Does anyone else ever get a sudden buzz where you feel really organised and on top of things, so you set yourself goals and objectives? And then that buzz wears off, and you’re just kind of stuck with a load of things you never achieved? And you just end up feeling rubbish and incapable? Yeah? No?
This post might as well be titled “A Year in the Life of Hannah”, because this has been my entire year summed up. With so many things going on and happening, I had numerous occasions where I would wake up and set myself goals to be achieved that day or week. Numerous list books purchased and filled out. And numerous nights spent crying over how badly I crashed mere hours later.
I’d like to say that it was the pressures of society, driving me to make myself the best at everything when it was impossible to be. I also often blamed it on how badly my mental health had gotten at the start of the year. But that all fizzled out, and I was still struggling. So what was the issue?
My issue was – and this might sound ridiculous and a little bit like an excuse to some of you – that I don’t work well when goals are set. I like to work at my own pace. I know where my achievements occur, and actually work really well when I’m left to it. But even to-do lists make me panic; they make me acutely aware of everything I have to do (which I know is their job, but more on that later) and they make me feel that by not getting to cross items off or put a big tick next to them, that I’m not doing well. And the whole thought puts me on a go-slow, or gets me so down that I can’t even bring myself to even try and accomplish the task, so a whole catch-22 situation occurs. Does anyone remember my 21 Goals at 21 post from last year? That legit gave me sleepless nights.
I’m trying to think of a way to illustrate this just in case my own explanation (read: ramble) doesn’t make any sense. You know when you were younger, and you’d think “hmm, I should tidy my room”? And you’d plan to tidy it and were more than willing to… and then your parents would tell you that you needed to tidy your room, and that was it. Ruined. You had no longer made the decision by yourself, and you were now being told to do it, so it wasn’t the same. Remember that? Like that.
I mentioned to-do lists. I love a list, as I’ve made clear on here previously. But I’ve begun to only use lists when I either need to remember something, or when I’m making a plan for coursework (hand-in dates, essay structures, yadda yadda yadda). I have ultimately banned myself from setting goals for myself, no matter how easy they may be. Because I know that knowing how easy they were supposed to be will just make me feel even worse if I don’t complete them.
I’d originally planned for this post to be a kind of advice thing, but all I’ve really done is natter on. I don’t even know what advice I’d have given!
But I’d genuinely love to know if anyone else feels the same with this sort of thing – or even if you don’t! And if you’ve managed to understand half of my descriptions and attempts to illustrate my point, then you’re a wee gem.