I find it absurdly difficult sometimes to know what I actually want or need.
It can be really simple—like what I want to cook and eat for dinner. Sometimes it’s a bigger decision, such as do I want to go on that almost free trip to Miami with my significant other, who is going for conference? Or is it too much hassle or expense for just a couple of days?
How can I not know? How can I not decide? I should at least know if I want to or not, right?
Often, I turn to my partner and ask, “What do you want? Do you want to go? Do you want me to go to Miami?”
I am hoping maybe he can guide me with his wants and feelings. But I know that is just me choosing not to choose, which is also a decision.
When I do feel that I want something or know what I want in response to a choice, sometimes it is almost a relief. I’m sick of the apathy implied in saying I don’t know, even to just myself.
I need to get better at understanding how I feel and how things make me feel. I’m in a weird in between time in which I don’t know what my future work life will be or what I’ll be doing in six months. But figuring out what I like or that makes me feel good will inform those decisions.
I am trying to note what makes me feel happy in my current work and what does not. I am trying to figure out what to do with down time on my own. What do I like doing in my free time (that’s not reading)? Should I try new things? Maybe I’ll like some of them.
I’m working on listing out what I like or feel good doing in my free time too. From there, I can build on it.
And I will have this list when I feel down or exhausted or frustrated—particularly about my limits. If I can’t work out that day to relieve adrenaline? What else can I do? Maybe I can’t do anything, or maybe I have a store of smaller activities or practices I can turn to instead, like writing the blog!
Hopefully, this will also mean that I will be better at gauging when I honestly don’t want to do something and can say no to that in the moment, instead of spending time dithering about my decision before eventually saying no or yes last minute.
To be able to privilege the important or to say no to the unimportant, I need to know what is important to me! Then and only then can I take the advice to say no politely and firmly immediately when I can’t or don’t want to do something!
I’m going to try my best to give myself patience and really begin to make decisions—to not procrastinate forever (that too is a kind of decision)—but to give myself time to feel what I want and need and decide from there.
It will take time to relearn or learn anew what I want and need. I may not want what I used to—and probably don’t! I need to learn instead of just getting anxious about having to make more decisions. Hopefully, accumulating little ones will help me with the bigger ones.
I will start my list of things and activities that make me feel good here and maybe help inspire others to do so too if you are also struggling with decision fatigue or indecision!
- Writing about my experiences with anxiety, OCD, scoliosis, and migraines.
- Reading fiction
- Reading other blogs
- Drinking tea
- Tidying and cleaning up (yes, I’m a little unique, but it really helps my anxiety to do it and then have it done!)
- Lingering over meals
- Listening to music while I cook or do chores
- Spending time with a friend one on one