Thursday, November 17, 2011

Get Busy Living Or...

In all my (more recent) years of therapy, something I really got out of it was my therapist telling me to set timelines and goals for myself.  I have trouble with giving people and situations the benefit of the doubt a lot-- to a fault.  I know what many of you (if there are any men reading this) are thinking.  No- I'm not talking about having babies and my clock-ticking.  I'm not talking about rules society set up for us and following that kind of a timeline.  I'm talking about setting boundaries for myself on things I have absolutely no control over.  Yes, I get anxious when I have no say in what is happening to me.  That might be a bad quality, but I can't really help it, I can only try to soothe it as much as possible.

One way of doing that is giving myself some control by setting limits to what I will allow to happen.  How much of my time I will allow someone to waste, how much of my energy or emotions I will allow someone to take, etc.  Those kinds of limits and timelines.  If I don't do this, I allow people to take and take and take until I wake up one day and go, "holy shit.  I just wasted so much time.  I could have been doing something that would make me happier."

I think most people find this to be true with jobs.  Most people I know settle into their jobs, relationships, area they live, etc.  And then they bitch.  I don't want to fall into that cycle.  I have made some bold moves in the last year and a half.  You don't know how something can turn out if you don't try, so I've been trying.  I've been really trying.  Pushing myself way out of every comfort zone I've ever come to know (and love).

I guess now comes the time that I have to start setting some timelines for myself.  I did set one when I moved.  I swore I would at least give Connecticut a year before I ran and that timeline came and went.  It was hard to stick to at times.  There were definitely days where I was ready to head out and maybe not run home (since very few of my friends from back home were there to help me keep my chin up at all - I guess Dan can thank some of them for me feeling too lonely to even go back to what used to be my "home" on those days), but run.  I have even the tiniest bit of knowledge of a place like San Diego and I know for a fact that I fit in better there, the people are nice and friendly and open and that there are actually jobs in my field there.  Some days I thought, "If I'm going to start over, why not do it in a place I know I can transition smoothly into?"

The answer is pretty obvious.  I moved for Dan.  I'm here for Dan.  Dan has to be here for the duration of his residency (which is two more years)...  So unless I'm ready to give up Dan (rest assured, I am not), then I'm not ready to flee.

Things I saw for myself happening aren't.  Things that were well on their way (at some point...  I think?) are not any longer.  Things are at a stand-still in all areas for me, currently.  And while it is incredibly cliche, there is a Steve Jobs quote that stands out in my head daily, now:

"For the past 33 years, I have looked in the mirror every morning and asked myself: "If today were the last day of my life, would I want to do what I am about to do today?" And whenever the answer has been "No" for too many days in a row, I know I need to change something...almost everything - all external expectations, all pride, all fear of embarrassment or failure - these things just fall away in the face of death, leaving only what is truly important. Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose." - Steve Jobs

It's inspiring.  So inspiring that today I lived so honestly and boldly, I think I'll actually sleep comfortably tonight knowing that I lived today how I would have if I were dying soon-ish.  I was very deliberate with my actions and words today and it felt amazing.  I lived for me today, not someone else.  I really wish it wasn't under the circumstances it was- I wish I wasn't defending myself - but I stood up for myself and for what is right.  I felt like I had nothing to lose because in my situation, I'd rather have "lost" than continued the way things were.  I know I'm being incredibly vague, but it's just one of those topics I can't really be loud about here.

So today, I inspired myself.  It's rare.  It shouldn't be.  I'm going to start taking more of an active role in my own life.  There will always be things I have no control over, but if I'm not happy, I can't sit and watch anymore.  It's not in me and it's not something I want for myself.  I'm not a person who has ever lived with regret and I don't plan on starting now.  I'm too old for that shit.  Too old and too good for it.  Sorry.  I'm not saying me exclusively.  It's meant to be an inclusive statement.  If you're 15 and being treated like crap or living for someone else and not doing what makes you happy, you're too old for that shit.  It's no way to live...

I guess that's where I'm trying to get back to.  "Living."  I feel like that's stopped for me since June.  I need to live so I won't regret anything when death comes a knockin'.  I'm not saying that to be morbid.  I'm saying that to be honest.  It's something I think about and something everyone should.  I think the world would be a different place if more people even considered it.  Forget just being upset over petty bullshit, but people would be REALLY living.  Not putting off their dreams for one reason or another.  That gets dangerous- procrastination.

The next step, I have no idea.  I don't have control over much, but I'll figure out what I do have control over and I'll make it mine.


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