2014-02 Drop Caring What Others Think (1)/Add Daily Creative Writing

I’ve had a few “add” ideas this month, but a drought of “drop” inspiration. In usual Zaiene fashion, I’ve suddenly come up with a flurry of ideas for things in my life to drop! So, once more you find me here in Lifestyle Experiment Land. I’ve been considering expanding things regularly to a fortnight or a month, but, as my first for the year, I will start with a week and see how things go. This whole Life thing is pretty much trial and error, you know.

This week, I am going to drop caring what other people think (1). Yep, just like that. Ok, so moving on…

No, no, I’m not silly enough to really think it’s that simple, or I would have achieved this years ago and been a thouroughlly happier and more obnoxious person! If I manage to keep DO/AO up (at least semi-regularly) this year, I’m planning to revisit this particular one a few times, so this has the (1) next to it as it is my first step!

Obviously, I’m not planning to stop caring about other people’s feelings or considering other people. I don’t think I could ever be truly arrogant (although probably a teeny bit of arrogance would actually be good for me). What I’d like is to spend less time checking my own behaviour and worrying what other people are thinking of me. I’d like to spend less time reviewing interactions and worrying that the other person didn’t find them as positive as I did. I’d like to spend less time worrying that someone is unhappy with my work or performance or behaviour, even though nothing negative has been said or indicated.

I’ve decided that the easiest way to start might be with the people that already supposedly really like me. No, I’ll say that again: …The people who already really like me. This week, I’m going to try not to worry about what my friends are thinking of me. They already like me, generally think positive things about me and don’t mind (and even enjoy) my normal behaviour. These are people who actually say to me things like “I miss you!” or “Let’s catch up!” or “I had fun today!” or “I love it when we hang out!” and other nice, personally-complimentary things. Despite lovely comments like these, I often find myself wondering if I was being too annoying or if they really like me as much as I thought, or if they were judging me in some way etc. So, this week I will try to check those thoughts and just enjoy spending time with friends or communicating with friends; I will try to relax and be myself and let my friends think whatever it is they always think without trying to guess and worry about it.

This week, more practically, I’m going to add daily creative writing.

I’ve been having a bit of a hiatus from work recently, as one of my jobs has finished and I have felt that I needed some time to try to work my health and wellbeing back up from about 30% to something more sustainable (it’s probably up to about 65-70% now). I’ve eventually got to the stage, however, where “resting” is driving me insane. I’m feeling a little aimless at home, but don’t quite have the energy to constantly be out and about; I still need to make sure I’m taking time to nurse and nurture myself. I will very soon feel ready pick up some teaching or find some new work, but in the meantime I just don’t really like this feeling of not working or studying (uni starts in two weeks) or doing anything that is purposeful for my Life.

It suddenly struck me that normally I long for periods when I have nothing to do except work on my creative projects. In a really ideal world, I would probably work a few days a week in some kind of helping job (for instance, psychology or education) and the rest of my time I would write stories and blog and do other creative things. Normally, though, I expend so much mental energy on work and study that I give up trying to have any left over for a sustained creative writing effort. Recent issues with my eyes and migraines don’t help much, either. Yet, here I’ve been, sitting around feeling dissatisfied and bored, when I could have been making the most of precious obligation-free time!

Sometimes I’m baffled at how long it takes me to realise things like this!!

So, my goal this week is to do at least fifteen minutes of any kind of creative writing each day. More is great, of course, but at least fifteen minutes (or five minutes + ten minutes, or any other combination) will mean I’ve sat down and started to get back into the swing of things.

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About Zaiene

In the hustle and bustle of everyday life I am inspired by so many different ideals of how to live a happy, fulfilled and productive life but struggle to get around to it. Large scale changes are intimidating and difficult to sustain, so this is my bite-sized life experiment. Each week*, I will find one thing in my life to drop and one thing to add. I will try to drop things that have a negative, unhealthy or over-absorbing effect on my life. I will try to add things that will have a positive, healthy, empowering or useful effect on my life. The experiment is to see whether I can cope with these changes and whether they really do improve my life. *(I began it as each weekend, as a less intimidating challenge. After about ten months, I felt that I wanted whole-week - well, Monday-to-Friday - challenges.)
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