I’ve been putting off this post for months. Mainly because I hate sounding whiney and self-indulgent – particularly when I very often feel so lucky for the things I have around me. With a great place to live, a good job and more than enough wonderful people in my life, I often feel guilty for thinking that my life is anything other than A-OK. Still, this point is an important one, and while I’m going to try my best not to sound like one of those many ‘life as a millennial is shit’ columns in a women’s magazine, here goes…
I recently saw something on Instagram that described me perfectly. “My brain has too many tabs open”, it read. I’m sure many can relate to the never-ending whirl of thoughts that occur daily. There’s the small things – have I remembered to switch off the oven? Did I submit my electricity reading in time? Is there enough petrol in my car to take me to work? Should I really be eating this?
On top of that are the medium-sized worries, the kind you might be able to control if you tried hard enough. They are sort of folded up in the back of your brain, constantly reminding you of the things you might forget. Things like worrying that you haven’t caught up with a friend in a while, or the niggling feeling that you’ve got a birthday present to buy, or a social occasion to budget for. There is the constant ‘checking’ of various facts and figures too – your bank balance, your weight on the scales, how many steps you’ve done in a day, how long your journey might take from home if you dodged the traffic or caught the right train.
Then, ultimately, are the bigger worries. If you’re a more laid-back person than me, these might not even cross your mind – in which case, keep on the road you’re on! For those inclined to stress about anything, these thoughts can range from house prices and university debt to the names of your unborn children.
Lately, I’ve been feeling like there are far too many tabs open in my brain. Juggling a full-time job with a part-time freelance career, saving up for a house and planning a wedding is starting to take its toll and I’m very often found feeling exhausted. In an effort to ensure I don’t miss out on anything, my holiday allowance is being used on whirlwind city breaks, friend’s weddings and family gatherings. That’s not to mention the guilt I feel of having a gym membership card gathering dust in my wallet.
I guess what I’m looking for is a chance to enjoy the simple side of life, instead of constantly aiming for something. I want to be able to sit back and relax without the feeling that I have to be productive or ‘making the most’ of it all. I want to be able to feel fulfilled without getting all my work done, running five miles and reaching my monthly savings goal. I might not be very good at closing down all the tabs in my brain, but I’m definitely going to try and make them fewer. Sometimes just giving a little bit of yourself is enough.