What if the New Year, New You posts are freaking you out? My social media feeds are full of inspirational quotes to be healthier, happier, skinner, richer, to live a calmer, less stressful life. Laugh more, love more, just be more….
I started my January blues in December this year so I’m in full swing already. The worst thing is I have no reason to have the blues. I have a lovely family, brilliant friends, a job that I love, a roof over my head, I’m not well off by any stretch but I’m not destitute either, so why do I feel so down?
Work? Could be. I was lucky enough to quit my job and turn my hobby into a business. Running two businesses from home is a dream for some and I do genuinely love my job, but it is in equal measure really, really stressful. No steady household income, having to be a business partner, account handler, networker, accountant, cleaner, receptionist and everything else aswell as doing the job that I’m actually good at and enjoy. I never switch off and relax.
Family? I love my little family but it’s not always easy, never believe all the posts on Facebook of the perfect life, the most wonderful families… no ones life is perfect, it’s not healthy. So for all the things I love about my family, we argue, we disagree, but we are always there and we have each other. I’d always wanted a bigger family but as it’s turned out there’s just the 3 of us and as perfect as that is for us, I can’t help the envy those with more. The grass is always greener.
I don’t spend enough time with my parents and sister either, everyone seems to be so busy that we can’t seem to fit in time for each other and that freaks me out. Time isn’t slowing down and I worry that one day we’ll regret it, but how do I change that?
Friends? I have different pockets of friends for different things in life. I have old friends, old work friends, new work friends and friends who I met through my son. They all seem to be holding it together so well, how do they have a clean house as well as work and social life, how do they fit it all in? All help me out, all make me laugh, but I don’t really know how to share my feelings, I do like to bottle things up, and let my problems fester, that’s ok right? I’m pretty sure it’s not right but not sure how I change that either.
Health? I’m in my forties and I know I need to be healthier and fitter and look after myself more. I currently have a bad back and thought it was just my body starting to fail me, I thought aches and pains were part of getting older. Thankfully a physio told me I have a problem in my back and it can be fixed. If only I could get round to doing to the exercises…
I’ve heard myself telling others they need to make time to exercise, make time for themselves, make time for others… but seriously, how do you do that?? Running two businesses, running a family, running a house, looking after me, maintaining friendships. All need working at and I’ve no idea how to make them all work at the same time.
Everything about my life needs decluttering, I know what I need to do, I need to exercise, get some fresh air, go for more walks, read a book, laugh with friends, go to the beach, but what if I find it hard to find time for any of those things? It’s a vicious circle that I’m stuck in.
December should have been brilliant, the excitement of Christmas through my son’s eyes, the lovely festive events my friends organised, spending time with family, but honestly I just found it all really hard. The pressure of spending money, having fun and keeping smiling was for me just really difficult. I didn’t feel up to socialising, smiling or celebrating, so instead of sharing my worries, I probably came across as just plain miserable.
Is it stress? Probably. Is it depression? I’ve never suffered but maybe this is what it feels like.
Do I just need to man up and sort myself out? More than likely.
This isn’t a cry for help, I never ask for help. It’s my kryptonite. Asking for help is admitting defeat and no matter what anyone tells me I’ll never ask for help. Yes I know this is wrong but I doubt it will ever change.
There’s nothing worse for me than getting advice from those who seem to have all the things I don’t. When I was on maternity leave I found comfort in others going through the same thing at the same time. That helped. Maybe everyone else is going through the same now but maybe we’re all the same and bottle it all up, believing everyone else has the perfect life, the perfect family, the perfect job…
So I have a choice, I can pull myself together and sort myself out in a truly British fashion, or I can curl up and hide. Writing this has felt like therapy, so I think I know how it’s going to go, but first I’m going to have a cuppa and hide on the sofa for a little while.
A big virtual hug for everyone else struggling with their perfectly normal life right now.