Last night, while watching a new show, I had next to me a second slice of a delicious Nutella cake, with a generous dollop of Nutella itself. I had looked forward to it all afternoon and was actually hungry. I don’t think I was even half way in when I felt that it was too much. But guess what? I ate it all.
This morning I was feeling a bit disgusted with myself and reflected: what’s the rush? What is the point of going at full speed for no special reason if I am not enjoying it ? Upon further thought, I realized that I have frequently rushed on multiple things:
- Eating all the food. If was in front of me, it was going to be finished by me. Thankfully, I have never gone without; I think that I just relied on food as a coping and entertainment mechanism, causing food to be linked with with a good feeling.
- Reaching out to people. Growing up, the way to feed a relationship is by sharing everything; we measure the quality of the relationship based on how much we are willing to share. The older we get, the more selective we become about the things we bring others into, and relationships are measured on trust. It took me a while to kick the habit of spilling all the beans as soon as I went through something. I was stealing from myself the opportunity to understand my reality in a more complete way before inviting someone into it.
- Shopping. The impulse of buying comes from wanting the rush from making a purchase and/or the fear that it won’t be there if you try to come back for it later. I have been learning to define what it is that I am truly shopping for. At times, it is a valid need, and at times, it is a desire for entertainment or a good time. If it is a need, I consider the value in the most logical way possible, understanding that I have the power over my money, and that it isn’t a privilege to purchase or have this item. If it is just for a distraction, I try to understand if what I found would bring value to me for a long time.
Because I have spoken before about all these bad habits, I am going to give myself one pat on the back and take my deeper analysis of weaknesses as a step towards improvement. Looking at them all at once, I can see not only a scarcity mentality, but a need for happiness. I have used these actions as a way to feel good and have fun. It is very common for these to be a way to have a good time, and it is very normal to search for ways to be happy. These specific ones branch out in me in part because of a scarcity mentality. Yet, as I continue reflecting, I see the opportunity for new hobbies that will edify me and not push me to a binge that in the end will most probably leave me empty. I don’t want these mechanisms to drive me. I will enjoy them but I don’t want my happiness defined by the ability to engage in them. In all honesty, I look forward to having new ways of enjoying myself.
I encourage you to take a step back and think: what are you constantly running to? Stop and reflect on it for a few minutes. You will be able to meet what you are longing for and what you are afraid of. Knowing will empower you to change your course or keep on stronger.