I want to let you in on a little secret, well a big secret really; I have no idea what I'm doing, pretty much all of the time, whether it's to do with my business, my writing or my health. I'm making it up as I goI along and hoping it works out. I remember when I was a little girl that everyone else, especially adults, seemed to have all the answers; they knew exactly what you should be doing and how you should be doing it. I felt like I was living my life waiting for people to tell me what to do, what to say, how to act. Writing that sentence makes me feel exhausted! I truly believed, and in a way I'm realising I still do, that other people knew what was best for me and that I had to do what they told me.
Obviously this is a hugely important thing when you're a child, listening to adults makes sure that you live to become one yourself; but I think somewhere along the way we need to learn that nobody has all the answers, in fact very few people have any of the answers. All they know is what worked for them, that doesn't mean it would, could or should work for you.
I think we're all making things up as we go along; but we're bluffing, like everyone else, that we know exactly what we're doing. It seems like a huge crime to admit to the world that you don't know it all. Well guess what, I'm admitting it here, I have no idea what I'm doing. I don't know it all.
Take my ME/CFS, I'm doing the best I can with it, pacing myself and doing what feels good, resting, taking time to sleep during the afternoon, drinking lots of water etc etc. Am I doing all the right things? Is there something I'm allergic to? Should I be taking more supplements? Resting more? Exploring my childhood to see if there's some emotional trigger I need to release? I have no idea!
With Live in Love in Laugh in I'm listening to what other people say works and aiming to do my own version. I'm creating virtual events like my 1930's Vintage Party in your Pad and having fun making it an event I want to virtually go to; but is it the right way? Should I be doing more, less, something different? I have no idea!
I'm meeting new friends, trying new things and hoping that I'm moving towards long held hopes and dreams. Am I doing it the way I should be? I have no idea!
The thing I've realised is that it doesn't matter. It doesn't matter what people think you should do, or what society thinks you should do, or even what you think you should do - you have to follow your heart and do what's right for you. What feels good, that makes you feel like you can breathe, like your heart is expanding and everything just feels better.
That doesn't change the fact that I still have no idea what I'm doing, pretty much all the time. I haven't got a clue if it's going to work out the way I want it to, or if it's taking me off in a completely different direction. The important thing is that we all feel like this, or at least that's what I think; leave me a comment if you do know what you're doing, because I would love to know your secret!
I think the world would be a much better place and we would all feel so much less pressure if we just acknowledged that none of us know what we're doing, that's just life. The fun part is just letting go and seeing what happens, trusting that everything will be okay, it will work out, and you just have to go with it.
What do you think? I'd love to get your perspective on it.
P.S. This post didn't feel finished, I felt like I needed to add some positive little conclusion and then I realised I was just trying to pretend I really do know what I'm doing. Mental head slap!
Image courtesy of Jeroen van Oostrom / FreeDigitalPhotos.net
Coping with "Big" Birthdays when you're ill or disabled. Turning 18, 21, 30, 40, 50... Things to be proud of.
There's no denying it, no getting away from it. At the end of the month I'm turning 30. The statement makes my heart sink and is accompanied with a sense of dread, a sickening at all that hasn't been and what may lie ahead. It's stupid really; things don't magically change because the clock strikes midnight at the end of one day and a new one begins. I'll still be me; I'll still be the same person. Not that much has changed, or has it?
I think the real reason that "big" birthdays have such an impact on us is because it's like a pumped up version of New Year's Eve, a time to look back and reflect on the lives we have, the things we've done and more importantly the things we haven't done. The saying's true, there's very little I regret doing; but there is a lot of things I wished I'd done. So many that I still want to do; but right now just feel impossible.
I think that sense of the impossible is made worse when it's illness or disability that's kept you from your dreams, an outside force that has taken over your life and changed who you are and who you wanted to become.
We all have this mental check list, these things we want to do or think we "should" do by a certain age and as with New Year's Eve, we run through the list to see how we're doing. In my case it's a success/failure situation, which is far too black and white in reality; but it's hard not to do.
And so it goes on... everything I want, everything I think I want, everything I think I should: have, done or been by the age of 30 equated to a simple yes or no answer. Is it fair? No. Is it true? Yes; but only in the narrowest form possible. Where's the checklist for all the other things, the things that aren't considered milestones by society; but are huge when you're living with them.
They are all great; but they're also just achievements the things I've done; but what about the bigger things, the emotional stuff. The things that have really defined who I am as a person, that have made me stronger.
When I think of life in those terms, when I redefine what is important, what matters, what makes up a "life" I see the past thirty years as pretty epic, all the things I've been though, all the experiences - both good and bad - the ways I've changed and grown, how I've come into the person I am, it gives me a new sense of respect for myself and for everyone else who's been through similar situations.
Maybe now's the time for us to start redefining what it is to live, what achievements should be counted as worthwhile, so that when we reach the big birthdays, or any birthdays for that matter we do so with joy and with awe at all we have coped with and respect and wonder at how pretty darn awesome each of us is!
What would you put on your list of amazing things that you can be proud to check off at your next "big" birthday? Let me know.
This morning I was feeling a bit blur, not sure what to do, really wanting to just curl up away from the grey day and read which I very well might do; but I knew I'd get frustrated if I hadn't achieved something today.
I suddenly remembered that music always makes me feel much better, so I decided to put my Most Played List on and enjoy some of my favourite tracks. I can already feel the tight, achy feeling in my chest lifting and I feel like I can breathe again.
I thought I'd share some of those tracks with you in case your mood needed lifting too.
Music to lift my mood, with some of my favourite songs. ♫ Instant Uplift http://t.co/W46crnpC8F #Spotify
What songs do you listen to to make you feel better?
I won the Good Housekeeping Novel Competition. My novel, The Choice, is published on 26th December 2019, by Orion
Amazon, Waterstones, Book Depository
Title: The Choice
Published: 26th December 2019
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