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Multiplicity

Jettisoning others' baggage

Only have the vaguest of notions of how I want 2008 to be different from 2007. There are, of course, some practices I'd like to adopt (and others I ought to abandon), but nothing so firm as a resolution. Mostly, I want to exercise more freedom from other people's stuff—their gripes, their stresses, their insecurities, their flakiness, etc.

Even though I tend toward independence, I'm realizing I've also been adopting others' stuff into my life in a lot of unhealthy ways. It's the equivalent of being constantly interrupted on an emotional level, and I need to be more discerning in where/with whom I'm allowing that to occur. Otherwise I'm spending a lot of my time and energy reacting, which is often a very different thing from loving or caring (the things I'm called to do with the people in my life). It would, of course, be horribly self-important to assume I have the right to a life free of interruption; I just don't want to be a rotten steward of the (often limited) supply of time and energy I've been given.

Now, I've no clear idea how to do this beyond simply doing it—recognizing that others' stuff doesn't require a response from me. If I don't strive to live in greater recognition of this, I'll continue to find myself frazzled by things that don't matter and drained of resources that need to be invested in the people who do matter to me. The cycles and distinctions may not make much sense outside of my head, and that threatens to stress me out—a great example of what I need to walk free of. It really doesn't matter if anyone else gets it.

Comments

I could have written this word for word.
Glad it's not just me. It's such a hard problem to articulate; even in this entry I'm afraid it sounds too much like other people are doing things wrong when that's not really the case (or the issue). It's so much more about me taking things on and trying to respond more than is healthy for anyone.
No, I totally understood. Adding to this issues, I also have the whole "if I don't do it FOR them, then the end result will be crap". And so I end up with all of these projects on my plate that I just don't have the time to take on. Couple that with the relationship things and I'm just screwed. :|
Yup. And seriously, most of the time all I have to is remember that it's not my stuff and things snap back into perspective.
That doesn't work for me. Especially with church things. I see a need that someone is only half-heartedly fulfilling (or that they're trying really hard, but still doing it wrong) and all it takes is one glance my way and I feel like I have to hop on board and fix it. Productions, graphics, websites... whatever it is that's creatively handled. I'm SERIOUSLY the only person in our church who can be creative in the way certain things need. I know that sounds haughty, but it's the truth. What needs to happen is that I need to stop caring if it's done in a less than appealing way. But it's SO hard to do!!!
Hmmm, that's a new perspective on it. I have to think about it a bit more because it would probably apply to me too.
It's definitely helping me (at least in the short term) to remember that I don't own others' stuff. Somewhere in my head, I've been jumping to try to accommodate people and fix things when I'm really not being asked to do either, then getting frustrated when I can't get it done.