Give Yourself an Effing Break

 

I’m hearing over and over again in therapy sessions right now… 

 

“I’m doing all the ‘right’ things but I’m still not feeling very good. What am I doing wrong?”

 

And then just last weekend (after riding the same roller-coaster in life that we all have been on), I found myself wanting to curl up in a ball, hide under the covers, and have a good cry.

 

I was thinking the same thing I have been hearing from my clients, “What am I doing wrong?” 

 

I’m working out every day. I’m getting outside. I’m setting healthy boundaries with work. I’m going to bed at a decent hour and I’m doing my best to limit doom scrolling on my phone.

 

And most importantly, I’m still prioritizing connection with others the best that I can. I have my short list of special people turn to I can when I’m feeling down. They are going through it all, too, but they help me feel less alone and validated in my feelings.

 

But here I still am, under the covers, with a migraine, thoughts swimming and tears in my eyes.

 

Why?

 

Well, because I’m having a completely normal reaction to the compounding state of the ongoing pandemic; the terrorism at the Capitol in early January, the increase in vocal and violent white supremacists; nearly a year of isolation unlike anything any of us have experienced. 

 

And we are burned out, scared, and guarded against hope

 

Through no fault of our own.

 

And, so…I’m whispering something to myself, words I hope you can hear too, 

 

“You are doing a damn good job. You aren’t doing anything wrong. Your feelings of grief, fear, sadness, helplessness. They are normal. This sucks (it really does). And like with all things, we will get through it.”

 

So, I’m not here to give you a “feel better in 5 easy steps list.” No, that would be disingenuous, but what I can do is remind you that even when we feel helpless and scared I can continue to focus on what we can do and be present in whatever moments of hope we can find.

 

So yes, I’m still hopping on my cycling bike for a good sweat, journaling, talking to loved ones, getting outside, setting boundaries and all the good self care things.

 

And I’m also:

 

-Reminding myself that my feelings are normal and actually are proof that I’m not living in denial of the realities in the world.

-Taking action where I can by keeping my family as safe as I can; confronting racism, hate, and abuse in my own interactions with others; donating time and money to causes and people I believe in.

Doing my best to live in the moment with my daughter through giggles and play and dancing even when I’m more exhausted than I knew possible.

-Showing up for others emotionally so that I can feel less helpless.

-Giving myself an effing break – it’s okay to feel stuck in so many ways right now.

 

Now, tell me… Do you relate to any of this? What are you doing to get through?

Hi! I'm Megan Negendank, founder and executive director of Love Heal Grow Counseling.

I help hurting, worried couples & individuals heal from pain and create thriving lives & relationships. 

You can read more about me or schedule an appointment here: About Megan