Talk to somebody!!!

(Advice I need to get better at following.)

My wedding is next month. We’re planning it and paying for everything ourselves, and so there’s been lots of logistical crap to figure out and a bunch of loose ends to tie up. The stress of it all PLUS normal stressors like work and life in general caught up to me [seemingly] out of nowhere. It hit me hard, friends. It hit me hard.

On top of all of the “to-dos” and general anxieties, I also had feelings of guilt. I’d been feeling like I’ve been an inattentive daughter/friend/sis/partner because my focus has been on this one big thing. My solution, of course, was to write all of this down. This practice usually suits me fine, but it just didn’t cut it. I did not feel better. I just felt alone and chaotic.

Photo by Blake Cheek

So, one day last week, I reached a sort-of boiling point and decided to call my mom. I cried into the phone and expressed everything to her. She calmly and lovingly told me that I needed to stop feeling guilty and that the people I love understand what I’ve got on my plate at this moment in time. She told me that what I felt was perfectly normal, temporary, and that I needed to stop being so hard on myself. At the end, she even added that from her point of view, I’ve been dealing extremely well with all of this wedding-related stress. (Bless her heart.)

A journal or list can’t say that kind of stuff to me. They can’t give me that type of attention and comfort. They can’t give me that additional point of view so clearly. I needed to hear all those things from someone I trust.

I’m not sure why, time and time again, I let myself forget how important it is to share what I’m feeling with others. I’m better at it than I used to be, but it’s still a work-in-progress situation. Perhaps writing this post and having it floating out in the ether will help me to remember.


Keeping my sh*t to myself.

Lately, I’ve really been enjoying NOT sharing my goals with my closest friends and family 🙂

A few weeks back, I told my boyfriend that for the time being, I’m going to shut up about the things I want to do or work on. I said that I’d rather keep those things to myself until I feel I’ve made some progress. He replied “Oh sh*t, I was just reading a similar thing on Reddit/LifeProTips about that!” He said that the Reddit user wrote about the idea that it’s often better to keep your goals a secret, at least until you’ve taken real action or have some results to share. I read the post and looked into the idea some more, and found that it was actually a thing. Don’t get me wrong, I was not about to think I came to this idea completely on my own. I’m sure I heard it in passing a while back and threw it onto the back burner [of my mind] until I was actually ready to receive it. Well, that time had come.

Photo by Gesina Kunkel

I shared with a friend that I would love to start exercising in the morning as soon as I wake up. I told her that I want to start waking up half an hour earlier than normal, throw on workout gear right away (because that’s what they all say to do), and do 10 minutes on the bike followed by some crunches and planks. I told her how excited I was, that I was going to start small and work my way up, and that it’s going to really improve my mornings and my mood. Yea, so, that was about about 2 months ago now and that morning exercise regimen has yet to exist.

This has been a common occurrence in my life. I get really amped up about the thing I want to do (e.g. eat healthier, save more money), I talk about it with people, and I begin to picture myself doing the thing. What happens then is that it starts to feel like it has already happened; like I’ve already started… and I am filled with happiness from this. I’m filled with pride. BUT WHY? I haven’t even done anything yet!

Visualization is a powerful tool. Many athletes and high-powered people use it daily to get what they want and get themselves where they want to be. It’s something many of us do without thinking, but when you do it intentionally and wield it in the right way, you can truly benefit from it. Go read about it; it’s cool.

What I came to know is that when I talk about the thing I want to do, that’s the moment it feels real and that’s the moment where I begin to unintentionally visualize it [aaaand cue the endorphins, cue the false sense of pride, prepare to fizzle out]. That’s when I decided to experiment with the idea of keeping my mouth shut. Instead of talking to my pals about the thing I want to do, I will wait and talk to them about the thing I’m doing. Instead of allowing myself to feel proud of something I haven’t even done yet, I’ll wait and save that delicious feeling for later when I truly deserve it.

Well, OF COURSE I had to wait a few weeks to write about this because I wanted to talk about it after doing it for a while. So far, I am so pleasantly surprised by how good this little change in behavior is for me. By not openly discussing something before I do it, I keep myself from accidentally unlocking those feelings of pride, and that drive to actually get started remains in tact and gets me going.