What Am I So Afraid Of?

I had a plan for today. To sit down, work on stuff for my freelance clients, have a call with another freelance client, and move forward with cleaning my house. Tomorrow, my goal is to schedule the week ahead. Really dive in and create a schedule. Routine is my friend.

I’ve decided that I haven’t been really prioritizing anything in my life, but mostly floating around, going from day to day, watching Netflix instead of working on things. And I’m reading the book You Are A Badass by Jen Sincero, one of my twelve books on healing and self-development for this year, and she’s like “dude, you can’t focus on everything.” So I even picked my things. I want to focus on my relationship with my husband (which has been taking a hit due to my basic inability to commit to anything these days and follow through), my relationship with myself (including getting more sleep, exercising and respecting my body, and not drinking anymore), and my business.

Because I can’t do everything.

And earlier this week, Dave and I had dinner together. And, again, on Thursday, we had my one on one meeting – he is also my boss. And both as a friend and as my employer this week, he said versions of the same thing – “the only thing in your way is you.”

I know why I am the way I am. I know where my habits come from. I have dragged my lies, and shame, and tears into the light, and I’ve exposed them to a safe person. I’m working through them. I have discovered the root of them. I’m grieving. And that isn’t going to be a quick process and it will continue but I believe I’m almost at the point where that can continue in the therapy room. I am at the point where unless something knocks me down I have more good days than bad. I’m at the point where I go days without thinking about the grief, or the fear, or the past. I’m at the point where focusing on the future and the present is what I need to do.

I need to move my body, to trust myself, to build up my defences and boundaries, to work at getting to know me and continuing to challenge that narrative that is my default. But, I’m at the point where I recognize that, I know what I need to do.

So why am I not doing it.

This is the question I had in the shower not five minutes ago. I had a plan today. It was a good plan. It was a plan that keeps my business afloat, keeps my relationship happy, and helps me structure things. It’s a plan that I am happy with. Earlier this week, I told Dave I’m so afraid of new things because I don’t know who I am and what if I make bad choices and he told me to ask myself, whenever I do something, “is this in line with who I see myself as.” And when I ask myself the question Dave asked me this week, all of what I want to accomplish today, this month, falls into that category.

I’m putting off anything that drives me forward. I’m putting off getting a passport and claiming benefits, both things that would help me with my honeymoon and my relationship. I’m putting off doing reporting for clients and building my business and my logo design and all of those things. I’m putting off working on myself. But why. 

What am I so afraid of?

Until I have that answer, I am worried I’m going to watch Netflix all day every day and live in a mess and drink and fight with my husband for the sake of fighting. I have goals, I have a plan, I know where my limitations come from, I understand myself right now better than I ever have in my life.

Dave says he thinks there is a part of me that enjoys being broken, or identifying as broken. And he isn’t wrong. He says that I have come so far in the time he knows me. My husband reflects that too. And Lu. They all back me on this one. They all see me at the precipice of great change, at the precipice of being my best self, and yet I’m so afraid to jump.

Until I figure this out, I’m going to be stuck at square 75 of a 100 square journey.

Why am I so afraid? I am crippled by inaction and fear. And I try to sit with it, and I even asked myself today “honey, what are you so afraid of? I don’t understand. I don’t know why we can’t get over this mental barrier.” And I got mostly crickets. Snippets of ‘it will never be good enough so why try’ and ‘it won’t matter in the end because I’m never good enough anyways’. But mostly crickets.

I’m afraid, but I don’t know exactly of what, and its really keeping me from reaching the goals I want, the potential I have, and getting the life I so deserve.

I told this to Dave. And my husband. And both said “does questioning this get you closer to doing things.” And “just do them. Do them, if they align with who you want to be. Just act.”

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23 thoughts on “What Am I So Afraid Of?

  1. Aw geez, it’s starting to look like Netflix is all of our Enabler. 😉
    I agree with what everyone else has said. I also am my own worst enemy, a bad perfectionist streak that renders me frozen.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I get this, I understand exactly where you’re coming from. Netflix is a great distraction and I am right there with you. And I’m there with you in having our identity tied up in being broken.
    Sometimes, we have to just force ourselves to act and to do things. “Fake it til you make it”, if you will. It sounds like, mentally, you know you should do things, but emotionally you don’t. I get that too. I feel like you and I are stuck at the same exact spot. Sending you so much care, because this is such a tough, tough place to be.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I love Netflix. Took everything in me to not tune out again this morning and instead to turn on my computer and start doing some work.

      I feel like we are stuck in the same spot too, and that actually makes me feel better. Less alone. Solidarity, strong. Xx

      Liked by 1 person

      • It gets really bad when you start doing housework to avoid things. Yesterday I used vacuuming as a distraction (wth???). I’m contemplating washing my car too to distract.
        Yes, definitely solidarity. We are here together, and it sucks, but we can’t be here forever… right? ❤

        Liked by 1 person

      • Right. I remind myself this isn’t a linear journey, and it is a journey, and that at least I am not waking up wanting to kill myself every day and fighting that battle.

        There has been progress and will continue to be progress.

        Liked by 1 person

      • You’re welcome. Thank you for helping me remember that.

        There are a lot worse places to be, worse paths we have travelled – and as much as this sucks and hurts (and it does a hell of a lot) I wouldn’t turn around for anything.

        Liked by 1 person

      • I’m really proud of you. That last sentence really stopped me and made me think. It used to be so easy, didn’t it? Right now, it’s incredibly hard. But to know that you wouldn’t go back (I wouldn’t either)… that says a lot about us.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Well PD, maybe you’ve gotten so used to having that feeling of being broken to the point where it’s become part of your identity, and maybe you’re afraid of letting that part go. Perhaps, you’re not sure what would happen if you took that leap and freed yourself, it’s a scary thing. Most, if not all, of us are afraid of uncertainty and unfamiliar territory.

    This post really resonated with me too because I also have/had this feeling of being broken sometimes, so I know what you mean and how you feel. Thanks for sharing dear.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Psy I think you’re right. It is a part of my identity. So much of my identity was formed around what was going on with my brother.. and now he’s not part of my life I feel a little lost.

      Thanks for saying it resonated with you, and thanks for commenting (it’s nice to have you back, friend)

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Rather than “enjoying being broken, or identifying as broken” might it not be just a form of keeping your head down and presenting a smaller target? I think the fear that “if I get something good I will be forced to give it away, or it will taken from me, so I should either not try, or hide my gains from everybody including myself” seems pretty logical to me from what you’ve said previously about having to give things of yours to your brother, and the extension of that is that the big, externally visible changes that would result from actions like building your business would feel threatening. Don’t judge yourself too harshly.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Wow wow wow. Thank you DV.

      Thank you. “Presenting a smaller target”

      And if I get something good I will be forced to give it away or it will be taken from me or I will be denied it in the first place.

      Yes. I feel like I can breathe. Thank you for finding words for this for me.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. I wouldn’t have thought that you enjoy being broken. It is familiar. Familiar is safe. But fair enough if you actually agree with that comment! Maybe you’re just not quite ready to take that leap and achieve your full potential. It sounds like you have had a busy week with therapy in there too. I tend to need at least one day of the weekend to do nothing or very little. Most days are so mentally and physically draining. But that is shit for your finances.
    It’s good to see that you have those people around you who are honest and can be objective. They wouldn’t leave you if you became more successful. Doing what is right for you will hopefully make you more relaxed and able to enjoy your marriage, for example. It’s not logical but I understand. Knowing that it’s not logical is good!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Hey PD! I’m glad to see that you’re able to ask yourself these questions. They’re not easy questions. Nothing about getting to the root of your problems is ever easy. Facing those truths is even harder. The line, “part of me that enjoys being broken, or identifying as broken” resonated with me because I definitely really relate to this piece. It’s so easy for others to say, “Well you’re here now. So jump.” but they have no idea what’s going on in our heads. The anxiety, the fear of change, the fear of the unknown. I think for me, I’m afraid to take the big steps sometimes because I am afraid that I will not be able to love myself enough and that I won’t be able to find someone else who might love me the way I should be loved. I’m also afraid of the humiliation of failure. Like you, I also agree that it’s irrational. I know I have the potential, I know I deserve it. And yet, it’s hard to make the decision and go with it. Self-doubt really is a bitch…. I hope that you and I both will be able to reach a point where we *can* see ourselves through with the big changes that we need to make.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hey JL! Nice to hear from you 🙂

      They are not easy questions, are they. It really is for those people (especially my two most logical and influential people in my life) to be like – what are you waiting for. Jump. But they don’t carry the baggage I do BUT I also don’t want to use that as an excuse. This is hard stuff! No wonder people quit.

      I am so afraid of failure too. I hope we both get there. Xx

      Liked by 1 person

      • YES! That’s definitely understandable from my point of view but that’s also because I, like you, have that baggage to carry. I get what that’s like. It’s not easy when you think that if you don’t hold on to that baggage that you’ll somehow lose a part of you – that somehow your identity is entrenched in you keeping yourself in the awful mess that has been your life for as long as you can remember…

        Yeah, S tells me that recovery is not a straight line upwards and that many people find it hard to accept that they can be in recovery and still feel so bad.

        Liked by 1 person

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