Posts Tagged With: personal motivation

feeling the appropriate amount of drama

Apparently my wish is PWCS command. I got the text that schools were closed last night just before 9:00.
We have a snow day!
But it’s dry as a bone outside…the southern part of VA got pounded, even the southern part of the county.
Who cares! I’m home today!
Gotta make the most of it.

**warning**
Buckle up kiddies, we’re going on one hell of a stream of consciousness ride today.
For your own safety, and peace of mind, please keep your hands and feet inside the vehicle at all times.

I wrote this on Friday:

It feels like I waste so much time.
I am truly astonished at how much time I actually waste each day.
I’m not sure what that’s about.
I don’t have it in me to write.
I don’t pick up things to read.
I am not depressed.
I am not having issues with my brain.
I’m just in this weird cycle of pressuring myself to work and not actually getting any thing done.
Will put some time at considering how I might break the cycle.

I wrote these words this morning:

I’m a bit worried. I can feel myself being really anxious and there’s not a logical reason for it.
I’m not doing anything I’m meant to be doing except go to work and do my job. I’m barely feeding myself. I’m not writing or reading. I’m not doing homework.
I’m avoiding things I normally enjoy.
The more I write, the more these things are describing depression.
I don’t feel depressed!
Unless…
These are signs of what’s to come…? These are my warning signs…?

I’m not sure how to shake myself loose!
It’s easy to say, “just do it” (fuck you, Nike) but it doesn’t work that way.

I have to write six lesson plans and I literally cannot even open the rubric to see what needs to be done.
I need to watch classroom videos and can’t stand the sight or sounds of children long enough to record my observations.
I have a stack of books in my TBR shelf and I don’t even want to touch them!
And the thing that kind of frightens me the most…I’m not all SQUEEEEEE!! about wrapping gifts.

On this gift of a snow day I’ve already started the laundry and plan to wrap gifts.
And if there’s time before my massage appointment, I’ll do some homework.
I may attempt to turn part of this into a blog post, but maybe not till Wed…?
Of course, I started one Sunday last week when we came home from the play…I lost my momentum and thought process because I didn’t make the time to go back to it until yesterday.

I think those words are key: make the time

I’m not making the time to do anything!
I’m literally just wasting the days away.
Of course, I’m tired after school. And this family schedule is…tricky to say the least. But I’m not sure I’m actually forcing myself to do what needs to be done.
Just the words ‘forcing myself’ speak volumes.

I am overwhelmed.
I’m not sure what that’s about really.
Is it conceptual overwhelm-edness? Am I just so caught up in what needs to be done and what I’m not actually doing that it’s stressing me out?
I do feel overwhelmed.
Anxious.
Like I’m just waiting for the other shoe to drop.
But I need to sort it so I don’t go down the rabbit hole! Especially at this time of year!

Perhaps building a quick schedule. Moderate my time?
Also create a looking forward to thingie, some kind of list maybe?
So I’ll do what I’m meant to be doing and then I’ll be excited with what I’m looking forward to…that could inspire me to get it together with a quickness…?

I can hear my mother in my head, ‘put your nose to the grindstone and work’ ‘pull yourself up by your bootstraps’ ‘stop being so dramatic’
Is it that easy?
Can I just buck up and power through?

It’s not just my stuff that makes me anxious.
I’m anxious around the house.
I’m anxious around my husband.
I’m avoiding the kid so as not to be anxious around him. I was saying this to YBW and he mused that perhaps that’s why the kid never leaves his room when he’s home.
That was more responsibility than I’m interested in taking on. I was just talking about how tricky it is to want to help him and also let him do his own thing. How that induces anxiety in me. Is what I’m feeling causing actions in the kid? Well, that’s a conversation that could be had, but I’ll not be taking the responsibility for it.
Feeling all the more anxious…

I don’t feel comfortable.
Almost as though I’m in a show I don’t understand. As though I learned my lines, and blocking, and costume changes, but when I arrived on stage, I don’t recognize the other actors, or dialogue, or anything really. As though I prepped for a completely different show.
That seems rather dramatic as I read it, but it’s exactly how I feel!
That scenario is appropriate for the level of confusion and anxiety I am experiencing.

I hear my mother hissing, “Don’t be so dramatic!”
My initial response is the hang my head.

But the reality is that this is my life, and the only one I’ll get.
I feel the way I feel. I’m not behaving in an overly dramatic way, I’m just feeling my feels in a somewhat dramatic way.
Feeling my feels is only mine. So I’ll feel as dramatic (or not) as is appropriate to me.
I’m going to do my best to figure how to work through this. To do what needs to be done, tempered with not feeling so anxious about it.

However overwhelmed I’m feeling, I have the power.
My life. My power.
I can do whatever, whenever, and however it works best for me.
Now, currently it doesn’t feel like much is working…but I have the power to change that.
I just have to figure a way to make the time to tap into it…

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Categories: me, mental health | Tags: , , , , , , | 6 Comments

observe. accept. love.

Some you may know of the app facebook has that shares memories. It’s called “On This Day” and it shows things you’ve posted on that day in previous years.
I don’t check this all the days, I just happened to do it this morning because of something someone else posted that involved me.

Here’s a post from this day two years ago:
dancing girl at great falls
While we were at Great Falls today, I saw this little girl jumping from rock to rock singing, “I am awesome!” (The tune was precious.) Her mom just watched…she didn’t say anything and the little girl didn’t do anything but jump and sing about how awesome she is.
This is why we shouldn’t be saying, “Good job!” Or sometimes not even, “You did it!”
She didn’t need anything from anybody. She knows intrinsically that she is enough…I want to be this little girl please.

Seeing this post stimulated the memory of how moved I was in the moment watching this little girl. She didn’t need anything from anyone. Her mother stood nearby watching, but said nothing. Not “that’s not safe”. Not “way to go”. She said nothing. She observed. She accepted.

My years of early childhood training have given me a different way of looking at the world. At children in the world. The need to have freedom to take risks. They learn through play. They learn through risk taking. They don’t need to be praised every forty-seven seconds. They don’t need a trophy for participating.
They need to feel safe. Safe to explore. Safe to try. Safe to play. Safe to learn. Safe to experience that all-important “I did it!” moment of accomplishment.
It’s obvious to me that this little girl felt safe.
It’s obvious to me that her mother felt safe.
She let that child (who was not yet school-age) take risks by jumping on those rocks. Her mother knew she could fall and get hurt. And that wouldn’t have been fun for anybody, but the little girl would have learned from that. She would have known how to have sturdier feet the next time. She would have jumped more solidly.
That little girl’s mother said nothing while she sang and jumped from rock to rock and back again. But even more interesting to me is that the child never said, “Watch me!” She was completely focused on her task, jumping from rock to rock and singing: I am awesome! It didn’t matter to her if her mom was watching. It didn’t matter to her that she was or was not praised. She was working hard and she was having a blast doing it!

“Watch me, Miss Robynbird!” I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard that from a child in the last two years.
I cringe every single time one of them says it.
I have said: You can do it. You don’t need me to watch you.
At first they didn’t understand, I could see the deflation happen in their little bodies. But over time, they began to understand that I trusted them and I made the environment safe enough that they could try anything. They began to ask their peers to watch, this created opportunities to build their cooperation skills. Created opportunities for them to mentor each other.
I feel good about that.
I’ve said: You did it! more times than I should have. But never will you hear me say: Good job! I might say: Well done you! Give me five.

YBW and I had a conversation about praise. He believes everyone wants to hear it. I couldn’t agree more. But my point to him was praise causes people to look outside themselves for validation. They’re not motivated my curiosity or desire to try/play/learn. They’re motivated by and for someone else.
Of course we all want an “attagirl” once in a while. Working hard and not getting recognized sometimes feels icky. But praise is a double edged sword. The other side of praise is criticism. I grew up with enough criticism for three kids and precious little praise. In all honesty, I’d trade praise and it’s ugly twin to feel safe enough to try without anyone’s opinion.
When I work hard and finish a job well done I feel that sense of accomplishment. I experience my own “I did it!” moment.
Would it be nice to hear praise?
Absolutely!
Do I need that praise?
Not really.

We’ve created a new generation of kids that thrive on praise. That are motivated by praise, by participation trophies. That graduate from high school only so the principal has numbers that grow.
What if we took a giant step back and took a page from the mom’s book?
What if we observe?
What if we accept?
What if we love?

I want to be that little girl. I want to be enough for myself like she is.
I want that for all of us.

Categories: education, love, me, on being a mom | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

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