Why do I....

Why do I doubt myself even though I have accomplished so much?

I worry unnecessarily. I worry that I won't be liked, won't be accepted or won't be offered a position. I worry about outcomes of  hypothetical situations that probably will never occur. Worst of all, I worry that I am going to fail.

But then I remind myself that worry stems from fear, and fear comes from mistakenly identifying myself with my mind, specifically my ego. I remind myself that the ego uses past experiences to make predictions about the future, which means that worry and fear cannot exist if  I am living in the present moment. If I am focused on right here, right now it is literally impossible to be worried because being present means I am not interested in the outcome of what I am doing, whether it be good or bad. 

 

Why do I feel lazy even when I am being productive?

I have an odd sort of work ethic. My inspiration comes in spurts. It's either all there or it's no where to be found. When it's there I work for hours on end, most times without even pausing to eat or use the bathroom. But then there are days when I am not inspired, and it is difficult for me to focus for more than a few minutes at a time. I shame myself and feel guilty for being "lazy". I get stuck inside my own head only to realize at the end of the day that I actually WAS productive. I've just become so used to my bursts of feverish, laser-focused attention that anything less than that feels like inactivity in comparison. If my schedule isn't uncomfortably jam-packed with tasks to complete and places to go I feel lost.

But then I remind myself that it is okay to slow down, that some tasks are done better when you are calm and centered. I remind myself that taking care of my body and respecting my health is just as important and productive as sending out e-mails, running errands, or cleaning the house.

 

Why do I automatically compare myself to others?

I am happy with my life and am grateful for everything and everyone in it...but yet I still  compare myself to others usually without even realizing it. It happens automatically. They aren't positive comparisons, either. It's not that I am comparing what's better about me than someone else; it's the opposite. The ego takes over and tries to convince me that someone else is more attractive, smarter, more successful, and more well-liked than I am. What purpose does this serve? Why does my mind do this even when consciously I know that it isn't positively contributing to my health?

But then I remind myself that thought patterns are a type of habit...a habit that I can control with practice and patience. I remind myself that I don't have to live a life compared to anyone else's, and that just being aware of these thought patterns when they show up is progress. I don't have to live a life of comparison, feeling confined by what others look like or have in their possession. I am unique, and we are all having our own unique experiences.

 

Why do I feel sad when everything is going well?

I feel happy most of the time. I feel sad or upset when something happens to cause it, something that I can pin-point and am able to tell you what it is if you asked. But then there are other times when I am sad even on what I would consider a "good" day. I feel tired, down, and anxious for no apparent reason. I can't figure out what's going on, and the emotion that comes next is guilt, quickly followed by anger. Why should I feel sad? I have a home to live in, clean clothes to wear, fresh water to drink, and I have enough money to buy the things I need to live comfortably. These are luxuries millions of people simply just do not have. I don't deserve to feel sad, especially when nothing is noticeably "wrong". I get angry at myself for it, and that ties back into me feeling lazy.

But then I remind myself that I don't have to feel sad, nor do I have to dwell on it when I do. I remind myself that my emotions affect me only as much as I allow them to. I am not controlled by them, and I understand that my true Self exists beyond the emotions that are created in my mind. This empowers me. I recognize an emotion for what it is, and in doing so can detach myself from it. I can accept whatever emotion comes up without judging it.

 

Why do I treat others with more kindness than I treat myself?

I keep my commitments with others. I am honest. I try my best to be a good listener. I am always willing to help. I am conscious of my tone of voice and the words I use and attempt to be calm and friendly even when that demeanor is not being reciprocated. So why do I insult myself? Why do I fall short on my commitments that I make with myself? And why do I feel like I honestly care more about other people than I do about myself? I feel selfish if I spend time and money on myself, and I feel happy when I can make others happy. 

But then I remind myself that in order to truly be kind and of service to others I must first be kind and take care of myself. In order to trust others I must first learn to trust myself. And to truly feel peace of mind I must first love myself enough to know when I am being unkind to my body and mind. I remind myself that if I am not healthy and strong my ability to help others will not be strong either. It is okay for me to spend time on myself, to make myself feel happy.

 

 

I have fears. I have flaws. I am human. 

I have courage. I have strengths. I am Me.