Ryan and I were having an interesting talk on Friday over our holiday dinner and oddly, it came up again last night with some friends we were eating with.
Why, when everything seems to be going well, do some people suddenly get anxiety about life and grow concerned about whether or not their luck will run out?
For the record, I’m one of those people. I’ve worked extremely hard to get to where I am and my entire life I’ve literally just wanted to be normal. Come home, make dinner, clean my kitchen, go to bed at a reasonable time (I know, sounds desirable for everyone I’m sure). I wanted predictable – and only unpredictable when I do something spontaneous. That’s it.
I know for me it stems from a childhood of unpredictability and that’s where my desire for normalcy and repetition comes from in that regard, but what about everyone else?
A friend’s daughter is applying to med school, but she hasn’t gotten in yet. She’s worried her luck in life is running out and she won’t get in as a result. But why? You don’t get into med school because of luck, just like I didn’t get to where I am with luck either. It was hard work, dedication, lots of sweat and probably more tears than I’m willing to admit. It wasn’t luck. Nothing was handed to my friend’s daughter and it wasn’t handed to me either, so why do we feel this way?
For the record, I haven’t solved this. The somewhat intrusive thoughts I get about my concern that things are going to go awry soon stems likely from the thought that I’m in a phase where I am so happy, I almost feel like I don’t deserve it. Nothing is going particularly wrong, but everything is going my version of right and that feels good.
In these moments, we need to remind ourselves that we’re worthy of what we’re reaping. It’s great to be grateful (and I feel extremely grateful), but don’t like that move into feeling like you’re not worthy of what good things are going on in your life. Everyone is worthy of good things. Don’t be surprised when the work you do pays dividends in these areas and don’t shy away from it. Above all, don’t let these thoughts consume you.
Ironically, my phone broke yesterday so maybe that was my “bad thing” that was going to happen. Now maybe I can move past it and relax a little.