Have you ever gone to the beach and thought to yourself…”Hmmmmm this is a great place to dig a hole?” and you start to dig. At first it seems like a regular ole hole but then things start to change and you quickly realize that it’s not going to be as easy as you first thought it would be. Your new beach hole starts to collapse in on itself. Slowly but surely the top of sand trickles down into your new sand hole. One scoop out, sand pours back in. Another scoop out, more sand in. It’s at that point that you realize that what you thought would be so easy turns out to be much harder than you thought.
That’s what life feels like to me sometimes….like digging a hole in sand.
Why is that? Why do I feel like I can’t get ahead no matter how hard I try? Now, I’m not talking about money, no I’m talking about time. I’m talking about time as a whole and I’m talking about time as in no matter what I am doing I think I should be doing something else.
Let me fill you in a little better on what I’m trying to say here.
Recently I made a major (and I mean major) change in my life. I decided to quit my corporate job and become a full time social media influencer. Sounds great, right? That’s what I thought and in my head I thought this would the most “stress free” move of my life. In my head I visualized waking up in the mornings to a leisurely cup of coffee, wondering around the house while I decided what TikTok I would make, maybe work on some editing and write a blog of two. In my head I saw myself done at 5:00 to enjoy an evening of relaxation why I ponder my next day. In my head I saw myself successfully digging that hole in the sand.
What my day really looks like is nothing like what I thought it would look like. I’m up by 6:30 and I don’t stop working until I go to bed. Now please do not think for a moment that I am complaining about this because I’m not. I absolutely love my job, love my life and love my decision to quit. What I’m struggling with is the fact that no matter how much I do, I have more to do. What I thought was going to be easy is in fact very hard and the schedule I had given myself was unrealistic. What I am struggling with is time because I never seem to have enough of it. But wait, that’s not all, that would be way too easy. I also struggle with the feeling that no matter what I’m doing, I should be doing something else.
I’m not sure if you have ever felt this way, but I always feel like I should be doing something else. If I’m taking a break and relaxing for a moment, I tell myself I should be working. If I’m working I tell myself I should be relaxing. If I’m out thrifting for my Poshmark, I tell myself that I should be working on my YouTube. If I’m working on my YouTube I think it’s taking too long and should be writing a blog. No matter what I’m doing I feel like I should be doing something else. This way of thinking keeps me constantly digging in the sand because I’m never going to get to the bottom of that hole.
Now here’s where it gets interesting because I’m not sure if you noticed or not but I literally just wrote out the problem. It’s right here in black and white, everything that I feel. Now it’s up to me to come up with a solution. I really don’t want to spend the rest of my life telling myself I should have spent it doing something else.
I’ve thought about putting myself on a schedule before but I never followed through with it (at least I’m being truthful….right?) I would tell myself that as a creative person and creative people need to go with the flow. Schedules will do nothing but hinder my creativity and therefore schedules are not for me. We both know this is a load of crap and a schedule will help. I know it will help because I gave myself one. In the short time that I have been on a schedule, I have already seen an improvement. Now when I do a task, let’s say…..write my blog. I know this what I’m supposed to be doing and I don’t think about anything else. Yes, I have more to do but that is scheduled for once this is done. With this scheduleI I’ve been able to write more and stress less. As much as I hate to admit it, this free spirit has given herself a schedule.
Another super important part of this puzzle me is my inner voice. My inner voice is a mean little shrew who likes to make me feel bad no matter what I do and I know it. I know that sounds kinda mean, but I can be very mean to myself. My inner voice is the one who tells me that I should be doing something else no matter what I am doing. My inner voice is the one who tells me that I should work until I go to bed and my inner voice is the one who tells me that a schedule won’t work for me. So yes, I have to keep that inner voice under control and I do that by listening to it.
Now I know you are sitting there thinking to yourself “Why would you listen to what it is saying when it’s not being nice?” and the answer is “I’m listening to what it is saying so I can make sure to stop it once it gets mean.” If I don’t listen to what I’m telling myself it will just fill my head with silent negative thoughts and that is what I don’t want. I want my inner voice to tell me things I can do, positive things, anything but mean negative thoughts. Now if I catch my inner voice telling me that what I’m doing is wrong and I should be doing something else, I will stop and remind myself that I’m on a schedule and this is my scheduled time. With this system my inner shrew voice has no argument. I mean what’s it going to say? There is no arguing with the plain and simple fact that I’m on a schedule.
So if you find yourself digging your own hole in sand, just stop for a moment and ask yourself “why?”. Why are you doing this to yourself? And the more important question is what can you do to change this. What is your inner shrew voice telling you and can you make it stop. There is a solution to every problem and sometimes it’s as easy as telling your head shrew to “pipe down and shut up”. See if you need to give yourself more structure or in some cases less. I’m a big fan of journals and lists. Your writing doesn’t have to be fancy, it just needs to get out of your head and onto the paper. Once it’s there it’s easy for you to see your next step. No matter what changes you need to makes, just make sure you do it. You are important and your happiness is important.
Until next time….