Dear, guys – welcome back to Letters From Liz!
We all struggle with something in our lives. I don’t know why but that opening sentence reminded me of a shitty opening universal message statement used in academic essays in college.
Anyway, I still mean it: we all wish there was a solution to master and conquer that one thing that we struggle within our lives. If it’s keeping friends, being assertive, remembering important times, whatever it may be. Some of them are easily manageable and may only affect a small part of your life, and others are not so lucky. Those struggles require some professional assistance, or what I like to call: therapy.
Although I keep in mind that therapy isn’t going to solve all of my issues, it does provide a time and place to discuss those issues. As I been to therapy in the past year a lot of the issues I have become less stressful, but there are still some things that no matter how many times I talk about it and try to do the opposite of what I’m doing, I still find myself subconsciously doing it.
The one thing I struggle with the most is the need to seek approval from those around me.
From talking things out and observing them myself for the past year, I’ve realized that it’s been tough for me to be assertive with myself and to be okay with putting myself as a priority. Although I feel like I’ve been doing good with assertiveness, I still feel like all that hard work falls apart when I’m anxious about someone’s approval. In other words, I’m still very afraid to make my own major decisions, and would most likely make them if I feel like they are the right thing to do and if other people approve of them, which yeah, it’s ridiculous, but I just seem to have trouble shaking that thing off.
Maybe it’s the perfectionist in me or just my lack of confidence in myself when making decisions, but whenever I feel like I’m making a bad decision with something, I automatically have to run and tell someone to convince me that I’m making a bad decision, as if my own judgment isn’t enough.
Although I’ve written posts and posts about how you shouldn’t seek approval, it’s still easier said than done. I’m finding different approaches to tackling this issue of mine, and as I sit here writing this, I haven’t found something that helps me stop seeking approval.
Because this is the thing: my anxiety is a bitch, and she tries as hard as possible for me to second-guess everything in my life, and although I make a decision that is best for me at the moment, she doesn’t allow me to be completely okay with my decision until someone reassures me that it’s okay. She doesn’t allow me to be assertive enough to the point where I can respect other people’s wishes, yet still, respect my own.
Will I ever break out of this cycle? Maybe one day, but I think I have to do some more growing up in order to finally feel like I can listen to my own voice without others influencing it.
What’s one thing you find yourself struggling with?