everything thats ever hurt you…
you wallow in the reminiscent pain of every memory…
past and present collide to create a mesh of oblivious insanity…
numb to reality you fall asleep in a bed of a black and white rainbow…
you fall asleep so your subconscious could pick up the pieces and create a story…
Dreams that hardly make sense because…
Because not even your unconscious mind can comprehend the severity of repression…
Push the pain back in until the next night….
The next night when you think of everything…
I’ve been an over achiever for as long as I remember. I strive to do my best at all times and won’t take any less than almost perfect. When I was in school, from grade school to undergrad, I would try to do more than was asked and be at the top of each class and level. I wouldn’t sleep, sometimes wouldn’t eat, until things were done in its longest and most thought out form (still first drafts so it wasn’t perfect) but I would put my all in everything. From first grade to my last semester in college I continued to run my race of perfectionism but recently noticed it began to effect my health last January.
When I was in grade school I made it my goal to get over a 90 in every test, in every class and do every assignment and go to school every single day. When I didn’t go to school I would cringe in my skin and worry that I would get too far behind. A break in my streak occurred in a vocal class in high school I had for four years. That’s when the “weakest link” phrase entered my psyche. I couldn’t be perfect in that class and I wasn’t as good as I thought (or at least the teacher made me think so) so I worked my butt off just to get the same results. Every day I started to hate myself and the class because I couldn’t be the perfectionist I wanted to be. I liked to sing but I found and believed and couldn’t sing well and I wasn’t good enough. I compared myself to others and ingrained the “weakest link”mindset in how I thought about myself. When I graduated high school and left the class, my perfectionism got worse, but I began to get tired.
*FAST FORWARD FOUR YEARS*
As my last year in college progressed I noticed that I didn’t want to do anything and lacked the motivation and drive to wake up in the morning. I dreaded every day and would leave my assignments to the absolute last minute (not a good idea for perfectionist tendencies and results). Because I was a perfectionist procrastinator I started to feel my anxiety peak at its all time high because I had lots to do and no motivation to do but the guilt of my perfectionism at the forefront of my anxiety and minor depression. I feared I would disappoint my professors and damage my GPA so I pushed myself beyond my limits (health wise) and found myself exhausted and unhappy.
I was tired. My body. My soul. My motivation. Me, I was tired. I wanted to leave it all there in my campus apartment because I couldn’t do it. I was plagued with panic because it was a lot and I didn’t believe I could do it.
Despite the struggle of getting up in the morning everyday for a year I managed to get two 4.0s (surprisingly) first in all four years. I wasn’t proud of myself really. I felt I was supposed to get it. I’m a perfectionist.
Now, at the end of the summer a Syracuse University graduate I’m still exhausted and I don’t get up early. I do one thing and I’m tired. I want to sleep all the time and its been three months. Shouldn’t I be rested? Well I’m not. I just want to spend time with my family and not have to put in effort to be perfect. I don’t want to try anymore to make others happy. I want to be happy.
If you read through all that I’ve written and find yourself to be a perfectionist, its okay…you don’t have to be. If you’re a hard worker, great! Keep working hard, but don’t let failure or what people say to you make you feel your not working as hard as you are. Don’t compare yourself to anyone and don’t push yourself past what you can take. Take breaks you don’t have to be perfect. One or two or three “low scores” isn’t bad nor is lost opportunities. Sleep and be proud of yourself. Be vocal to the ones who care. Don’t wait till you’re too drained to say you need support and please love yourself, say no when necessary.
From someone who is still exhausted from years or perfectionism, know that its okay not to be at the top. Try your best. It is good enough. Your effort will reap its harvest.
There are just some things that have happened or that have been said to me that live with me everyday and haunt me at the latest hours of the night
“You are the weakest link”
“I’m disappointed in you”
“I love her more than you”
“I don’t want to put in any effort for you”
“Nah, she ugly”
“You weren’t competative enough”
“Theres nothing I can do to help you”
“You’re a dub”
“I think you should change your profile picture because you are confusing people”
“You are affecting your family”
“Stop being discouraged”
“Get over it”
“People are watching you”
“That’s a sin”
“..but in the Bible it says”
“….going to hell”
“Don’t you want to go to heaven?”
“What happened? You can do better”
“You can’t do that”
“You’re not supposed to hang out with those type of people”
“I don’t care what you think”
“Oh, I didn’t invite you because…”
“You think too much…”
“Stop saying you’re depressed…”
“God is watching you…”
“Relax its not that serious”
While some of these phrases may seem harmless and others in need of more context, they have been a guide to how I think about myself, how I view situations and circumstances, and how I approach new opportunities. These phrases have been a hindrance to my mental growth and well being.
In order to take away from things that have been said that may have scarred and affected how you think, you have to use them as fuel. Let them scab up and fall off of how you perceive who you are. Use them as excess motivation.
Let what is said to you build you up even if it hurt you. Let it build your confidence, bravery, power and self-image. Turn every phrase into a positive, a tactic that can’t halt your progress.
Everyone has those phrases of people who drilled a perception in their head, use them. Make them amo. Make them “I heard that before” phrases that don’t bother you. Move above and beyond. Move forward.
Self-hate comes from the deepest point of yourself and thrives in negativity, guilt, and fear. Its built from childhood and continues until you are so self-aware that you can feel the self-hate dictating how you react or respond to a circumstance or situation. I never felt my self-hate work so hard until I wanted to fall in love. Self-hate is like a negative conscious. A consciousness that doesn’t want you to find your most powerful potential. Self-hate is created. No one is born with it. Working to love yourself in the mist of such a strong core of negative consciousness takes so much energy it creates a illusion of depression and anxiety and makes you live in the fear and guilt that the self-hate encompasses.
Self-hate doesn’t necessarily mean you hate yourself, its more like you trained yourself to react negatively in a state of self-pity and sadness at a level that is second nature. Phrases like “I can’t” and “I won’t” guide how you see and respond to challenges. You may not see that yourhate enough or worth much because that core essence is so strong that you actually believe that you’re not good about or worth much.
Breaking from self-hate consciousness takes active work and daily positive gestures toward yourself. Talk to yourself positively and don’t take things personal. Make sure to put yourself first and cut things out that is toxic and triggers the core negative consciousness youlr trying to destroy.
Work to make self-hate consciousness self-love awareness. Love yourself and put your happiness at the front of every opportunity. Don’t compromise your happiness and well-being for anything or anyone.