I think I live a fairly simple existence. I stay at home with my kids. I get to plan my days around their needs. I try to surround myself with people who inspire me to be more of that which I desire to be.
This wasn’t always the case. For a long while, life seemed complicated and I allowed that complication to flurry. I didn’t trust myself enough to commit to the truth. I didn’t trust my thoughts or my opinions or my beliefs. Everything was up for question and debate. Everything was subject to someone else’s opinion.
But that’s a very confusing way to live, and it’s not one I would recommend to any adult. Yes, question things. Seek your answers. Reject complacent certainty.
But trust yourself. Trust where you are. Trust who you are.
During my calm moments, which gratefully are more and more plentiful, I am able to reside in this world of intellectual security that it took me so long to cultivate. From that place of security, of trust in my own intellectual abilities, I have been able to question things and re-question things and grow. All because I had faith in my ability to discern.
But then moments of anxiety sneak in. They can start out small and somewhat innocuous, but if they take root, they can grow in an instant. They can infect everything, like weeds climbing through my soul.
One thing that I never understood was why these moments of anxiety could take my world and flip it upside down and inside out. Why would I get so lost? Why would an hour or three of anxiety take weeks to recover from? Why, during that time, would it feel like everything I had created came crashing down and I would have to start fresh, from the absolute beginning?
But now I’m starting to understand. It’s becoming clearer.
Everything tumbles around during that time because the one thing that is absolutely required for anxiety to take hold is for me to lose sight of who I am and my abilities to judge the good from the bad, the real from the pretend, the scary from the benign.
As soon as I give that agency away, as soon as I trust the opinion of another person over my own, all is lost.
With all understandings such as this, this wisdom can only take me so far. Now I need to combat it. I need to find some assurance in myself that I am okay and that I am capable. That I’m intelligent and discerning and thoughtful.
Insight has always come more easily to me than change.
Anxiety Chalkboard from Shutterstock.