So, the stars aren’t perfectly aligned for me to be a contender today.
The few times they have been, depression was involved, and the outcome wasn’t pretty. My depression has this way of making things seem alright, and then it springs its trap. One second I am thinking “Life is good,” and the next I am circling the drain.
Now when everything aligns, I expect trouble.
This leaves me wondering about my future. Should I even try to look for the next big thing? Is it possible that I can control events and determine my own destiny? I would like to believe this is true. After all, I have spent my entire life as a cup-half-full kind of guy. My days have been spent looking for the best in people.
And I expect the best from myself, as I have set my bar pretty darn high.
Of course, this can easily become perfectionism. And this idea of things being perfect is one thing that I spend my time getting ready for. And this stops me from moving forward. It can also slump down into if-then thinking, which leaves me stuck and unable to make a decision. If only the heavens would part and someone would hand me the answers to life, then I could move forward with confidence.
Why wait, as I may only have 25 more years to make my move?
I have heard that death is a certainty. And there is every indication that this is true. Taxes, I am finding out, are not a certainty. But that’s another day. I can feel myself starting to dance with my thoughts. This is not a good thing. What ends up happening is I spend all of my time getting ready. This leaves no time to actually DO whatever it is I think I should be doing.
As an example, I have 12 checklists I developed years ago as tools to help a person land a job.
And after 10 years, I am still adding to them, adjusting them, and cleaning them up. Have I shared them with a live audience? Not really. Ok, I have gotten some feedback and have made some changes based on that. The feedback I received was all positive and encouraging.
But if I waited to release it, I could add even more value to the 12 checklists.
So now, I have 12 wonderful tools to help a person land a job, and I have not shared them. I find that I am still wanting to share them but only when they are perfect. And guess what? They are never going to be perfect and unless I change my attitude toward these checklists, I will never share them with job seekers. But that’s how I roll sometimes.
And other times, I can be unstoppable.
Look at this blog. I began working out my relationship with my depression four years ago. And I am still blogging, writing, about my challenges and successes. I am holding nothing back and have used this space to work through all kinds of issues related to my depression. I have worked on unhelpful thinking, medicine management, sleep issues, and stigma.
Stigma is what I have used as an excuse to not come 100% clean.
After a year or two, I finally felt comfortable using my first name on my website. But I still haven’t gone public. Only one person has figured out the relationship between this blog and who I am. I have not shared any of my 550 blog posts on Facebook. And I am being careful (I hope) to not share personal information that will identify others.
Yet all of this is designed, I am certain, to impede my progress and give me yet another excuse to not complete what I started.
And this last episode was telling. Even as I was tumbling down the steep slopes into the abyss, I was still certain I could control my outcome. After all, I had pulled out of many full-blown crashes over the past 50+ years. Why wouldn’t this episode be any different?
But this time, I couldn’t get out of my way and just move on as if nothing had happened.
The morning I went to the hospital, I boiled my life going forward down to three choices. The first would just be to give up and end it all. That was the most frightening choice and was the one I just couldn’t consider. Second, I could keep doing the same thing while expecting a different result. This would mean walking away from the episode, never turning back, and sweeping whatever was left under the rug. This choice seemed like the crazy one.
Choice three, which was what I did, was to seek professional medical help.
So, I got one thing right in my 67 years on this planet. But as much as I say I want to come clean and be 100% transparent, I still hide behind a shield. As an example, I still write this blog under the alias, Depression Is Not My Boss.
All it does is give me another way to not be 100%, to not share myself completely with others. I find ways to stretch out my next move until I am not moving at all. Once I get this corrected, then I will move forward.