Choosing Me

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It’s my turn.
Incredible photo by Michelle MacLeod Photography

So I’m pretty good at making and getting goals. At least, that’s what I tell myself, and what other people tell me they see; one time I was playing one of those ask-your-spouse-these-questions games on Facebook and the question was “what makes you proud of me?” And hubs said that I make goals and then I crush them.

Awwww…. thanks, babe.

And I’ve had a few messages now and then of kind people expressing congratulations on different things I’ve been up to – it’s so humbling to know people are watching, and rooting for me! hahaha So THANK YOU.

It’s not always true, though, that I crush my goals. I mean, I do like to do things: I like to be constantly on the move, constantly challenging myself, learning new things. I LOVE earning stupid pieces of paper that say I’ve done a thing – my university degree, my college diploma, my professional license, my additional certifications… If the thing comes with a certificate I am all the more sorely tempted to dive in and git-r-done.

I’m VERY extrinsically motivated.

And I talk. A lot. I’m horribly introverted and definitely anxious, which makes for a weird combo: once you get me to start talking my nerves kick in and I just goooooooo and I can talk your ear off for daaaaayyyys.

And my brain has been erroneously hardwired to constantly be competing. Constantly be proving that I am, in fact, good enough. Constantly trying to be important, to be seen. So I feel compelled to talk about what I’m working on, what my goals are. Hey, I’m not worthless, I’m doing a thing!

It’s a weird little phenomenon because I HATE attention. I have some weird need for you to know that I don’t suck as a human being, but I don’t for one second want your attention because of it. Like, STOP LOOKING AT ME. It’s not a big deal, you just needed to know for some reason. Talking about it out loud helps me process.

Maybe that comes from the lonely feeling. Maybe I do that in an attempt to make connections. I don’t know.

When I started this blog last year, even, its point wasn’t to brag about myself, but to chronicle some things I’m up to and show people that even with a sub-optimally-functioning brain one can do a lot of really cool stuff! And I was going to tell you all about my adventures and how I stay focused through the fog and get stuff done. And I was going to be part of something HUGE and it was going to be my topic here for the better part of the year.

But I’ve told you before, I didn’t get the opportunity to participate last year. And not getting it undid me. Chucked me back down the hole of The Pit. Where I hid, and I hated, and I sabotaged. For months.

NOW I’m back, and I’m doing okay. I’m not great everyday – I’m getting overwhelmed, and that’s got me fighting the fog a bit more than I would like to have to. I’ve got a fierce case of writer’s block that’s been plaguing me for a couple of weeks that’s making it nearly impossible to get anything done. I’m tired, which often leaves me cranky, which makes me feel worse because I’m usually pretty good at regulating my outside emotions, so when they snap out and lash at people I’m appalled and embarrassed, and the demons’ chastisement starts again.

“I’m sorry, guys. Mommy’s just really tired. I didn’t mean to snap at you. AGAIN.”

Insert mom-guilt here.

I’m just juggling a few too many things at the moment, I think. But I can’t identify which to let go of.

And, newly, I WON’T write about it all. Some people know what I’m working on, but most people don’t. And that’s new. And it’s GOOD. Because it’s important, and I’m learning. I’m growing.

I’m doing something JUST for me. Just because I want to. Purely because I have never done it before and I have always wanted to and I have always hated myself that I “can’t” do it. And so I am doing it. I have a date, I have a reward, now I just have to see it through.

The PROBLEM I’m running into, I think, is that I am paranoid about failing myself. AGAIN.

And so I am probably OVER fixated on this thing. Working on it TOO hard. It’s pulling at me, constantly, and I am rocking it! And I am making progress!!

But everything else in life suffers. Making time for one thing takes time away from something else.

Which is not always a bad thing, honestly. Sometimes whatever the goal is really IS more important than cleaning the dishes before bed! It’s 100% about prioritizing! And I have virtually stopped watching Netflix – I just don’t have time for it anymore.

But I think now I’m just freaked out I’m not going to be able to do this – I’ve failed every single other time I’ve “tried” EVER – and fear of failure has me overly fixated on it. It’s ridiculous, because I AM doing it – the progress I’ve made towards this goal is crazy! I legitimately didn’t think I would ever get as far as I’ve gotten and I’m astounded that some part of me, no matter how small, could think I can see this through. It’s so NEW for me to do something for no reason except me. I have never been important enough before to be allowed to succeed. And I’m succeeding.

But it’s throwing off my groove.

So now I sit and wonder if I need to change the goals, or if I’m looking for an excuse to cop out on myself, yet again. Thing is, now I know I’m worth doing this for, and I want to see it through. I just haven’t mastered balancing the fight in my head and doing what I need to with the 24 hours I have in a day.

I’m overwhelmed. And I’m shutting down a little.

I’m fixating on getting this goal and letting too many other things slide. I have 1 priority at the moment, instead of what I usually do with juggling and scheduling and progressing different areas at once.

But feeling overwhelmed shuts me down: I end up frozen in place; I can’t move; my breath catches in my chest and my head starts spinning. I usually find this is easiest to recognize when I’m trying to de-clutter something – I pick up the thing I don’t need in the house, look at it, can’t decide, and put it down in a pile to deal with later. And then repeat that process with everything else in the room until I’ve made a large pile of all the things and not actually gotten anywhere, so I start trying to edit the pile, and make another new pile of all the same items…. and round and round and back and forth it goes until I give up and go lay down.

Right now my pile is just a list of things that need my time that never gets shorter:

The blog; Instagram; affiliates; my REAL job that currently pays for things like, you know, feeding my children; the yard, OHMIGOSH the yard; the house; fitness; the church responsibilities; MY CHILDREN – they do occasionally need more than just food thrown at them!

I have so many ideas, and so many plans. And so much that I want to do.

And so I sit here, stagnant. Not doing any of it. Letting things slide. Letting them slip away from me. Letting myself down.

But I guess, by definition you can’t prioritize multiples things at one time. In any given moment you can have one priority – what you are doing in that moment. You know what I mean? Right in this moment writing this is my priority. It’s more important than sleep because I’m up, doing it, and not sleeping. It’s more important than frantically practicing the organ for church in a few hours even though I know I can’t actually play those songs, because I’m sitting here, writing, and not over there, practicing. It’s more important in this moment than tidying up the mess in front of me because, I’m not tidying up.

So maybe my methods are a little extreme at the moment in the goal I’m most focused on right now. Maybe I’m spending too many individual moments with it as the main priority, and that’s what’s got me feeling overwhelmed.

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But at the same time, this is a thing 100% for me, something I have failed at time and time again. So maybe now is the time I’m SUPPOSED to put it first and get it done. It won’t be much longer, only about a month and a half to go. Then I will be able to let it go and shift the priorities once again, and move onto the next goal. And maybe come June’s mid-year reflection in my passion planner this goal WON’T STILL BE in the 3-month goals section like it has been, every year, for the last 3 years. Because I just keep not doing it. Maybe this time I will FINALLY cross it off, because this time, I’m ready. I can do this.

Maybe the answer right now is to relax and let myself do this thing. I’m worth the effort. It’s important to me, and that should make it important enough. Because I am enough. I am important. I am allowed to want and do good things for me. I shouldn’t feel bad for making myself happy.

Maybe right now it’s me, and my little family. That’s what the focus is for the next 6 weeks. Maybe I juggle those two as priorities and I get to the rest of the list as I can, without the guilt, without the stress, without the anxiety.

Yeah. That sounds good. So I think I’m going to keep on going.

Right after I practice the organ… 😉

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