Are you in GO mode?
A friend said the most eye-opening thing to me the other week: “You’re in GO mode.” My husband and I have been helping one of our best friends with his new business. And whereas my husband approaches this business with maximum chill, I have it on my mind almost all the time. I think about photos I can take for Instagram and marketing ideas to help him build his brand. I took our quarterly business meeting VERY seriously. Meanwhile, my husband was literally laying on a table interjecting with his ideas for where we should eat after the meeting (Oui Bahn Mi won out).
Later, when I was eye-rolling about my husband’s nonchalance toward our business discussions, my friend told me I was in “go mode.” That stuck with me hard. I was in go mode, and I was in it ALL THE TIME.
I know why: I started my own business this year. I’ve worked my ass off for the past 6 months to build my private practice and get things off the ground. So when our friend asked us to help out with his business too, it felt natural to pile on more responsibility. Plus I enjoyed it.
I liked making progress in my business, writing blogs, networking, Instagramming, and making big business goals. Girl Boss is my default setting. But I did forget how f*cking tiring it is to pursue your goals this hard.
I forgot because I was having fun and living out my values. But fun and values don't mean my body stops requiring rest. My introverted-self was starved for quiet alone time. After months of feeling like there was always more for me to do, I needed to feel like I’d hit a temporary stopping place. A place in which I could relax without feeling the “you could be working right now” pressure.
Crashing is inevitable
I’d love to say I made some mindful choice about stepping away from my perfectionism and achieving calm. But in reality, I think my mind just crashed.
I don’t know when, but at some point in the last two months, I stopped feeling intense pressure to work harder. My social media posts, blog writing, and networking efforts all paused. It wasn’t intentional. I just… stopped doing those things for a while.
Clearly, I’m back at it now. However, it’s with far less hypomanic energy than before. My innate self-criticism wants to make me feel bad about my abrupt hiatus. I get thoughts like, “it was irresponsible to stop blogging and posting. You should never let it happen again.” But I know that thought isn’t helpful because it totally will happen again.
I’m not always going to be hyper-productive. That has to be OK. I’ve so enjoyed the mental break from go-mode, so I fully intend to take it whenever I need. And I encourage you to do the same.
Whether it’s your work, your recovery, or your hobby, please ask yourself if you need a break. You can wear yourself out even when you’re doing something positive for your life. So please: if you feel worn out, make the mindful choice I forgot about. Step away from your perfectionism (even if it’s helpful), and enjoy some calm.