[11/1/20 CHI: I wrote this post several months ago, but decided it was time for me to come clean at this time.]
It’s been about five days since my last entry on that. Had I stuck with it a little longer, I would have been able to say that I’ve tracked my food for 30-days straight. I’m a bit disappointed, but it’s okay. During that time, I was preparing for a bunch of new things that were happening in my life alongside my family, and that takes emotional bandwidth and energy.
Something I’m quickly realizing headfirst is that the more new things I embark on, the less time and energy I have to maintain the projects I’ve been wanting to do beforehand. Boring but necessary stuff like actually reorganizing my room and clothes again as well as cleaning up all my digital files (on my phone, my surface, my PC, and my browser… and it’s a Lot).
I’m also learning to “under”-schedule myself. I originally thought I could put two big plans in a day, but life can happen quite a bit (and by that I mean… appointments tend to run longer than you think, and if you have to reschedule something for a later time, you can unwittingly end up pissing off the other person in question). So yeah. Plan for travel time, of course, but also buffer and recovery time too, when you just wanna veg out, take a walk, or read. Or in case life happens, which it tends to do. Taking things slowly does not reflect a weakness on your part.
I really envy those who can be on-the-go all of the time. Maybe I can become that person! But at the same time, I’ve noticed that I tend to do more poorly when I push myself too hard, too quickly. I might be able to take it at first, but I’m a pretty emotional person, and I need time to soothe myself before being able to properly carry on. You don’t necessarily become a tougher person by re-subjecting yourself to a perceived stressor. You might just numb yourself and lose sight of your value and what you’re feeling (at least, that’s what happened to me!) If you’re stuck on, say, a video game level, sometimes you need to stop retrying and take on a few side quests to get stronger before returning to it. This is probably not the case with my peers, but that’s how it was for me.
In the past few months, I’ve had my own career plans come to a sudden, premature stop. I’m no longer in the professional program that I had worked so hard to matriculate into and stay in. At the same time, I found myself relying too much on others to stay in the program, and I felt so doubtful and uncertain about my own abilities. Impostor syndrome, while it was not uncommon among my cohort, was something that I felt acutely, way too often. When I sat down to study, I felt this emotional turmoil as well as all the relationship/self-esteem troubles come to the surface. Therapy helps, but if your program also has you preparing for several onslaughts of exams on top of your own emotional burdens, then… it’s a tough time.
Maybe I demanded too much from myself. Maybe I should have simply accepted that I was a pretty simple, imperfect person and that’s okay and should have tried to let go of my own sense of self-importance. At the same time, I clung to that sense of self-importance in order to stay in the program. I prided myself on being studious and “smart” and felt like graduating would have given myself and the people I loved the happiness and security I was searching for. But I think I only tried so hard to hide the deep sense of insecurity that I felt. I don’t feel that smart or nerdy or passionate as my peers. I glimpsed at the snapchat feeds that my classmates had, and felt…. unfulfilled. Not that such things were meant for my fulfillment anyway, but none seemed to strike a chord with me. I felt alone in my cohort. I wasn’t as anxious as my peers were for the success I should have been striving for. I wasn’t as hungry for the prestige and power. I just wanted to be at a good place with my family again. To be financially stable. And to feel like I had a good circle of friends to grow alongside with.
I must confess that I feel a lot of fear and uncertainty about my future. I don’t feel deserving of being a doctor – I feel slow and emotionally imbalanced right now. I don’t feel resilient enough or independent/ambitious. I want to please my parents, but how can I if I’m not pleasing myself as well?
I may not know where I’m going yet, but I know that I can only go up from here. I will start by looking at what fulfills me and the lifestyle that supports this sense. My source of infinite reward.
P.S. A long time ago, when I led a team of 12-14 people in my youth group during a retreat, I felt so frustrated at myself. I felt alone, friendless, and frankly pretty slow. I worked hard and improved, but could not understand why I felt so unhappy. My team wasn’t listening to me because I was so distressed and so I felt… even more powerless. What could I have done to earn their respect? To rally them to try their hardest? They were certainly trying, but I felt like I wasn’t drawing out their full potential and fervor. I felt like I was the only one who was this passionate about my team and that my passion wasn’t fully understood by them. 😦
What I’m trying to say is, am I this slow because… I was depressed? My sense of resilience feels hampered, so… maybe. It will take time to unravel regardless. If not, perhaps this sensitivity can be used for another career path. Let us see.
P.P.S. I think I was just not having fun. Maybe I was taking myself too seriously. And I think I still am. It’s weird. I’ve always associated having success with being serious. But I think it’s hard to lead others or myself when I myself am clearly having a terrible time, lol. It reminds me of that one character in an anime (lol) where the main character confesses she is willing to sacrifice herself or even erase her existence if it would save the country she had sworn to protect, but surprisingly, the others call her out for this: how can a king possibly lead their people if they are so willing to sacrifice their own selves? Such hypocrisy shows that they do not respect or value her own life or the people she is leading. Hmm…. my head hurts, lol. But I think I am on to something here.
P.P.P.S. I just realized I shared that I had already left grad school in a post a few months ago. Holy. Note to self to not post anything when I’m half asleep, lmaoooo