in order to produce the best content I can, let alone keep up with others in this industry.
Due to this vicious spin cycle, it feels like I've built a house of cards on what's a fairly solid foundation. Whenever I receive unconstructive criticism or have a thinly veiled potshot tweeted at me these days, I spiral out of control and let the water spill over the edge of the glass simile mentioned above. It isn't healthy. It isn't normal. But, needless to say, my mental health is in tatters and that's why I'm closing up shop for a week.
Mind you, by no means, do I hate my job – it's actually quite the contrary. I get to cover my favorite city in the world, along with everything and anything I can, all while maintaining my own voice and presence. Having so much overwhelming support from everyone continues to push me further and further. But, because of the voice in the back of my head screaming at an 11 and trying to constantly quiet it, I've worn myself down over the better part of the last year.
Granted, most of it is my own fault. Going from covering one of Cleveland's professional sports teams to all of them, on your own, is quite the endeavor, despite thinking I could handle it with no problem at all. I've tried to do better by finding a work-life balance and picked up hobbies like golf of all things all while rekindling friendships and relationships that fell to the wayside due to my professional life consuming me. I found what it's like to be a bit more of myself and the water doesn't feel like it's going to spill over the edge.
But, unfortunately, I tried to keep doing that all while mainlining a steady feed of producing content on top of it. So, for now, I'll tell my therapist it's a work in progress but I am getting better and that in itself is nearly a win! But, selfishly, in order to get into the endzone (get it, because sports?) I think I need a few days to unplug and recharge.
So, for the first time in over a decade, I'm taking a proper vacation with my loved ones and truly unplugging. There are also a few books I want to finally read and some quiet time to reflect sounds nice as well. It won't be for long but it'll be long enough that I don't end up slacking and letting all of you down when it comes to the work I produce.
I'm not sure what was the point of all this other than to let you know Right Down Euclid is shutting down, along with my appearance on Locked On Cavs for about a week. But, learn to be kind to yourself like I'm learning. Tell the voice in your head you appreciate the input and not bottle it up until things explode. That you're doing your best every day. It's a process and it may be difficult but, in the end, it'll be worth it no matter the progress you make.
With that said, when I do return, I'll have to celebrate with something special next Monday so I hope you like what I have planned. Maybe I'll fill you in on the trip a bit and the nasty sunburn I get a few days into it. Regardless of that, I will say that next's week op-ed will be Cavaliers-centric and focused on a certain player. That alone will probably give it away.
But, until then, I'll see you in about a week's time. Make sure you subscribe and tell your friends to subscribe too.
Featured image credit: Atlantide Phototravel
Evan Dammarell is a sports journalist covering all things Cleveland right off the shores of Lake Erie. Follow him on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org. Did you enjoy this edition of Right Down Euclid? You can get it in your inbox two to three times a week by subscribing here. All it takes is either your Facebook account or email address!