Recently I’ve been stressed.
About money, about organising my life, my work, fitting everything in without compromising on something. Too often it’s my health and wellbeing that is last on the list. And I’ve realised that sometimes you have to practise at caring for yourself, sometimes it doesn’t come naturally because you feel there are ‘bigger things’ to worry about…and yet good mental and physical health are the most important things to nurture in order to live a happy life!
Going freelance full-time has been amazing in so many ways, but the unfortunate reality is that it takes a bit of time to build a client base that can not only support you financially to cover your rent, bills and costs, but also allow you to live comfortably.
To give myself credit, I only need a few more clients and I’ll be in that ‘comfortable’ margin, but it’s easy to fall into old patterns of thinking:
“I don’t work hard enough.”
“I could do better.”
“I’m only holding things together by a thread.”
There’s also a bit of ‘Imposter Syndrome’ going on up there:
“They’ll find out that I’m not really very good.”
“Can I keep the pretence up that I’ve got it together.”
“How can I call myself a professional – I’m too young.”
These kind of thoughts can manifest in perfectionists and self-criticisers. As you constantly strive for those unattainable goals and that ‘perfect’ lifestyle, you miss or are blinded to your real achievements – your ability to live independently, your satisfied clients, your proud partner or parents, the respect and love from peers and friends.
So this morning I was lying in bed, phone in hand, scrolling my life away. Trying to distract myself from those thoughts and the sinking dread that I was slowly slipping back to an internal place I’ve been before and desperately never want to revisit.
I didn’t feel like doing yoga.
I wasn’t inspired to make a smoothie.
But I suddenly realised that I could still force myself to do these things, because they will still be good for me. Even if I’ve lost sight of why.
So I did.
And I loved it.
And I felt inspired.
I created some smoothie art (which I haven’t done in weeks).
I followed my own yoga practise to best suit my needs (instead of just following a video).
And then I felt inspired to share this all with you, because it’s often only when I tell others how I’m feeling, that I really acknowledge it myself (that’s also why I write songs!). And if one other person forces themselves to do something they know is good for their mental or physical health today, no matter how badly they don’t want to do it and feel it won’t make any difference, and find that actually it does…then this post was doubly worth it!
N.B. If you’re thinking ‘I don’t want to have to force myself, tell me how I can make myself want to do these things’…I’m afraid from my experience, the wanting comes later – after you’ve done something which makes you feel good enough times, eventually you override your ‘I can’t be bothered’ thoughts automatically, because you know you’ll enjoy it as soon as you start! My mum is a perfect example; I’ve heard her flop on the sofa after a long day and work and go “oh I’m completely knackered”…and then an hour later be putting on fancy dresses and heels to go off to dance the tango, which she does for fun most days of the week! When I ask her how she does it, she always replies – “Oh I know I’ll perk up as soon as I start dancing, I and I always feel better for it after”. She really is an inspiration!
So just take a deep breath when you’re feeling like you ‘can’t’ do something. Breathe in love, and breathe it back out to the world.
The more you love and are happy within yourself, the more love and happiness you are able to share with the world and those around you, the more love and happiness you will receive.
Circle of life.
Circle of love.
It starts with you.