Most of us are pretty hard on ourselves. I bet you’re tougher on yourself than you are on anyone you love, right?
There are so many layers to the way we treat ourselves and the kind of expectations we have of ourselves. Somehow (this is thoroughly discussed elsewhere by those far more equipped to discuss the effects of our society & environment on us than I am) we believe we must be perfect.
We must be right. We must never be wrong. We must be the perfect woman, wife, mother, partner, daughter, carer…
We always feel we could have done better, must try harder, must have a perfect house, have dealt with that pile months (years) ago.
You’re doing Keto, yet you find yourself digging into the kids Nutella with a spoon every night after they go to bed? You’re feeling so completely overwhelmed by the mess that you feel like giving up, so you do everything you can to avoid getting it sorted.
You Really Are Doing Your Best
Pressure can creep up on us. It can also descend on us like us tonne of bricks. Both can linger for years depending on the source. If it’s your nature to be highly conscientious, and overthinking and overdoing are just part of your nature, this pressure will follow you where ever you go.
If it’s from an external source you might feel like you have no control over it. Mostly, everyone’s concept of pressure is different. However, there are some that we all share and understand.
You only have so much precious energy.
Being responsible for everything is exhausting.
Feeling like you have no control over your life and home drains your energy.
Constant excessive demands on your time will drain your energy.
Feeling guilt, sorrow or fear will drain you of your energy.
Dealing with constant negativity, abuse or aggression will consume your energy.
I want you to know that you are amazing for managing what you can. I hope that you can free yourself from the worst that you’re dealing with. When you come out the other side, you WILL feel different. You will notice that you can do more than you used to. But please be kind to your former self. She did her absolute best under the circumstances.
So you couldn’t manage the piles of stuff all over the place. You never got on top of your laundry. You yelled more than you feel you should’ve. That’s ok. You did your best.
Take It Easy on Your-Sweet-Self
You’re pretty darn amazing. Don’t believe me? Or,Yes, you say, I AM! But you catch yourself beating yourself up about something. Ok, so you think: I’m MOSTLY amazing. Some of the time. At my core…
The stuff that’s laying around because you just don’t have the will power to deal with it?
On top of everything else, you just can’t bring yourself to pick those things up?
Are you an anxious wreck most of the time, exhausted, foggy headed, heart racing?
You’re probably underestimating the energy that’s required to do, well, pretty much everything. We all have different reserves of energy. You’ll know someone who is a machine in your eyes. They’re incredible. They’re perfect in every way, get SO much done, seem to function on minimal sleep. They’re pretty rare you know, a bit like super models, and we know many of them don’t actually live the life we think they do.
I’m not just talking about physical energy. The mental energy of being Responsible For Everything takes a lot out of us.
Coordinating family schedules, making appointments, dealing with tradies, getting ready to go to school and work, fighting with the kids over what they will or will not wear, eat or do, all of these things take a toll on your precious limited energy.
Every single thing we do, every choice or decision we make, sucks more energy out of the reserves we have. With that in mind, just look at what you have been able to do. You’re pretty darn amazing, don’t forget that.
And forgive yourself for not being that perfect person you think you should be.
Make Your Life Better
Here’s an idea – Every choice you make from now on should be designed to make your life easier. Better. Simpler.
You might only now have the energy to do something about your home, your environment. You might only now realise that you need it to be better. Or maybe you knew all along and beat yourself up about it, but you just couldn’t do anything about it. Until now.
Let’s get radical here:
~ Forgive yourself immediately for what ever it is that you think you’ve done, or haven’t done. Whether it’s something recent or old stuff that keeps coming up, feeling terrible is not helping. Swat those awful feelings to one side and do better. Take note of what happened, take note of how you felt. Learn from it and do better.
~ Just because your mother cleaned the house, doesn’t mean YOU have to. Someone else can do it or you can be part of your family team who is responsible for keeping the house clean. You could even get a cleaner. Yes, even if you’re at home with the kids, if you can budget for it.
~ Just because you were raised with a sense of keep-everything-just-case doesn’t mean you have to. Your limited energy reserves are tapped out just a little bit every time you have to wrestle with a cupboard full of crap, that you can’t even see the back of.
~ You and your family will still have a happy life if you only have one set of dinnerware, just the linen and towels you need for a two week wash cycle, no free rubbish from corporates who are trying to trick your money out of you.
~ Move towards simple. Think differently about the things that are trying to get into your home – Instead of thinking YAY More Stuff! Defend your self and your home against these things trying to get into your home and clutter the place up.
Give yourself a break from too much. Give your self a break, full stop.
And forgive yourself.
Liz The Tidy Lady