What Was I Thinking?

Do you ever wake up and say to yourself, “What the hell am I doing?”  You feel the anxiety wrap its gnarly fingers around your gut and squeeze.  And then it reaches up through your chest making it  difficult to breathe.  Some nasty little demon is pushing down on your diaphragm with one hand and choking you with the other.  That demon is you.  

My Inner Demon

Today I woke up and thought,   “Yes, I quit my six figure corporate job with a cushy title and left all my work friends so I could  sit alone for hours and coach and write about living a  healthier, more joyful life.”

What was I thinking?  I thought that this would be the best thing I could ever do.

So what changed?  What is causing the fear and doubt today?  To find out, I begin to coach myself.  I start to breathe more deeply and I open the corners of my mind to allow the random, negative self-talk to surface. I journal the thoughts:

This isn’t going fast enough. I should be a conglomerate by now.   I suck at Face Book and Linked In and I wish I could reach my virtual assistant who is MIA and that I have to finish my bookkeeping and the dog just puked and the basement needs to be finished and on and on and on and on…..the voices scream inside my head and my stomach churns.  I focus again on breathing deeply ….because if I let these thoughts control me, I won’t get anything finished today. My creativity and my joy will be consumed by the nasty little meat grinder in my belly.  And I can’t let that happen. My life depends on it.

So next step.  I question each negative thought….is it true?  How fast is fast enough?  Do I really need to be a conglomerate?  Do I really suck at Face Book, or am I just in learning mode?  Of course the basement will get finished! One by one, I tear the nagging thoughts apart until I can see them for what they are: lies I tell myself when I feel overwhelmed.  I re-frame each thought, because when I look more closely, I see that all is well; there is progress.  I have much to be grateful for.   I have wonderful clients, I love to write, I’m making money doing what I love.  What more could I need? 

As the saying goes, life is a journey, not a destination. My breathing relaxes.  I make plans.  I prioritize.  I get perspective. I feel gratitude.  All is well.   I just need to do the next thing, whatever it is in this moment. I let go of the outcome.

So I ask again, what the hell am I doing?  Turns out, I’m doing exactly what I want to do, and I hope you are too.  Just remember to keep an eye on that little inner demon – he’ll sneak up on you when you least expect it!

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Date: Friday, 25. June 2010 13:24
Trackback: Trackback-URL Category: Career & Finance, Self Actualization

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  1. 1

    Oh Catherine…you are so NOT alone!!!

    You are missed terribly every day, but mostly truly admired for your courage and heart!!

  2. 2

    Hey Les! Thanks for reading and commenting. I wanted readers to know that when making big changes, even when they are the right ones, doesn't mean there won't be days when we have fear. Do you think I went overboard on making that point? Miss you too!

  3. 3

    Voicing the fears of all successful people. You sound fine to me. Good luck!

    PS Nobody sucks at Facebook, that's why FB is cool — it is for each person what they want it to be.

  4. 4

    Thanks Rich! I am actually doing fine, but I think I wrote this dramatically enough to scare everyone that I am falling off the edge…maybe I should edit!

  5. 5

    Great post. It makes me comfortable to know that even you have those types of days. You're such a great coach. I think I'm going to bookmark this for when I'm having a bad day.

  6. 6

    Yes, even coaches have bad days! Thank goodness I have the tools to coach myself out of it!

  7. 7


    Loved what you had to say, I know that inner demon all too well. Sounds like you got yours under control!

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