Friday, August 2, 2019

What it’s Like to be an Extreme Planner with Anxiety

Stephanie Kamp Blog: What it’s Like to be an Extreme Planner with Anxiety

So one thing that I do is plan. Like a lot! I like to plan pretty much everything. I like to plan my day out, I like to plan my week out, and sometimes even a year or two in advanced. I also have anxiety. I've never been on medication or anything for my anxiety. It's a personal choice. I'd rather figure out how to deal with it on my own. I've been to therapy once for it and it also wasn't really my thing. I've had anxiety since I was a child but I'll probably talk more about that in a different post. I'm currently struggling with having anxiety because I plan too much but then when I'm not planning anything, I get anxiety. So I'm currently stuck in an endless cycle and I'm trying to figure out how to get out of it.

It’s kind of ironic that I'm such a huge planner because I actually hate using planners. I buy one typically every year but I never use it. My thing is to have a lined notebook where I can write down things in a more detailed manner. When I was in college I would literally schedule every hour of my day. I would wake up at 7, eat breakfast, sit down at my desk and write down my plans for the day so I could cross them off as I went along. I didn’t always follow my plans exactly, sometimes I would switch things around or the timing wouldn’t work out or something else so I would scratch that list and create a new one with the remaining hours left in the day. Now that I’m working it’s kind of hard to do that because I can’t really do that with my work since I basically just work off of a bunch of random task lists and I can't schedule them out. I mean I can but I can't really because some of them only take like 5 minutes to work on and some of them take like 2 hours to work on, it just depends on how much there is on each task list. So I do really miss that kind of structure and I definitely think that it would help with my anxiety but at the same time it might make it worse. 

So what I mean by extreme planner, is that currently when I plan something out that’s for my future I take into consideration my future kids that don’t even exist yet and probably won’t exist for a while. I think of basically everything and when I feel like it’s not really going to work out the way I want it to, I tend to get really bad anxiety! Sometimes I even plan out to the very tiniest detail and again if something doesn’t work out then I get really bad anxiety or I tend to get upset. I’ve pretty much been this way my whole life, which is another reason why I chose not to participate in a lot of activities growing up. I think even as a kid I knew things weren’t going to go how I wanted/planned them to go so I would just opt out and say no thank you! For me it’s easier to say no and walk away from a situation than to let myself be let down. There’s nothing I hate more than being disappointed, especially when it comes to myself. 

As hard as some of the classes were that I took in school, school was always easy for me because it was a routine. All I had to do was go to class, study the material and then pass the class. I didn’t always get an A but for a lot of my classes I didn’t really care. As long as if I got a B I would be good because deep down I knew the material didn’t really matter for real life, especially for high school. For college, I’ve used a few things that I learned but not much really! I think you don’t really start to learn the material for real life until you get into a masters program. That's when you're really able to dive in deep and learn more in-depth stuff.

The other reason I don’t plan out my day as much now that I’m a working adult is because when I get home from work, which is usually right before 5, all I want to do is sit on the couch and relax. I don’t want to get up and do work around the house. I’ve been at work for 9 hours and haven't been home in almost 10 hours because of my driving and I just want to relax! I want to be lazy! The only time I really ever do anything is on Friday nights and on the weekends. I mean I usually do stuff during the week but it’s a struggle to get up and get the motivation to actually do them. Like for example, writing this blog! I love writing my blog and I love coming up with new ideas and topics to talk about but I seriously lack the motivation to actually sit down and write it. I lack the energy to think about what I’m going to say. I’ve been using my brain constantly all day and all I want to do is not think! I try to catch up with things on the weekend but sometimes I’m so busy playing catch up that it’s hard to get things done that I actually want to get done!

And since I’m such a huge planner when I was younger I pretty much planned out my whole life, boyfriend by like 22 or 23, married with my masters by 25, and having kids and possibly my doctorate by 30! So far I’ve only accomplished 1 of those things! And I’m about to turn 26! So currently I’ve been feeling a little disappointed in myself for not following through on my plans. Granted some of them aren’t really up to me but other ones were. To be honest, life isn't really up to any of us. You can make a choice but it doesn't really mean that it's going to turn out the way you want it to. Your story is written by God and only he knows what will happen in your life.

I’m working really hard on telling myself everyday to just let life happen and enjoy every moment but I honestly think it’s going to take a really long time for me to stop feeling the way I do about planning out life. I've also been working on trying to catch myself when my brain goes off the deep end and starts thinking and planning things out. I have to tell myself to stop, to relax, and think about something else. I try to think about what I'm currently working on and sometimes I'll think of something to talk to my coworkers about so I can get my mind off of things. They all know that I'm huge planner, they tell me all the time so they probably have figured out that's why I talk so much at work haha!

I'm basically stuck because planning my life gives me anxiety but not planning my life gives me anxiety. I wish there was a happy medium between the two but so far I haven't been able to find it. I also wish I could care a little less about the future but I just want to make sure that I'm living life to it's fullest potential and that I take advantage of every opportunity. I feel like if you don't plan then you will miss out on a lot of things or you'll end up regretting how something turned out. I hope some people can relate to this post and if not I hope it didn't depress anyone haha!

Thanks for stopping by!
XO, Steph

1 comment :

  1. Don't be disappointed in yourself! Life never turns out exactly how you planned it would! There are always things that happen that you like or didn't like but mostly didn't expect! You are working towards your goals and that's all that matters:). You could still have kids by 30! You could instead realign your goals and try to get your masters by 30 too!

    Everyone struggles with feeling like they aren't doing enough and comparing themselves to others. Even the person who you think has their life 100% together still feels like a mess most of the time!

    It sucks that your anxiety is so hard on you:(. I hope you can find a happy medium or at least something that decreases it.

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Thank you so much for leaving a comment! I love talking with you guys and getting to know you better! If you leave a question I will most definitely try to answer it! XO, Steph