I found this post from awhile back. I found it resonates with my previous post, so I wanted to share it.
It’s been awhile. I haven’t gone anywhere, but I have been working hard to finish a few large goals. My writing on here took a backseat for awhile.
2017 was a whirlwind of a year for me. In March, after years of struggling with high-functioning anxiety and panic attacks, I finally decided to take a huge act of self-care and step into therapy.
Time in Therapy
I never considered therapy because I was too ashamed of my anxiety and panic attacks. I thought that if I did everything “just so,” then I’d be happy and anxiety free. Even though I know this is not rational, it was still the illusion I perceived. When something–anything–fell out of balance, I’d lose it. I’d struggle with my sleep, eating habits, and be debilitated with panic attacks. I’d have headaches, back aches, all over body aches. I’d struggle with mental clarity. I’d struggle with “brain fog.” I’d lose my excitement for life.
The biggest lesson I learned during my time in therapy is that my life needs to be sustainable. It’s not about keeping everything in perfect balance; it’s about doing what is right for me.
The hardest lesson I had to learn during therapy was that I try to do too much to make myself feel better. I want to feel better, so I apply everything I can to feel better, and then I experience burnout. Following the burnout, I begin to feel ashamed and the negative thinking cycle continues. I want to keep everyone happy and everything in balance, so I give my all and wake up still feeling ashamed.
My therapist was able to provide many truths just through our weekly writings to one another (thank goodness for online therapy!). Some of it made me cry. Some of it made me feel relieved. All of it opened my eyes and provided me with clarity and space to work out my feelings.
I’m going to make a blanket statement: we take on too much. Either because we love it or feel that we have to. Regardless, we take on too much.
When life becomes “too much,” we experience burnout. But that’s the end of the cycle. There are little bumps along the way, little signs, pointing toward it. But we don’t want to give up. We don’t want to relax.
Since it is January, my social media feeds are filled with resolutions, diet plans, changes and goals for the upcoming year, and all the new exercise regimens to follow.
I’m over it. Honestly, I don’t think any of that is sustainable.
So, sustainability is my goal for the year. I was going to write a list of things that will allow me to have a more sustainable life, but that in and of itself would be a list of resolutions. For me, sustainability is coming back to my true center, which is love.
Instead of a list of resolutions, I make a commitment to myself to upkeep a sustainable life. This could mean many things, which makes a list obsolete. Instead, I will choose to believe that when I do not “feel good,” I have stepped out of love and into fear. When I feel good, I have returned to love.