Posted by: Vicky | January 20, 2011

Stressed about absolutely nothing

I’m feeling very stressed and I know I’m doing it to myself. I’m such an idiot.

It’s not work that’s causing it, although work definitely had a hand in the build-up of all this stress. The whole department was on overtime for the second half of 2010 and while I didn’t do very much overtime (in Switzerland the number of hours I did in total would pretty much be a normal working week), I really felt the impact. I’m extremely glad it’s over now.

I had a good Christmas holiday in Switzerland, but it didn’t help at all with the stress. In fact, by the time I left I felt more stressed than before. I don’t know why I wind myself up so much. I felt like I should have been meeting up with more people, using my time more efficiently. But because I was stressing about it, I couldn’t face contacting people. I had a couple of relatively empty days, where I spent a lot of time with my sisters (which was fun and time well spent) but also too much time doing nothing other than reading and not enjoying it because I was worrying about not making the most of the time. So I felt more stressed and more unable to relax. FAIL.

Luckily, I’d taken the first day after my return from Switzerland off to recover from the journey. So I was able to calm down a bit before going back to work.

The time since I’ve been back has actually been lovely and stress free. No more overtime and I’ve taken a break from volleyball as I was feeling like I was being picked on by a few of my team mates and the coach (I’m sure they weren’t really, but I wasn’t happy there anymore).

So what am I getting stressed about?

Emails. Contacting people. Answering messages from friends and family.

I’ve lost track of the number of emails I should have answered. And the number of Facebook messages saying ‘It was great to see you over Christmas! Luv ya!’ Why couldn’t I just have written back immediately? ‘You too! Hugs and kisses!’ or some such.

Because I’m a perfectionist when it comes to written messages. I want to give each message the amount of time and attention to detail the recipient deserves. After all, if I don’t take the time to carefully craft each sentence, I might inadvertently hurt someone’s feelings or offend them…

So I put off answering until I have enough time to do it justice and the number of messages just keeps growing. Until I have what in my head looks like an insurmountable number of notes to write, and it seems pointless to even start.

It’s not that I don’t have time.

Or that I can’t be bothered.

Or that I don’t care.

I just can’t right now. Sorry.

I need to learn to let myself write quick, easy messages and not feel guilty or worry that it might be too short and so cause offense. Because seriously? Nobody takes offense that easily! And if they do, it’s their issue not mine.

I’m getting better at it. I wrote one an hour ago in response to a testy message from a volleyball team mate, saying hardly anyone had got back to her about a match date. I managed to send a short ‘Can’t make it, sorry. Vicky x.’ And I’m barely feeling guilty about it ;-)

Also, I managed to make the decision definitely not to continue with the online dating thing right now. The way I’m feeling at the moment, having to answer emails from random strangers really wasn’t an ideal activity to add to my life. So I forced myself to send a quick apologetic note to the Switzerland fan and am now feeling extremely relieved about that situation. One thing less to worry about.

I don’t like feeling stressed. The most annoying thing about it all is that I’m quite clearly doing it to myself! There’s no reason whatsoever why I should be beating myself up so much over something like this.

I’m not quite sure what to do about it. But counselling is looking better and better. If only I could get around to finding out how to go about getting some…



  1. I know what you mean about feeling overwhelmed by all the people who have been in touch with you over the holidays and who you now feel like you have to respond to! That happens to me too, and it’s nuts!

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