It was an ordinary morning. I woke up and started my day as I usually do: by opening the Pinterest app. That’s when I saw it. (more…)
Today, I’m not going to say, “And that’s okay” and smile and be a Glinda the Good Witch incarnate.
Because it’s not. It is not okay. (more…)
Have you ever had that feeling when the Devil’s Snare is holding you tightly and you’re just… stuck? Except you’re not really physically stuck. More like mentally and emotionally stuck. In life.
I mean. We’ve all been 11-year-old Ron at some point, amirite? (Source)
Feeling stuck in life sucks. I end up panicking. Always. And as much as a level-headed Hermione in my mind tells me to just relax, Kate, just relax, my first instinct is to be Ron: become sarcastic while panicking.
I mean, just off the top of my head, this ‘I’m stuck’ feeling:
- Makes you feel like you’re not doing anything
- And because you’re not doing anything, you feel useless
- And this makes you feel worthless
- Which lowers your self-esteem
- And you end up becoming a mashed/couch potato binge-watching awful reality shows on cable.
I’ve been a mashed/couch potato binge-watcher plenty of times and I honestly don’t want anyone to end up in the same position as I have, so I’m sharing to you what I do when I feel stuck in life. Hope this helps! 🙂
Purge / De-clutter
Has the physical chaos around you added to all that tangled mess already inside your head and it’s messing you up?
Friend, you’re not alone.
I’m not a very organized person. I have piles of scratch papers and empty watercolor tubes and dried up pens all over my room that I don’t throw out until it’s been like months. So when my mind becomes a hot mess and gets too overwhelming, the mess all around me is like a fuel to the already burning fire.
This is usually the time when I grab a broom and a rag and have an impromptu cleaning spree.
I’m telling you: there is something absolutely therapeutic about de-cluttering your space and purging the mess.
And I don’t call it a purge for show. If there’s an article of clothing I haven’t worn for like a year, I throw it out or donate it. If my desk or shelves are filled with papers from months ago, I throw them out. My sister had this paper bag filled with newspapers that she supposedly was going to add to her portfolio (she’s a journalist) but it’s been gathering dusts since last year. So when my brother needed paper for their classroom’s recycled Christmas decor, I gave the paper bag to him.
Look through every nook and cranny of your work space and your bedroom. If you’re a semi-organized fellow like moi, you’re bound to find a mess or four. So here are some quick de-cluttering you can start doing now:
- Dust off those spider webs in the corner.
- Organize your closet. (I mean, do you really really need that knitted hat with pompoms you’ve had since third grade? Come on, Janice.)
- Unsubscribe to newsletters that you don’t read anymore.
- Change your bed sheets and pillow cases. (I mean. That feeling of flopping onto a clean bed? 11/10 would do it every-freakin-day)
- Organize your bookshelves. In rainbow colors or by authors, whatever suits your fancy.
- Throw away those old earphones that don’t work anymore.
- Deal with The Chair™. (You know? That chair in your room where a pile of your dirty laundry sits? Tell me I’m not the only one with that chair.)
Be ruthless in your purging. When I purge I only follow one rule: if it doesn’t do any good to you anymore, it doesn’t need to occupy much space in your life. Throw them out. Let them go. Give them to other people who will make use of them. The act of cleaning and de-cluttering is a big help. And when you’re done, you’ve got so much more room to do more things. #Win.
Move / Take Action
There are so many things I didn’t get to do because I thought I wasn’t ready. And, listen, this is a very unhealthy thought to have, okay? Don’t be like me, kids.
Sometimes we get stuck because we have this mindset that we’re not good enough for anything. That we aren’t ready. That our skills isn’t enough to do what we want to do. It’s like you’re stuck in a quicksand made of all the negative self-talk you’ve created.
But you know what? No one’s ever ready for anything.
At this point, I’ve probably watched enough TED Talk videos and listened to enough motivational podcasts to know people rarely are completely ready when they start doing what they’ve wanted to do.
And you know what? There’s absolutely nothing wrong with that 🙂
In fact, if you’re not ready but you jumped in and started anyway, GO YOU! That’s brave and that in itself is something to be proud of—because you faced your fear and said, “I’m doing this anyway.”
Boy oh boy. This is probably a common problem among people in the Internet. Because, you know, social media.
We can all agree social media feeds on the little green monster living inside us, right? Seeing the fabulous achievements and gorgeous lifestyle your Facebook friends have, the glamorous travel-filled life of the people you follow on Instagram… All these make comparisonitis such an easy sickness to get. And comparisonitis can make you feel like you’re not good enough to do something. Which can end up with you feeling stuck.
When that happens, I want you to remember this:
Social media is a highlights reel.
People usually only post the good things that happen in their lives. The things “worth sharing.” (Except Twitter. Twitter is the John Bender of social media.)
This guy, I swear. (Source)
I remind myself this all the time. I forgot where I found it—I tried looking for it but my History tab and my memory are both jumbled mess—but I read somewhere that we all compare our real life to another person’s highlights reel online. And that doesn’t seem fair to yourself, isn’t it?
What the post said was so accurate for me that I whipped out a blank sheet of paper and wrote a line from the blog post that really stuck to me. I have it on my desk beside my computer where I can see it everyday.
I think I paraphrased this to make it shorter and fit the paper. So if you know where this is, let me know in the comments so I can fully credit them! 🙂
Somehow, reading this quote every morning or when I’m working on my desk gives me comfort. Knowing and constantly reminding myself that other people go through bad times too and that they also rarely share all this to the world makes me more empathetic, I guess. 🙂
How do you deal with feeling like you’re stuck in life? Share your wisdom in the comments below!
Friendly reminder that my blog birthday giveaway is still going on! You can win an art commission or a custom set of blog graphic elements including a blog header 😀
Interested? Click on the image below for more info.
This is actually an old post that I kinda made a huge overhaul on. Still have the same points as its older version 😉
Do you have that person in your school or workplace or neighborhood? That smart-Sheldon who won the chess tournament or happy-go-lucky-Larry who won employee of the year or Tracy-girl-next-door who baked the chocolate pie that got the highest-bid.
They have this light in them. Their sureness and confidence blind you, make you look away.
And then there’s you. A helium balloon. Floating aimlessly and letting yourself be carried away by circumstances. You look at them again and you think, “Man, they have everything figured out, don’t they?”
Yo that’s me too. The helium balloon. And you know what? I’m okay. It’s okay to not have everything figured out right now. Here’s why.
There are still so much to discover
The world around you extends beyond your reach. Think about that. There are still so many things beyond what you see in front of you and you can’t possibly know all of them all at once. There are simply so much more for you to discover. And not only around and beyond what you see; even inside you.
If you’re a fellow young adult, I’m willing to bet there are still parts of yourself that you don’t know much about.
And friend, that’s completely okay!
Like Shrek famously said, we have layers (although, I know he meant ogres. But c’mon! Even humans do right???) We’ve barely scratched the surface of who we are.
I like to think that the teenage years and early-twenties of your life are the time for self-discovery. This is when you’re starting to get a grasp of every bit of you—who you are and what inspires you and what you aspire to be.
So go ahead. Give yourself permission to explore both your outer and inner worlds.
We all have our own paces
So we’ve already agreed no one has it all figured out, right?
Well sometimes, it’s not accepting this fact that’s difficult. It’s believing this is true for you. It’s believing that it’s not necessary for you to have everything figured out right now. This is incredibly difficult to acknowledge, I know.
Whenever I think of where I am in my life at the moment, I always (always) end up comparing myself to others. It’s an annoying habit that I’m trying to end. Because it ends up with me thinking, “I should be at this point in my life right now” or “What am I doing wrong?” or “Just give up; this isn’t for me.”
Total killer of your self-esteem, I tell you.
I took a time off school last year and during the five months that I was away, I learned a whole new kind of scary things. But it was also during those five months that I learned I wasn’t part of any “rat race”.
I wasn’t “falling behind.”
I was, and am, simply trudging through life in my own pace, period. It took me going back to uni to have that registered in my brain, ya know. We should totally learn from turtles and sloths. They’re incredibly slow right? But what if they’re only incredibly slow in our perspective? Maybe they thrive at that pace. And thrive they certainly do. Just like how cheetahs thrive being the fastest animal on land.
We all run our lives at different paces. Quick or slow, it doesn’t matter so long as you reach your goal and have enjoyed the journey to get there.
You’ve got time
This relates to being at your own pace.
See, I think we have this belief that time is constantly slipping away from our hands. As if we need to achieve a certain number of things at a certain amount of time.
I mean look at Alexander Hamilton (why does he write like he’s running out of time?)
But don’t get me wrong, I’m all for making specific attainable goals. In fact I like making these kinds of tiny goals. The problem arises when we try to place ourselves in “standards.” Like by thirty years old you have to start thinking about starting a family. Um, no thanks?
Young adults, especially, are placed in immense pressure to think about their careers by age fifteen, some even younger. My family, bless them, never really put me and my siblings under pressure. My mom would always say, “Pssh don’t think too much about it. You’ll know it when you know it.” But society isn’t as kind, we all know that.
The point is, most teenagers are still patting our way in this maze called life. We take a wrong turn here and arrive at a dead-end there. We’re still starting to grasp life. Still identifying the many options laid out for us. It seems unfair to expect us to have it all figured out already, don’t you think?
I’m jealous of those awesome peeps who stride through their lives at a brisk, sure pace. In a way, they motivate me to be surer of every step I take. But because of that, I also empathize to those who are uncertain like me.
If you beat yourself up over not having things figured out, stop it. Here’s the truth, in its unfiltered un-sugarcoated state:
No one really has it all figured out. Not even Sheldon or Larry or Tracy. No matter how much it looks like they do.
Instead of wallowing up in self-pity (and I know firsthand how hard this part is) find comfort in knowing that you are not alone.
So here’s what you can do:
Give yourself permission to explore your world, the inner and outer ones. And, in your own pace, pat your way around the maze. Stop looking over how Sheldon or Larry or Tracy. This is a maze made especially for you. And finding your way through it is not going to be an overnight process.
It will definitely take time and dozens of wrong-turns and detours. But you’ll be fine. You got this.
Maybe you would get there. Maybe you wouldn’t. But on the way, you’ll pick up lessons and new experiences. Treasure those more and learn from them, because these are what you’ll be carrying with you to your next destination, wherever that will be.
Your turn: What are you working on at the moment? What’s happening in your life right now? Share it with me in the comments below! 🙂
Hey guys! I just wanted to let y’all know that starting October (aka tomorrow), I will only be posting on Saturdays. I want to give away some time to fully participate in Inktober so yeah 🙂 Don’t worry! I will still be active here (interacting with other blogs and dropping embarrassing fangirling comments) and on social media. I’m reconnecting with Bloglovin so if you have one, share ’em below so I can follow you, okay? Okay!
Hope y’all have an awesome October and see you all next Saturday! 😉
Remember in the last post when I said fear is kinda like a Boggart? And you know how I said that to defeat a Boggart the first step is to acknowledge it? It’s much like you should acknowledge your fears. It’s that wicked little Boggart living inside your head telling you you’re worthless. That you’re no good. Morphing into whatever form it is that you’re afraid of.
And I should know: that nasty creature has settled cozily in my mind for as long as I could remember.
So today, I’m gonna list down all the awful self-limiting thoughts and beliefs you have that’s holding you back. And help you come up with a Riddikulus, a charm spell, you could conjure to banish those nasty Boggarts living inside your head.
Take out your wand, folks. It’s time for those Boggarts to pack up and go somewhere else, yeah?
“I still have other things to do”
Isn’t it incredible how we could come up with these seemingly rational excuses to avoid doing what we’re afraid of doing? That we could justify why we aren’t taking action? I mean, take me for example. I’m really good at making rational and practical excuses to avoid sticking my neck out and taking a risk. (see: using school’s busy-ness to quit a monthly creative thing)
I keep convincing myself that I didn’t do this risky new thing or that scary challenge because I “had to prioritize and focus on what matters.” Wow, Kate, this rationalizing is beyond.
How to banish this Boggart:
Look, the challenging part of this particular Boggart is its enforcing the concept of making priorities. Which is actually good. I’ve shared to you how much prioritizing helps me at times when I feel like I’m on the verge of work overwhelm.
But you have to see the fine line between prioritizing to get things done and prioritizing to nurture your fear.
This is where self-reflection, what I talked about on the previous post, comes into the picture again. Think it through and ask yourself, “Am I using making priorities as an excuse to avoid facing my fears?”
If that’s a yes, here’s what you can do:
Think of all the mindless activities you’re constantly wasting your time on (like being on social media or playing EverWing) and think instead of what productive activity you can do during those times. Even simply giving yourself an hour every day to make progress at your little project goes a long way.
The important thing here is that you’re MOVING. Maybe at a turtle’s pace, but you’re gradually increasing the distance between you and the fear that’s holding you back from doing what you want to do.
“What I want is hard to achieve”
Most likely whatever it is that you wanted to do? It’s grand. It’s ambitious. It’s potentially life-changing. Sure, on the surface, it’s probably simple like, say, you want to hand-sew a gorgeous floral dress.
But you know deep inside that the moment you learn how to sew, the moment you master it, a whole new set of doors will open before you.
It’s not the act itself that’s grand. What’s grand and life-altering is its effect on your life.
And because you see it this way, you know it’ll be a big hurdle to go through. Usually, once you see how huge the obstacle you have to pass through is, your determination wavers. And you start creating another excuse: it’s unattainable.
Related: Check out how I learned to deal with big hurdles from a chicken
How to banish this Boggart:
Take that big ambitious goal of yours and divide it into small chunks. This is one lesson I learned from… well, everywhere, actually. Productivity gurus, lifestyle bloggers, everywhere. And there’s a reason everyone on the block is recommending it. Because it freakin works.
The point of dividing them into small chunks is to, in a way, build this mindset in your brain that your goal is achievable. Sure, your big ambitious goal is huge and unattainable. But the small goals can be done easily and it won’t take long.
I actually used this last year to achieve a blog goal (300 followers in 3 months. Can anyone believe I’m double that now? And by the way, thank you sooo much you lovely people! I promise I’ll give you cakes and goodies soon <3). But you know what? After reaching that blog goal, I stopped. I didn’t keep that momentum going. Which was a huge mistake on my part. I felt seemingly content with achieving my one goal. Which leads us to the next Boggart…
“I’m content in where I am now”
This one’s tricky because I do believe that the key to true happiness is to be able to live in the present and be thankful for what you have now. And like prioritizing, this is good. But also like prioritizing, this becomes bad if you use it to nurture your fears.
Remember: contentment does not equal settling for less.
How to banish this Boggart:
Look this is simple: if the life you have right now isn’t fulfilling, then be determined to make it better.
The tricky part is being able to step out of seeing your world through that filter of false contentment. Get out of the routine you’ve created for yourself. I often find that once you expose yourself to new things and ideas, you have a better grasp of knowing what fulfills you.
“I’m not good enough for this”
By jove, this is probably one of the nastiest Boggarts there is. It attacks from the inside viciously in a way that no other Boggarts on this list do. And the most vulnerable are those with low self-esteem and lack of self-worth.
It’s not anyone’s fault if they don’t have the confidence in their selves. This lack of confidence is a toxic culmination of all the negative thoughts we’ve conjured on our minds and all the negative words thrown at us at an early age. These negativity are like a virus. Once they’re inside you, they spread until it has left you weak and helpless.
How to banish this Boggart:
Ultimately, to banish this Boggart, you have to build your self-esteem. And I know from firsthand experience this is easier said than done. Loving yourself is a not an easy process, especially if like me, you grew up thinking lowly of yourself. That you really are not good enough.
Some things that have worked on me, albeit slowly but I don’t mind:
Write down all your negative thoughts and counter them with a positive trait you do have. Let’s take the example above of wanting to hand-sew a floral dress. Let’s say one reason you’re hesitating on doing your little sewing project is because you suck at using needles. In fact, you think you’re awful at sewing anything beyond buttons.
But you can counter this negative thought by thinking of a positive trait you have that can help you. Maybe you’re a visual learner so you can make use of YouTube to watch hand-sewing tutorials.
Instead of worrying about traits or skills you don’t have (yet), make use of what you do have at present.
“I’m not ready to do this”
We often like to believe that The Perfect Time exists. That time when you are finally ready and the world is ready and you have everything you need to get started. And we wait until it’s right around the corner. What usually happen is we end up feeling like we still have something lacking. And we think we’re still not ready for it. Which is why we end up not taking the first step at all.
How to banish this Boggart:
Here’s the thing. No one’s ever completely ready. Coming up with an idea or an inspiration needs at least an ounce of spontaneity. Sure, you can let that idea cook a bit in your mind but unless you take action, nothing’s really going to happen. For this Boggart, you only have to do one thing: act. Tell yourself that you are ready, even when you feel like you’re not. Fake it ’til you make it.
Your turn: I’m sure there are other Boggarts or self-limiting beliefs out there that’s holding others back. Do you have one (or three) in mind? What’s your Riddikulus spell to banish them? Share it in the comments below! 🙂
The gorgeous photo of the winter mountains above is by Natalie Toombs.
Seriously. I’m curious.
Think of something, just one thing, right now. Something that you’ve always wanted to do but never found the time. This urge deep, deep inside you that just wants out. It just screams to be shared to the world. But it didn’t get to.
What is it that’s holding you back? That’s making you hesitate to take the first step? That no matter how many times you’ve replayed Shia Labeouf’s iconic (and probably now a classic) motivation clip, you STILL didn’t do it?
Is it your need for perfection? Or is it procrastination? Is it maybe because you feel guilty? Or you have more important things to do? Or you feel like you’re not ready for it? That you’re not good enough?
I like to think there’s one word for it, whatever it is that’s holding you back:
I mean… perfectionism? That’s fear. Procrastination? Fear. Guilt? Busy-ness? Insecurity? F E A R.
Me + Fear = Self-doubt
At the start of the year, I planned this monthly creative thing. During each month, I was supposed to work on one huge illustration. It was supposed to be my 2017 creative project where I could improve on anatomy, get out of my creative comfort zone, practice putting more details on my work.
Now that I think about it, they’re all ambitious shenanigans.
Three months into it, I was still okay. I got to create illustrations that I was proud of, even now. But March was also the last month of our school year. Things got hectic and busy. I was meeting project deadlines. At the same time, deep inside me, doubt was starting to grow. Doubt on myself, mostly. On my art.
Utterly overwhelmed, I ran towards and hid behind the protection the busy-ness of school life provided. I had more important things to do, I reasoned out. I needed to make a priority. Funny thing, this was exactly what happened to me last year. I threw out everything not related to school.
My art, my blog, and *chokes* books.
That was hell, I tell you. And I regretted not having enough time for my hobbies.
I promised myself I wasn’t going to be like that this year. But, surprise surprise, I went back into that rabbit hole. Less than a year later.
Here’s another example:
I am a World-class Procrastinator™. Most times, I procrastinate because I’m lazy (especially in things like, you know, school). But sometimes I procrastinate in creating a blog post or doing this illustration that I’ve been planning in my head for a while now. And I constantly beat myself up over it.
Fear manifests into your life in so many ways
You might take a look at what’s holding you back and think, “Pssh, nah. That ain’t fear.” But if you look real close and think about it real hard, you’d realize that yes it is fear.
My refuge to busy-ness? That’s me avoiding the challenge I’ve set myself up because of self-doubt. Because I was afraid of failing that challenge. Being a creative procrastinator? That’s me fearing I won’t do what I imagined in my mind justice.
Like, you know how boggarts transform into that very thing you’re afraid of? How it turned into a giant spider for Ron and a dementor for Harry? That is the very essence of fear.
It morphs and takes different shapes, depending on the person that encounters it.
Now, I’m facing another encounter with fear. And it’s holding me back again. But this time’s different. I refuse to let it hold me back. I don’t want to feel awful at myself because I didn’t try to step away from my fear. Not anymore. And if you’re in a similar position as me right now, neither should you.
So what can we do about it?
Really, the first step to all this is knowing you’re afraid of something. And that fear is holding you back.
Sometimes we like to be in denial even with ourselves. I get it. My gosh, it can be sooo hard to be honest with yourself. Because truth is supposedly simple but it also hurts, which makes it so difficult to confront, let alone acknowledge.
So I always take the phrase “reflect on your actions” to heart. I try to give myself time and space alone to reflect on what I did and why I did it. Sometimes I reflect while doodling. Sometimes I’m just staring at my ceiling while the Hamilton soundtrack is playing in the background. I couldn’t care less, so long as I’m reflecting and acknowledging my flaws and fears.
If pure, staring-blankly-into-space reflection is hard for you, here are other ways you can reflect:
<3 Talk with someone—whether it’s a friend, or a confidante, or a professional
<3 Write an entry in your journal
<3 Meditate or do yoga
<3 Read books in a genre you rarely read
<3 Cook or bake
<3 Do pottery or other crafty activities
<3 Listen to relaxing music
When you’re at that point where you’re frustrated at yourself because you are not doing the thing that ignites your passion, it’s time to reflect. Ask yourself, “What is it that’s holding me back? What am I afraid of?”
Awareness is always the first step. The moment you are aware of your emotions and fears, the moment you acknowledge their existence, the rest is a little bit easier to deal with. At least that’s what I think 🙂
Check back here again next Wednesday for part two of this… Post? Impromptu series? Whatever you call it. 😉 I will talk about the rest of the steps you could take to step out of fear’s grasp and start doing what you’ve always wanted to do. For now, take the first step. And tell me:
Is there something you’ve always wanted to do but never got to? What’s holding you back? Is it fear just like mine? Do you take time for self-reflection? How do you reflect on your day?
I’d love to hear your stories and thoughts! 🙂
Okay, Kate. How in the world are color pencils connected to control and perfectionism???
If you’ll just read on, it’ll make sense. I promise. Or I hope it does. So here goes.
Yep. I’m a perfectionist.
Or well, I used to be a hardcore one…? Now, I’ve loosened up a bit. (I think. Kind of.) The thing is, I’ve always tried to look into every miniscule detail of what I do.
I wanted to make sure that everything, every last little thing, every single tiny microscopic little thing* was perfect. To a T. That includes my art. So while I’m drawing something, various anxious perfectionist questions pop out of my head like,
Is the anatomy alright?
Are the color combinations aesthetically pleasing?
Did I get the skin color right?
Are there any unnecessary marks?
Is that stray hair strand dramatic as I want it to look?
Or is it just totally awkward?
Oh god, it does look awkward, doesn’t it?
Why does the cactus look like a rotten, withered cucumber??
And why does her skin color look like Donald-freakin-Trump’s**???
I know right. Why am I stressing over a hair strand. Ugh.
The thing is, I used to avoid color pencils because, like watercolor before, they’ve given me artistic trauma***.
*Please tell me you knew this reference. Halloween is coming.
***Yes, it is a phrase. And yes, I’m exaggerating 😉
You know how when you use regular color pencils you have to put light pressure when sketching because it’ll be hard to erase if you don’t?
Yep, I learned that the hard, artistically traumatic way.
See, I’m the kind of person who has a really pressured penmanship. Sometimes I’m super focused on writing that I literally tear the paper in half.
It’s scary, I know.
And I also sketch that way. So you can just imagine little ten-year-old Kate who tried color pencils for the first time in her art class and ended up making this hot mess because she spent most of the time frustratingly erasing the color pencil.
Scarred, little Kate vowed to never touch a color pencil for the rest of her life. (Lol I should stop talking about myself in third person, it’s creepy)
Anyway, the point here is: little Kate is such a hardcore perfectionist. And back then, I wanted control in every aspect of my life, even my drawings.
I avoided color pencils and watercolor back then like the plague because I knew I won’t be able to have as much control with them as I do with pencils and pen. I wanted something I can easily control. But now that I think about it, you really can’t have that.
There are things that are totally out of your control.
This was so hard for me to accept, by the way.
Most likely because I was a stubborn perfectionist.
It always frustrated me when things get out of hand and everything becomes a hot mess and before I knew it I’m crying like a toddler who didn’t get her candy. But I’ve come to accept that there really are things that are uncontrollable. That no matter how you stubbornly want to micromanage things, they may not go the way you want it to be.
And you know what? No amount of effort on your part will make the uncontrollable controllable.
It’s harsh, but the truth is often that.
So instead of whining about how you can’t control the uncontrollable, focus instead on what you can actually control.
I tried to sketch with color pencils last week (much to ten-year-old Kate’s despair, I’m sure) and I thought, “If color pencils aren’t easily erasable, I’ll just have to try to put as light a pressure as I possibly could.”
Let me tell you: that first time was sooo hard. I had to squint my eyes to see the lines and in several occasions, I was sooo tempted to darken them. But I can’t control the unerasable-ness of the color pencil. So I had to control my pressure instead.
The whole ten or so minutes was an exercise to my perfectionism and need for ultimate control. But when I finished the sketch, I was so delighted with how it turned out!
It looked so good and, compared to a graphite pencil sketch, it looked so soft and feminine! Why didn’t I do this before??
Oh right. My control-needing perfectionism was hindering me.
And maybe, if you’re a perfectionist (or at least an aspiring micromanager) like yours truly, it’s hindering you to try out new things too. Maybe you’re stuck in the morning traffic and you’re already late and you sorely wished to be like Hancock and just throw all the cars in front of you.
But you’re not Hancock. And the morning traffic happen every-freakin-day. So instead of trying (and failing) to control it, wake up early.
So I want you to think of all those things you didn’t do or plans you cancelled or frustrations you’ve had because of something you can’t control. Think of the color pencil you were avoiding like the plague. Now think of what you can change. Try to look at it at a different angle and see what controllable thing you can do instead.
Who knows? Maybe, like me, you’d delightfully think: “Why didn’t I do this before?” 😉
Let’s talk, yeah? Are you a perfectionist? Have you avoided something like the plague because you’re afraid you can’t completely control the outcome? What did you do? Do share them in the comments below!
Have an awesome day! <3
I’m pretty sure most of us have experienced this.
It’s kinda like a thief in the night. You don’t know when you’re gonna have it. Maybe you just woke up, or you’re studying for your majors, or watching a duck live its fabulous life. And then suddenly, you’re struck with a toxic thought:
I am not enough.
It’s just one thought, one single thought, but it bears so much power that it could lead to other toxic thoughts. It’s like a wobbly chip at the edge of a domino chain. The moment it falls, everything else follows.
And a domino chain of toxic thoughts could be the most awful feeling you could possibly have.
You need to press pause when it happens. You need to remind yourself that you are enough. Here are 5 powerfully motivating reminders for when it happens.
1 | You’re achieving just by living
This is a brilliant quote I got from the ever-inspiring Bianca Bass. And she’s absolutely right. The fact that you are here right now, that you’re living and striving to get past every obstacle thrown your way is more than enough. It shows that you are growing. It shows that you are resilient and strong enough to get through life’s obstacles.
And let’s be real here, this whole being a human thing can be pretty difficult — even Bianca Bass thinks so!
Everyone has no idea what they’re doing 80% of the time. Everyone is struggling with their own inner (and outer) demons. You don’t have to do everything all at once. No one faults you for not being perfect, okay? Absolutely no one.
2 | You matter. Always.
I know this is hard to see, sometimes. It is especially difficult when you’re wrapped tightly around the thought that you don’t matter. And you have this nagging feeling that no one thinks you do.
But try to get past that. Look beyond the fog blurring your mind and you’ll see. There are people who look at you with concern in their eyes. Who look at you and see you. And the first person you should look beyond that fog? You.
Stand in front of the mirror. If it hurts to look at your reflection at first, grab one of those compact ones and bring it close enough that all you can see is your eyes. And remember: Those eyes know you matter. They know.
3 | You have made the best of difficult moments
Remember #1? When I said you were striving past every obstacle handed to you?
Now, think of all the awful situations you’ve been in before. Look over your shoulder to them. Then look at where you are now.
You got through them.
Isn’t that amazing? I think it’s amazing. And maybe you brought with you scars — most of the time, it does. But you are here. And everything you’ve passed through is over there waaay back behind you. This reminds me of that line in Hamilton’s “That Would Be Enough.”
“Look at where you are
Look at where you started
The fact that you’re alive is a miracle
Just stay alive, that would be enough”
4 | You are bigger than any obstacle
You are stronger than any difficult situation. Remember those past obstacles you got through? Use them as a reminder that whatever else you’ll face ahead, you can get past it, too.
Think about it. So far, your success rate of getting past all those obstacles is 100%. Someone once said — I forgot who it was — that humans were built in such a way that they always get to where they need to be. And I think that is so true. We may go through detours and u-turns and some awfully long pit stops. But eventually, we get to where we need to be.
5 | Have faith that everything will come together
I know that when you’re at your lowest, this can seem far-fetched and fictional. Sometimes I still catch myself thinking, “Really? Something good is out there? Why does that seem foolishly hopeful?” But do you really think that pain is just there for no purpose other than to let you suffer?
Actually, you can think that.
You can think everything and everyone exist to be against you. And the problems you are facing? Maybe they’re only there just to hurt you.
OR, you can learn from them. You can carry with you the lessons you learn from every experience you’ve gone through. You can look at that scar as a reminder. That you are strong and there is something beyond those challenges. And you can bring the experiences with you forward into your journey.
I understand how hard it must be when your entire being feels like it’s drowning in worries and doubts and toxic thoughts. You’d feel worthless. But please know that you are MORE than that.
You are not worthless.
You deserve happiness and assurance and the most awesome rainbow Mother Nature can provide.
Because you are you.
And that is enough. You are enough.
If you ever need someone to talk to, please don’t hesitate on contacting me via email or through my social media accounts. All my inboxes are always open for you 🙂
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