Yesterday, I was feeling pretty down on myself. I didn’t write 5000 words like I planned (2K of which was leftover from the day before), I didn’t exercise, cook dinner, or get any house work done.
I started to think about this becoming the story of my life. Never quite finishing my to-do list. I need to work harder, I always tell myself. I’m not pushing hard enough. I can do more. That’s just the kind of person I am. I always think I can do more. I’m not trying to brag. It’s just the way I am. To be honest, sometimes it really sucks. I never feel accomplished enough. I’m always stuck in this perpetual state of needing more.
I paused in my day, late in the evening, right before I was ready to collapse on my bed for the night and while the baby was still cruising around the house looking for toys to amuse himself before he too was ready to collapse. I did a lot of shit, I thought. I juggled a ton of things, and while I let a few balls drop to the ground, there were 10 skillfully thrown in the air and that deserved some kind of credit, right?
I started this thing where I write down 3 things I do well each day. This was mine from yesterday:
- took the baby to the doctor. While it took an hour of sitting in the waiting room, at least we have it resolved, especially for his comfort. That earned some Mom points.
- made it to my meeting after school and coordinated important pieces for a big event I’m in charge of. Something to check of the neverending to-do list.
- I wrote 3000 words. It wasn’t 5000, but 3000 is a pretty big fucking deal. Once upon a time I couldn’t even write 100 words a day. I’m moving forward, getting better, advancing–that’s all that matters.
Today’s list so far looks like this:
- woke up early and did my kickboxing.
I don’t think writing these three little things are necessarily going to alleviate my anxiety about not doing enough, but I saw a quote recently that helped with my perspective:
“Anxiety happens when you think you have to figure out everything all at once.” -Karen Salmansohn
I agree. That’s when I usually feel anxiety–thinking I need everything down NOW and always feeling like I can never do it. It’s not about me and my ability to work hard. It’s really about my unrealistic expectations about what can be accomplished in a single day. We can’t defy gravity. We also can’t defy time.
I’m a work in progress. I’m continuously learning.