I get anxious like that sometimes when I write!
And I don’t want to feel anxious!
I want to feel better …NOW!
I sometimes distract myself by eating… playing a game on my phone… scrolling Facebook… having a drink… puttering around my house… doing the dishes… painting & drawing… going for a walk… writing… dancing… cutting my hair… calling a friend… driving my car fast with Halestorm blasting on the stereo… screaming and throwing things… complaining about how unfair everything is… judging other people… rearranging and reorganizing everything in my desk, closet, and bathroom…
There are about a zillion actions I can take to feel better IN THE MOMENT.
None of these are necessarily GOOD or BAD things.
Eating feeds and fuels us… and can also make us unhealthy or overweight.
My closet COULD use some reorganization…. and I could waste HOURS making it perfect.
Walking, calling a friend, dancing, painting … even screaming and yelling and throwing things could be classified as either good or bad. There’s a shop in my town where you PAY THEM MONEY to let you break china and glass and take a baseball bat to a TV!
So what’s the problem with these distractions?
The problem is the RESULTS I’m getting from indulging in the distraction.
When I spend all day on my phone and wonder why I got nothing done all day… I get angry and trash talk MYSELF.
I create a negative loop of disappointment and frustration which leads to anxiety and MORE distraction!
I berate myself with:
- I’m so pathetic!
- I’m such a loser!
- I’ll never make this work!
- I’m not good at this.
And that IS NOT how I want my life to look.
Healthy mind and body, good friends, money in the bank, thriving business, happy home… THAT’S what I want!
Now… how do I create that?
First, I set a goal: send out this newsletter to help people stop burning out, hating their life, or getting caught in a cycle of self-sabotage.
Great goal, RIGHT??
YES! So I put it on my calendar for right now, today… this exact moment! (Okay, it was actually a few days ago by the time you’re reading it, but it‘s RIGHT NOW to me!)
Next, choose to allow myself to FEEL whatever comes up for me while I’m writing it.
Honestly, I’m kinda nervous about you reading it!!
Is it boring? Is it vague? Is it helpful? Is it confusing?
These are all thoughts that cause me to feel ANXIOUS and WORRIED and I begin looking for distractions.
There’s my phone … on my desk.
I’ve picked it up three times in the last 30 minutes.
Each time, I have the thought “I’m just going to…
- Look something up!
- Check the time!
- Find a quote!
- Check how to spell Shyuh La Buff… Shaya LuBuf… Shea la Butter?
But, I know my brain’s LYING TO ME!
It just wants to stop feeling anxious!
But if I gave in… I’d never get this letter written.
I’d be watching Shia’s video for the hundredth time!
This letter would still be in the DRAFTS folder on my computer.
So… what did I do? How did I finish?
I ALLOWED THE FEELING OF NERVOUSNESS.
I sat at my desk, started writing, and FELT ANXIOUS.
I had a little chat with my brain and reminded myself I’m safe.
There’s no danger. Nothing is wrong.
Anxiety is an EMOTION… not a fault in my system… not something wrong with me.
It’s a normal, human, reaction to a perceived fear and it doesn’t hurt me.
Do you know what hurts?
Looking back at all the moments I could have created something awesome and I let anxiety stop me.
Thinking of all the drafts that are currently on my computer that no one will ever see!
Spending another day doing ANYTHING except what I wanted to accomplish and going to bed with a feeling of having wasted another day. UGH!!
“BEING WITH MY EMOTIONS” is one of the most powerful productivity tools I’ve ever learned to use.
YOU can learn it too.
Perhaps you have a list of things to accomplish and as soon as you began thinking about it… you get tense… stressed… anxious… and you pick up your phone and block it all out.
Pick something on your list. Look at WHY you want to do it.
REALLY!! What makes it so important?
Feel whatever feelings come up for you when it’s time to do it.
Like Carrie Fisher says, “Feel the fear and do it anyway.”
Stop making the fear and anxiety and nervousness wrong.
They are normal. They’re emotions. They cannot hurt you.
Shia Lebouf says, “DO THE THING!!” He says it very loudly, but it’s still true.
The only reason you don’t do the thing you want to do is because you’re afraid to feel the feeling you have to feel to accomplish it.
Get through it by FEELING it.
This is MIND MANAGEMENT. This is THOUGHT WORK.
I’m going to send the email out now even though it feels undone.
Perhaps I haven’t answered all your questions. Perhaps you’ll unsubscribe.
Or maybe you’ll do that hard thing you’ve been putting off.
Let me know what you do.
P.S. You GOT this!
If you want more peace of mind and better relationships, join us in our Facebook group Make Love, Not Drama! 💚