More often than not I find my mind to be full of unnecessary clutter, including to-do lists on the weekends and overwhelming thoughts of where I’m supposed to be in my life, both breading stress, which then catapults into anxiety ridden thoughts, all of which are unhealthy. I generally try to keep my weekends to day trips, roaming the local neighborhood to discover something new and spending time with people I love. When my mind is overly cluttered, I can’t fully enjoy a relaxing experience, because bullying thoughts of what I should be doing better outweigh relaxation and enjoyment. Thankfully I’ve noticed my disruptive thought patterns and I’ve committed myself to changing them. I realized that I am way too hard on myself! If I could allow my mind to really take in and feel everyday life and it’s beauties, then ultimately I’ll be a happier person.
My professional career is in the sales industry, which requires an innate ability to be uber driven so that I meet my goals. Unfortunately, my mind has been so trained to make to-do-lists, because checking off a box feels good, that I’ve become overly regimented in my personal life. When the weekend rolls around, my mind continues on autopilot and the lists and the pushing don’t stop. Can you see how this takes the enjoyment out of what is supposed to be a relaxing day? If my plan falls apart, I start to get frustrated, when really I shouldn’t care if I get to my hike destination at 9 am instead of 8:30 am. I’m working on catching myself getting aggravated and reminding myself not to sweat the small stuff. Weekends should be about having fun, not expelling negative energy because things didn’t go as planned.
In addition to training my mind to dissolve stressful regimented thought patterns, I’m also trying to let go of ageist pressures I inflict upon myself dictating where I should be in my life and getting irritated that I am not there yet. My overall point here is that it’s all about balance when it comes to being driven. You may be thinking it’s good to push yourself, however, pushing yourself too hard can be destructive and can even create blockages. If you are over driven in every aspect of your life, and nagging thoughts become intrusive to your daily happiness, then you start missing out on simple pleasures. Life’s journey should be savored! Do you want to look back on your life and realize that you regret not feeling fulfilled? I certainly don’t! So here’s to going with the flow and not always being in the drivers seat. If you are feeling a bit like me, then let’s cheers to enjoying life while we are still young and free!
Young + Free/ May 24, 2016, © Jill E. Gallien