For years I tumbled through life, going at breakneck speed, trying to do at once all the things on my list that one must accomplish in the role of wife AND mother AND career woman, etc. etc…
I was always banging myself up in my frenzied movements from chore to chore, and never made the connection between my constant physical mishaps and the demanding, guilt-ridden, “get-‘er-done” fast paced lifestyle I was living… I did not recognize that what was truly driving me was the negative beliefs out of which I operated.
Friends, Advisors, and Family would encourage me to slow down, which, frankly, I took as praise for doing more for others, and the minimal for myself. I held fast to the idea that such self-abuse was necessary and wore it like a badge of honor: “See how much I destroy my own health and well-being for others!”
I did not know what the words, “slow down” could possibly mean – but the way I interpreted it was: “slow down, yeah, and then nothing will get done because I’m the only one that will do it … so I have no choice but to keep rushing pell-mell through life.” This is the trap of the Martyr/Rescuer who has to get hurt or sick in order to take a day off.
If you recognize yourself in these words, try this the next time you hear that driving inner voice demanding “more … more… faster …. faster …”
Say to yourself, “What I’m doing right now (including moments of SELF-care) is on my “to do” list too … so I think I will just do this right now, and I will give it my full attention … and then, when I’m finished with this, I will move on to do the next right thing on my list – the thing that most evidently needs doing in that moment.”
And if something interferes with my present task, demanding my attention elsewhere, I assess whether it is a more pressing task than the one I am presently doing … if so, I accept my new assignment, and turn my attention to it, saying the same words to myself, “This is on my list and must be taken care of and this is the moment it is to be done because here I am doing it, so I think I will give it my full attention … etc…
And don’t forget to B-R-E-A-T-H-E.
But only if you’re ready to give up victimhood! 🙂