Self Help Junkie

This is but a snippet of the self help literature that I own. Self help is a BOOMING industry and when I mean BOOMING I mean billions of dollars are spent every year on books, apps, podcasts, seminars, TV shows, radio programs, blogs and taxi drivers. And at the moment they are all telling me to have a vision for 2018. And have a goal. And a plan to reach that goal and a coach to help me plan to reach that goal.

Get organised! Clean out all your cupboards and donate all the shit you buy to charity. Your life will be profoundly better if you have matching towels.

FOR FUCK SAKE, JUST BE HAPPY ALREADY.

The television blares at you about the sales, so you feel the need to go and buy the new couch because it is twenty percent off. Max out your credit card and then realise that you have to buy four new pairs of school shoes in a few weeks and oh look, it is baked beans for dinner again.

I need to stop and ask myself, why do I need a why? 

“Know your why?” is HUGE at the moment and it is making my neck itch. “Knowing my purpose” is another one that makes me get the runs.  All this stress about how to avoid stress is manifesting itself in, yep…. stress. Thankfulness. Gratitude. Mindfulness. All of the things that you need to be to be a fully functioning member of the social media race, let alone human society.

I got up this morning and went to the bathroom only to find cat shit on the bathmat. Some days you can deal with cat shit. Today was not that day. I mindfully folded the towel up so that no faeces should touch my delicate skin and marched straight out into the bin where it was deposited carefully to avoid any splatter. (It was quite runny FYI). Seeing that I was at this point, wide awake, I decided that my exercise regime had to start again so I took off for walk. Of course I was listening to a podcast about being happy and setting goals and having a purpose and all of the things that we are urged to do, and my head started spinning again, with my negative self talk kicking in, telling me that I was just falling though life, not knowing my why…..

And then I saw an old lady tending her garden. She had a radio on playing some classical music and a hot beverage of some description sitting on her fence. She looked up at me as I passed and greeted me with the biggest smile and a cheery “Good Morning!” when all of a sudden it struck me.

I was totally overthinking EVERYTHING. I was looking for a quick fix in my self help obsession and my quest for finding happiness. My “why” is to get up each morning, write something down and be ok that I am ok. Not every day is going to be filled with happiness, and that’s ok too. There is too much pressure out there for us to “SMASH 2018 OUT OF THE BALL PARK!” and I am a little over it.

So my goal for 2018 is to try my best to be a fully paid up decent member of the human race. And stop overthinking everything. Mrs. Goodman is forever telling me “It is what it is…” and it is. And it was Johnny Carson who said “Happiness is finding two olives in your martini when you’re hungry.”

And so it is cheers from me, as I must away as my friend has just text messaged me from Adelaide airport to say her Labrador has gotten out and so a search party is assembling.

Do you have a goal for 2018?

 

  • Heidi D

    I don’t set a goal for the whole year. Life is so unpredictable, things happen when you least expect them & throw a spanner in the works. I hate that stressful feeling,as the year goes on, of “oh no I’m not doing …., I’m failing at my one goal !” I set little goals “this week I want to ……” or when things are really full on it might just be “today I am going to try to …..”

    • This is just perfect! Thanks Heidi xx

  • Donna

    Happy to say that I’ve never bought a self help book. Not to say that I don’t need help, just don’t think others have my answers.
    I pick little goals chipping away what annoys me the most. Too many goals or too long a list dumps me into paralysis followed by failure.
    PS. It’s so hard to stop the overthinking…. time I accepted that is how my brain works and deal with it.

    • Thanks for sharing your wisdom Donna. Thinking small works better for me xx

  • Emily Furlong

    I love this. Being the best human you can be is truly an admirable goal. I was asked the other day what my NY resolution was and I confessed to not having one. Resolutions are too easily broken and discarded. I just said, I aim to do my best. To expect more from myself is ludicrous. I will do my best and be happy with it.

    • And to go with the flow. Take the good days with the bad xx

  • The old lady in her garden had it right… SIMPLE. Keep it SIMPLE. The trouble with most of the self help stuff – as far as I can see – is that it’s bloody complicated! And you know what? I’d be walking without the the podcast. If you’re out early, have your ears out and listen to the birds, and the sounds of the neighbourhood waking up…it can be lovely. And just BE…as you walk. It’s enough. YOU’RE enough.

    • I know! To many things to tick off. And yes to fucking off the podcast. I am missing out on the good stuff xx

  • YES! I love this post! My goals for 2018 pretty much boil down to what they are every year when you strip away the overthought details. I want to be resilient, I want to find positivity, I want to make sure I don’t forget to take care of myself (mentally and physically) and I want to ‘grow through what I go through’ (there’s a self help cliche for you haha). Because we all know what happens to best laid plans!

    • I too want to be resilient but at the same time I don’t mind being vulnerable xx

  • One of the things about getting older I guess is to leave what other people are doing/saying/being comparisons behind.

    I am learning to “be” myself and it is a change I’ve had to embrace because I no longer “do” anything which I had wrapped myself up in forever!

    No longer teacher, principal, active grandmother caring for kiddies I was a bit (a lot!) lost & add in the fact that I was getting closer to 70 than 65 all compounded to put me in a spiralling anxiety state in early 2017. I read lots of great books & listened to CDs and really found the notion that we have no actual control of anyone other than ourselves a lesson I needed to hear over & over.

    Still I could not find the contented state that I saw my husband in. Sigh. Then I found out I had cancer. Yes it was scary & there were times tears would not stop & after I woke from 11 hours of surgery, knowing the cancer was 95% to have gone I changed.

    My inner strength which had been crippled by my overthinking arose & allowed me self confidence to find its way back and in the almost 6 months since then I have had maybe a few little setbacks but I am anxiety free & living well. The self help books etc played a part as they were part of my worst times but now they remain on the shelf while I live as well as I can now.

    Love to you Mrs W!