Russian Girlfriend

Reading a couple of self-help books since Xmas has left me with much to think about.. I have to confess, I did get crabby a time or two whilst reading – cos I found myself nodding and going “omg that’s me!” 😉

One of the books that particularly fascinated me was on the theme of commitment phobes. Initially I thought “this is just silly, I love being in love.. I want to be in a relationship”. Til I read the book and it spelled out what (and why!) I was doing in my relationships.

But that is a topic for another day!

One critical thing I have identified about myself is the fact that I’m always in a hurry. Russian here, russian there ..

If anyone were to ask me, I’d honest to god say that I think I am calm, intelligent and frightfully well-grounded but then I find myself rushing here and there, always a little more busy than I perhaps should be .. And for what?

For habit, is what!

I was raised in a family where one never rested.. Being busy was king. Being quiet or resting was bad.. So I grew up thinking it was not ok to just sit back and enjoy things. I had to be busy, fussing around – in order to be “good” like my Mother.

Heck even if you were sick, you just sucked it up and kept on going.. stiff upper lip and all that twaddle.

The first time I became aware of this “issue” was many years ago when I was with someone who was so friggen laid back it nearly did my head in! .. but he did help me to look at my then very unhealthy “super-busy-rush-rush-can’t stop, too much to do” approach to life.

And thanks to his approach to life, I was able to slow down a little .. I forced myself to “chill”.

However, I acknowledge that I still tend to be constantly trying to be busy and since life is busy, without trying – that just ain’t sensible, I know!

But honestly, even whilst doing one thing I am guilty of thinking ahead .. planning my next move .. instead of just being IN the moment I’m in and enjoying or savouring it.

An example: I’m at the gym, it’s 7pm after a long (busy) day. Instead of stopping to take a long and leisurely shower in the very pleasant bathrooms there, I dive in / dive out and rush off to the next thing.. even if the next thing is just to step into the sauna for 20 minutes.. then of course I’m in the sauna and what do I do? I don’t lay back and relax. I sit and watch the timer cos I’ve gotta rush off and have another shower then go home and get changed and go out to dinner and come back and feed the cat and thaw some meat for dinner tomorrow and email x about lunch on Friday and and and .. yeah well, you get the picture..

So, this week I have actively reminded myself to try to take time to enjoy the entire experience .. of whatever it may be I am doing, as opposed to just wanting to ‘get it done’ so I can move onto the next thing.

Tuesday I had an hour long facial and hand massage.. normally I’d lay there and think about the rest of my day .. planning out what I need to do next. Instead, I lay there and zoned out. I listened to the music quietly playing in the background. I’m sure it’s always played (on other visits) but do you know, for the life of me I can’t recall ever hearing it.

And when the girl said to me “you can lay here and relax for awhile if you like, there’s no rush” once she was done, instead of leaping up and racing off like I normally would, I dozed quietly til she came back to see why the heck I was still there lol

At the gym today, I strolled around the changing rooms, I enjoyed a long hot shower. I washed my hair. I even dried it there. (Instead of just bunching it into a pony tail and rushing off as per normal) I lay in the sauna and didn’t open my eyes for as long as I could manage (baby steps, shaddup) and I tried to clear my mind of “what’s next”. It felt kinda neat, too..

But as I enjoyed doing this, I did find myself getting a little cross .. For the fact it’s taken me this long to get around to doing it 😉

I mean really, WHAT is so wrong with taking life slowly (obviously time and place comes to mind but far out – relax in the sauna, woman!) I dislike the expression ‘stop and smell the roses’ because I always do that already so figured I had it nailed .. but yeah, I’d still be rushing from one rose bush to the next, because I’m terribly busy don’t you know .. sigh ..

This approach to life has taken it’s toll on relationships too. Like I’ve said before, I tend to jump into a relationship 200%, way too quickly and then we’re all left reading tragic blog entries about why it’s not working out for me.

Well derrrrr!

And so it is, she makes a slightly late new year’s resolution:

I will make an effort to slow down. I will learn to relax. I will try to enjoy the moment rather than just get it done so I can move onto the next. And I will try to come to terms with the fact that as much as I’d like to control everything, I cannot and with this in mind – I will just try to enjoy ‘stuff’ as it unfolds.

Wish me luck, cos I suspectI’m gonna need it 😉

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Posted on February 16, 2012, in Happy-ness, Hope, Humour, Life, Love, Relationships and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 19 Comments.

  1. I learned this valuable lesson when I had a child. In the first week, every time she would fall asleep I would rush around like a crazy person trying to get the house cleaned up, her cloth diapers washed, her formula made, the laundry done, etc., etc., etc. After 10 days I looked like a zombie, no word of a lie. I was a single parent & my mom & dad came over for the day to “give me a break” & my mother nearly cried when she saw the bags & black circles under my eyes. My father took my daughter & my mother put me to bed. She sat for a couple minutes & we talked about how some things could wait a little (even though my mother was always an immaculate housekeeper). I took her lesson to heart & spent more time with my daughter enjoying her growing up (in a slightly dusty house from time to time).

  2. My New Year plan was to chill more. It’s a work in progress. Good luck!

  3. Sounds like an excellent plan, and good luck with that!

  4. Seems to me you simply are one of those folks with a lot of energy you need to burn off!

    • I spent over 90 mins a day at the gym, I should be a wreck damnit!
      *grin*

      I do LIKE being busy, and am high energy (hopefully not in that annoying “slap slap” kind way!) but yeah .. as per above, I just wanna get the most out of life not just the rushing bit 😉

  5. I’m soooo like you! I actually pace around my house at night, doing laundry, cleaning the kitchen or working on the computer. I was given a book called the Presence Process to teach me how to live in the present moment and I’m not done it with it because I’m reading two other books at the same time.

    And you’re so right — it is about control! I’m learning to try to slow down too. (raises her glass) Here’s to hoping that we can find a way to figure this out!

    • lmao @ reading too many books on self help!!!! That is so friggen funny!! I am going to request that book at the library too.

      I suspect we’re all ok with being busy and achieving things (I know I’m very driven in that way) but ideally, balancing it out with enjoying the peripheral stuff would be good huh.

      We can do it!

  6. Very awesome post. It’s hard to slow down some times, with society around us being in a rush all of the time, but it’s so worth doing. I have my blinds open for sunset every night, not just because they’re very beautiful, but it somehow encourages me to slow down a bit, savour the sunset for a little while. When I do that, I can almost feel me catching up with myself and actually being in that moment. Makes the sunset that much better, every time.

  7. I have the same problem. One thing I’ve learned to do is actually plan being a big, useless turd. As in: “Okay, tomorrow I will lay around and work my right thumb on the TV remote. Maybe I will read.”

    Somehow planning that shit makes it ok.

  8. Yes! I agree. Going to Yosemite now. Leaving the blog world to slow down.
    Great post.

  9. One day, you’re going to wake up, see it raining outside and go back to sleep.
    And on that day, we’ll be so very very proud of you!

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