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Self-care Blog

What I Learned When I Did A Stress Audit

Mar 01, 2014

I always thought of myself as a positive person. Well, I am a positive person on the outside but I never realized that in my head I carried a lot of fear, worry, and doubt. In my head, I had an image of what people who lived in fear were like and that wasn't me. I had taken many opportunities in my life that would seem crazy to other people so I certainly didn't live fear I thought. I laugh all the time so no way did I live in fear. My life was moving forward so I couldn't be paralyzed by fear?

Now I was a worrier for sure. It mostly resulted from three things:

1. Being disorganized. My email inboxes were unmanageable and I couldn't manage to get anywhere on time. I could never find my keys in the morning which made it hard to get out the door. I always had four metro cards in rotation because I often misplaced them. My to-do list...what to-do list? Most days they weren't that useful for me. I tried electronic versions, notebooks, and post-it notes but none of those systems really worked for me. In my mind, it wasn't such a problem because I always got everything done and had the titles to show for it. People found me dependable but had no idea what I went through to meet their deadlines. But it didn't have to be that way but I didn't know how to break the cycle.

2. Being a procrastinator. I work best under pressure I told myself. I seemed to come up with my best ideas at the last moment. I often suffered from writer's block. I just had a hard time getting started on projects. Again I still got everything done but was it really my best work? How did this impact others? Was I then putting pressure on others because I waited to the last minute? Probably and that's not fair.

3. Being distracted. Where did I put my keys...umm oh yeah. See #1. I didn't realize I was losing track of time. I would go months without seeing people I said I cared about. The problem is that I never realized it. My health was suffering and I didn't realize it. Where is my metro card...umm oh yeah. See #2. Also being distracted was definitely tied into #2.

But really my fear was that I couldn't change. I started to see a long time ago that I needed to change but I couldn't because I didn't believe I could. So I made contingency plans around my weaknesses but that only served to enable my dysfunction. I am probably the only person who knows all the quiet places to go if you need to take a phone call while in the middle of a metro commute.

All of this stuff was getting in the way of my greatness. Things had gotten out of control at the end of 2013 and I was forced to change. I am sharing my journey so that I can help other people. So as I continue to build my foundation I will share what I am learning and doing to keep me moving forward and help others.

There you have it. It's all out on the table now.

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