It's the first Wednesday of the month, so you know what that means ... it's time for another Insecure Writer's Support Group meeting. IWSG was created by the awesome ninja captain Alex J. Cavanaugh, and you can find out the other members of the group here.
Okay, this will not come as a surprise to most people, but here it is: I am an overachiever.
That's right. I was the girl in school who felt bad about getting a 100 grade point average in a class instead of the usual 101. I remember being disappointed in my Advance Algebra/Trig class because I got a 108 on my exam instead of the possible 114 (14 extra credit points) because I couldn't find six of my previous tests for the additional extra credit. In my senior year of high school, I was not only in choir, guitar, rec soccer, indoor soccer, drama club, forensics club, Spanish Club, the Spanish National Honor Society, and the National Honor Society, but I also performed in seven theater productions. I never took a study hall the entire time I was in high school, so I always had seven classes every day. Even in college, I had a semester where I took 21 credit hours, which I wouldn't recommend because I finally just broke down.
By that point, I was a tad suicidal, clinically depressed, had social anxiety issues, was cutting myself sometimes to relieve the stress, had a tension headache for the seven or so years, and was basically a mess. I'd crashed and burned.
Through medication for about a year and slowing down for a year and a half after college before I found a part-time job, which led to my recent full-time job, everything got much better and easier. I enjoy my work. I love writing and reading. I like that I'm able to make some money from what I love--even if it's a little bit here and there. I am happy.
But being an overachiever is hard to overcome. My mind races to do everything I can as if I'm being timed. Right now, I have enough story ideas for the next twenty years, and I'm already making to-do lists (in my head) for what I would like to write through 2017. I feel the rush to do everything now. Sometimes it's harder to be happy at what I accomplished because all I see is what more I should've done. This year I've managed to self-publish nine ebooks and two paperback books. I should be damn proud of that, and I am ... in a way, but I still have a hard time not wishing I could've done more.
I don't want to crash and burn again.
So I'm telling myself to slow down a bit. Not be so rigid in my timelines. To take a breath. If I need a few weeks of just reading or watching TV or playing some games on my Kindle Fire HD, then I should do that and not feel guilty about it. It's okay not to be online every day or respond to all emails quickly. It's okay. Really. And since it may take awhile to sink in, then if you see me doing too much, just take me aside and tell me to stop and calm down. Sometimes we overachievers need help in getting the message. *smiles*
So what are your insecurities today?