I have talked about this a lot lately, about having habits that I desperately need to change. I drink too much, I am far too negative, I allow myself to get trapped in holes of depression for too long, I fail to keep to a more productive schedule, I blow off stream far too often, I don’t finish projects. The list could go on, but you get the point.
I’ve made steps to better that. I have started making a better routine for myself that will allow me the time needed to succeed at the things I need to. I’ve set goals for myself. Goals dealing with streaming, with getting healthy, with my writing. I’ve tried to do more to help my mental health. To cut back on self-medicating, and taking on projects that make me feel better.
The problem is a lot of things require rather large changes. Changes in what I consume. Changes in when I work vs when I take time for myself. Changes that range from easy to make to down right hard, either physically or mentally (or both). I think we all, to some degree, can acknowledge that when you are making major changes that are going to be times that you slip up. It’s hard to go from drinking a lot of caffeine every day to next to none. It’s hard to cut the glasses of wine from your nightly routine. It’s hard to get back on a writing schedule when you’ve been blowing it off for so long. It takes time, and most importantly it takes mistakes.
My problem is I don’t know how to “mess up small”. I overreact, I flip out, I get down on myself, and then I start a negative cycle.
I wanted to get back to streaming, but then I had internet problems which made me miss streams, which got me down, which made me unfocused with writing, which made me want to drink as a crutch to write again, which made me feel awful about drinking during the week even though I said I wouldn’t, which made me eat not healthy stuff, which made me feel worse, which made me waste a day inself-pity and anger, which made it even worse, which… well, you get it.
Before I knew it a week was wasted with my only having done about half the work I wanted to. Even now though I can’t acknowledge that I did do better in many ways, and I especially couldn’t acknowledge it during the week as I watched my efforts slip more and more away from me.
I don’t know how to mess up small.
I don’t know how to face a small roadblock and keep going. Every time I see one I just make it so much worse for myself. I turn every hiccup up, every stumble, into a major event that completely throws me off of everything. Yes, it sucks that I am having issues getting back to streaming after taking so long off, but I can’t control that my net wasn’t working. I also know that it will take me awhile to make it part of my normal routine again. I missed many days that I didn’t need to because I was so upset about the few days I couldn’t control. Yes, it sucks that I am struggling to get back into writing. It’s going to take time however. Much like with streaming I was so focused on what I failed to do that I never gave myself a chance to do better. Yes, it’s going to be hard to lose weight, and there will be days that I will cave and eat something that I shouldn’t. But the whole week doesn’t have to be a loss. Not only that but with time it will be easier to avoid those days.
I know this. I know that I can tell myself that it’s ok and keep going. I hear it in my head. The voice that’s so quiet but constantly saying, “stop doing this to yourself you only make it worse”… but I never seem able to listen to it.
I don’t pat myself on the back for the fact that despite messing up a few days, I did lose weight. I don’t acknowledge that even though it was just a little writing, I did write. I didn’t say good job for getting a blog schedule that I can clearly keep. I didn’t acknowledge the work I did on other projects. I just let myself focus on the failures and then dug myself in so that I made more…
I don’t know how to mess up small.
I am doing it again today (Tuesday). I was going to kick off a normal week of streaming, but then I messed up. It’s not something I am willing to share, but it is something that caused more stress for Ben and I. So I got so focused and in my head that I was unable to stream because I was so down. I ate an unhealthy lunch, and now feel like crap about that. I’m starting to spiral, and it’s only Tuesday. This has got to stop.
I can stream tomorrow. I can spend the rest of the day working on my writing. I can eat better for the rest of the week. I can keep not drinking during the week. I can keep working on my yard and helping it grow. I can work on projects around the house. I can still have a great week. I don’t need to keep digging myself further into a hole and wasting yet another week of my life.
I can learn how to mess up small. I have to.