Doing What You Don’t Want To Do

One of the consequences of growing up and becoming an adult is that you will need to force yourself to do a lot of things you would otherwise not want to do. Before, it was your parents’ responsibility to do a lot of that for you, or at least push you to do it. But, as we get older and more of these challenges come our way, we tend to find ways to run and hide from those responsibilities – at least, I do.

I am not one to step out of my comfort zone, and if there is something I need to do and cannot predetermine how exactly it will pan out, then I am jumping straight into overthinking mode. I will essentially create a dozen different scenarios that all end in the worst thing imaginable; I will scare myself so much all because I don’t want to take care of certain responsibilities. Does this all sound familiar or a little bit crazy?

It is a bit crazy and quite exhausting actually. The more time I spend freaking out about something, the less I want to do it, the scarier it becomes and the more I freak out. Truth be told, my brain often finds itself trapped in this vicious loop. But unfortunately, there are many times where I still have to do the thing I don’t want to or take care of a certain responsibility I would rather avoid for the rest of my life.

So, how do I do it? Here a few reminders I pull out whenever I am consumed with paralyzing anxiety over doing something I do not want to do.

1.       Ground Yourself in The Present Moment

It is so easy to get lost in our heads that we forget what is happening in the world outside of our heads. When you feel yourself getting anxious, take a few deep breaths and focus on just being in the moment. Tell your brain and those negative thoughts that you are here right now, not anywhere else. Often, we stress or get anxious about things that will happen in the future, I find that reminding myself to be in the present gives my brain a bit of breathing room and eases my anxiety a little.

2.       It Will Be Over, Eventually

The passage of time can sometimes be a blessing. Remember that what you are feeling right now, what you think will happen when you do the thing you don’t want to do, and time, in general, will pass. Even if it goes horribly, it will eventually pass, and time will keep moving. Everything eventually comes to an end.

3.       Prepare as Much as You Can

When I am about to enter a situation where I don’t know what will happen, there is only one thing I can control and sometimes figuring that out helps calm my nerves. If you are scared of not being in control of a situation (we can’t always be in control of everything), then remember what you can do. Can you do some more research to prepare? Can you plan something out that would make this easier? Is there a reward you can give yourself at the end of this task or a responsibility that will make you feel better? Trying to prepare for what is to come can help you feel more grounded, present and less insecure about yourself in the future moment you are doing the thing you don’t want to do.

There are a lot of things I hate doing, but there are just some things I cannot avoid doing – no matter how much I try. Take a deep breath, get out of your head, plan what you can and remember it will be over before you know it. Good luck!

Why Am I Scared Of Growing Up?

As a kid, I had high hopes and expectations for adulthood. I was the one kid going on and on about wanting to grow up and how it would be so freeing and liberating. In some ways, it has been, but in other ways, it has been a tumultuous roller-coaster filled with so many highs and lows I can’t keep up anymore.

For some reason, the older I get, the more terrified I am to grow up. Not necessarily physically age, but of just taking on more responsibility and having to make harder decisions. But why is that? Why am I scared of responsibility and life-altering decisions?

As I was pacing around my room last night it dawned on me that I was scared of growing up because I had convinced myself that every decision, I would make at 22 years old would be permanent. Somehow, I had told myself that any decision I would make right now is what my life would be, and there would be no wiggle room to change in my future.

Which after some reflection, I find a bit ridiculous? Why do we think that most of our decisions are so permanent when everything around us, including ourselves, is constantly changing? Society has conditioned us to think that the box or category we fall into at the age of 20-something is the same one we will be in when we are in our 30s or 50s. But that could not be further from the truth. First off, you are never constrained to a box or category. Second, you are allowed to change and grow, and the decisions you make now can also change and grow with you.

This idea that I would be constrained by the decisions I made as a 20-something year old for the rest of my life is terrifying. But that idea is simply not true.

The decisions you make at this point in your life are not always permanent. Yes, some things are permanent such as having children or taking care of an elderly family member. But there are so many other factors of your life that can change and grow with you as you change if you let them. If I have learned one thing, it is that nothing is permanent. Nothing is guaranteed, and everything is subject to change. Understanding this has eased my anxiety that was so intertwined with growing up and all that it entails.

Take comfort in the fact that growing up does not necessarily mean making one big decision after another and never having the ability to change it. You will always be making life-altering decisions, but that does not mean you can’t change your mind.

There will always be that opportunity to change direction, to try something new, to grow.