There was a time when I had nervous butterflies at the thought of juggling work, social life, and family life.
And those nervous butterflies translated into adrenaline.
And that adrenaline turned into super-productivity resulting in euphoric multi-tasking bliss.
So what changed?
My internal monologue broke. That’s what.
Instead of feeling high like I used to, I often feel heavy.
I used to be pretty damn good at positive self-talk. This came from years of practice, raised as a single child, playing alone in my room… lonely. There was no one to judge me. No one to shoot me down. So I got pretty good at raising myself up. Giving myself props. Boosting my confidence.
Nobody can make you feel anything. You make you feel things. That’s what my mom used to (still does) say… roughly paraphrased. And there was a time where all it took was to remind myself of that… that I was in control of my emotions… and I could set myself right. Talk myself through (what I realise now was) a panic attack. Push the negative bullying thoughts aside. Focus on the positive.
But that seems harder to do now. And I’m not 100% sure why. I never used to doubt myself as much as I do now. Maybe now that I’m a parent, that I have a higher level of overall life responsibilities, I feel a bit more fragile. A bit more vulnerable. A bit more scared that I can’t keep it up.
But keep it up to whose expectations exactly? My own! My own stupidly high expectations. It’s true. I make ME feel things. So why am I making myself feel fragile… vulnerable… scared? These emotions should be on the same level as guilt and anger… utterly useless to hold on to. Exhausting. Draining.
So, yeah, internal monologue… I need to find her again. Starting with this:
” I did enough work today. It was productive and satisfying. I cuddled my daughters. I connected with friends. I took time for myself. Today was a pretty damn good day.”
And, yeah, I may not fully believe it now. But that’s because she’s quiet. I suspect she’ll get louder, one day soon, if I keep giving her a chance to speak up.