Recent events made me think what is it that makes us tick, or at least me. Is it warm weather and sunny days, is it appreciation at work, is it a happy relationship, what is it?
Recently I had to take some time off from work. Actually, it was mindblowing as I never in a million years thought that I would be one of them who would get so stressed at work and need sick leave. In hindsight, it might have been one of the best things that happened to me.
The time off allowed me to realise how slowly the symptoms of fatigue and stress crept into me, gnawing into my self esteem and my professional self, causing me to question even my worth as a nurse. There were actual days that I questioned myself so badly I almost had to check that I actually have my diploma. The thing I am not happy about was that I waited for so long before reaching out for help.
For instance, had I not realised I would need a break and sick leave, I would not probably have started blogging again, or writing. These small things that have brought me joy, were kind of left behind. At one point, I realise it now, I closed down my previous blog because I felt I wasn’t good enough. And for me to think that was about something I cherish, is telling me a lot. And at the time I didn’t even realise how tired, how burnt out I was.
But now, after reaching out for help, I have had to re-evaluate my priorities a little bit. And that has led me into self reflection about my wants and needs. And it is something I dearly recommend to everyone.
We have one life to be happy. Instead, many of us spend it feeling miserable because of the conditions in our lives or the surroundings. But why?
Yes, bills have to be paid, and one needs money for food, and all that – but is a toxic workplace worth losing your health for? Will your employer come and tell you that you are indispensable and they will, as a compensation, offer you less hours with better pay just because they are so good and kind-hearted? If so, can I apply today?
If your relatives don’t accept you for who you are, instead passing snide remarks about your significant other every time you meet them… Is it really worth having them in your life? It may seem harsh, but your mental health will thank you for doing that.
I was once told that I was much nicer person when I didn’t have opinions. Might be true, well at least I had so-called friends back then who hung out with me when they wanted to. Not necessarily when I wanted to. Guess what happened to that person, who said that comment to me? Guessed right, he got blocked.
So What Can I Do?
What I did now when I had a break was simple. I sat down with a big mug of coffee one day and stared outside. I tried to look into my life at the moment and what brought me joy and happiness, and what felt like bringing me down.
If you do that, try not to dwell on the negatives. Try countering them with the good ones, as it helps your mind to stay analytical without getting emotional. And whatever you do, don’t turn your attention to anything else. This usually happens when we are faced with tasks we don’t want to complete, so we try to find something else to fill our time with: have to read for an exam, so hoovering is so much more fun, or have to fill the laundry, but all of a sudden organising the photos from your last trip needs to done right now. Sound familiar?
I did come up with a list. Some items on the list are bigger than the others and trust me, the list isn’t all black and white. And I am working with the list at the moment, and have since realised things like how time consuming making blog posts actually is, and how much more time it takes to advertise your blog posts! I might need an assistant!
Start small. Change the little things at first, especially if you have had a longer period when things haven’t gone your way. I recommend this so that your energy picks up momentum and starts to push you onwards. If you tackle the most major hurdle on your list first, it can take lots of energy to succeed. I’m not saying it’s wrong, and if you do it – good for you!
I believe that we owe it to ourselves to be happy and content with our lives. And one way to be that is to safeguard those things that bring us joy, and if we start to notice that we don’t have time and energy to do those things, then there is something wrong. And that wrong needs to be rectified.
Let’s go and be happy, shall we?