It’s Sunday night – well, Tuesday morning by the time I’ll be posting – and I’ve been staring at this damn computer screen for around 3 hours flitting between writing three different blog posts, with none of them any closer to being finished, so I’m going to go a little off-kilter with this one instead…
Sometimes we get a little too stuck on overdrive. Remember my post about life admin the other week? And I said sometimes we’re like hamsters running about on a never-ending wheel of to-do lists? It feels like that wheel has just been relentlessly turning but I’m too afraid to get off!
The past couple of weeks have been intense. I officially handed my notice in at my job this month so that I can take the leap into full-time blogging as of the 1st of February, and since then it’s been meeting after meeting, breakfasts and brunches and lunches with no me-time or down-time or even sit down and fucking do some blogging-time. My latest YouTube video was edited over the space of four-five hours whilst I was in bed with a major hangover from my leaving drinks on Friday, and suddenly I’m hoping I can retract my notice because I’m not sure if I’m cut out for this full-time blogging thing?! Ughhhh.
Mind fog is the worst.
We all love it when things are going well, and if you’re anything like me you can get strangely addicted to being busy. It makes you feel all grown up and important. We’re so used to being in girl boss mode and trying to have it all, that things can get a little crazy and out of hand. Women are naturally great hustlers after all.
Plus, the pressure of seeing everyone else on the internet girl-bossing it only makes it even worse. Social media highlights everyone’s best moments, turning the whole notion of “keeping up with the Jones'” to keeping up with the Jones’, the Smith’s, the gorgeous exotic couple in that trendy flat, that cool girl you went to college with, and that sickeningly gorgeous woman you stalk on a daily basis. So quite naturally, if we step off, we feel like we’re going to fall behind everyone else’s shiny lives.
But before we know it, our feet are off the ground and we can’t quite anchor ourselves and we start to let things slip. We don’t get things done. And the we mentally punish ourselves for it. The guilt we get for not completing our tasks is totally normal, yet totally unnecessary. Sometimes, it’s okay to not feel okay and be a little negative, no matter what all these BS January resolutions and #goals posts are telling you.
I’ve written before about the crippling pressure that perfectionism causes, how it affects my relationships, my work, my blog, my appearance, and my opinions, and it strikes again in times like this. We get caught in a loop where we get stressed
Can’t finish our work
Get stressed that we can’t finish our work
Try to finish our work
Still can’t finish it because our heads are all fuzzy
Feel even worse about not being able to finish our work
Andddddddd eventually give up after several attempts and a couple of hours that could have been spent doing something that makes you feel good instead. Like eating chocolate. Or paradoxically, exercising. Watching Ryan Gosling films. Watching Ryan Gosling on YouTube. Looking at Ryan Gosling memes. Watching Ryan Gosling gifs. Oh GOD you have no idea how much I wish I spent the past three hours looking at Ryan Gosling on the internet instead of writing a load of crap.
So like any normal woman in her twenties that’s moved out but still tags onto her family’s SkyGo and Netflix accounts, I called my mum. And like all mum’s, she came out with some absolutely stellar advice: take a break. The world will not stop because you do. You’ll be more angry at yourself for producing poor work than if you take a couple of days off and come back to it.
Fuuuuuuuck. Mothers literally know everything. It’s so simple, but so comforting when it comes from them. And sometimes you just need someone to give you permission to do just that – it justifies it.
So whether it’s working on your dissertation, essay, blog post, novel, or powerpoint presentation and it’s not happening in your head, don’t force it. No good things are going to come from beating yourself up about it all. Take a break, because you need it and deserve it. And go and watch some Ryan Gosling on the internet for God’s sake (you can thank me for this video below later)