Okay, it’s not spring yet– I get that. But it’s close enough, and if you’re in LA, like me, it feels like summer already.
2017 is here, and as I look back, I find myself dwelling on some of my struggles– and while some were physical, many were emotional, which is a whole other bag of dirt. I felt like clearing my thoughts out and looking forward. To do that, I have to look backwards a bit.
In 2016, I had a lot of setbacks that slowed me down.
-Buying a house
But these things on their own, while big, mostly acted as the focus points for my internal demons. Because DUN DUN DUN, depression comes in many forms, and when you tell yourself that “I’m fine, I’m just dealing with real issues!” you miiiiight be ignoring some important junk up in your head-meats.
If you’ve read some of my other blog posts (I don’t make many) you’d see some talk about my past. This only factors in to the point that I want to say my addictive, workaholic nature was born from being poor and never feeling important enough, or good enough, unless I was making money.
I saw some of this blossom when I was in my twenties and hustling for dollars. But it didn’t really come out until I started writing, and got my first taste of effort=cash flow.
So here I am in 2016, thinking “I’ve got more responsibilities than ever. It doesn’t matter how injured I am, or how messed up my hormones are from having a baby recently, or how stressful it is knowing we have to move from a rental into a damn actual house in just 30 days. The only thing that matters is that I make myself work hard, because that will solve my problems.”
Anyone who says money doesn’t solve problems is kind of a jerk/and or liar.
But they’re right that after a certain point, money doesn’t do anything for you. And then beyond that, what happens when you CAN’T work? What do you do when all the stress around you is crashing down, and you KNOW working harder will solve things, and not just that, but now you HAVE to work this hard because you set up a base level of expectation in your damn brain and…
Look. My rambling here is to say that the mistake I made in 2016 was trying to do everything.
I even recognized it several times, but decided “Eh, it’ll be fine. I’ll slow down eventually.”
When you think you can only be loved because of how hard you work/your level of success/making enough to just feed you and your family, you WILL KILL YOURSELF. You will not slow down until you are DEAD.
I don’t want to die. So for 2017, I am going to be more mindful of treating myself. I’ll try and slow down where I can.
I’m going to more conventions, speaking more to other authors, meeting more readers, and hanging out with my husband and kid.
And I know I have to do these things to heal emotionally. Surgery fixed my ACL, the house is bought, I’m not having another kid/growing one inside of me. The big things were relatively patched.
My internal broken bits were not.
The scariest thing is even as I type this, I have a list in front of me of stuff to get done today. And this week. And the next X months.
But I won’t make it through another few years of this if I don’t take a minute to remind myself that it is OKAY to slow down. It really is. I don’t want to be the cliche that looks back and says, “Where did all my time go?” or “None of that was worth it.”
I listened to Catherine Bybee and Jennifer Probst speak about hiring people to save your sanity back in October at InDscribe. It sat with me deeply, and I worked at making myself learn to delegate. That has helped IMMENSELY but I still need more.
If you have tips for slowing down but still running your business/getting things done, let me know. Oh, and tips on being kind to yourself/self-therapy are great too.
Thanks for reading my crazy thoughts!