For the longest time, I thought I was borderline anti-social. The more I learn about myself, the more I realize my desire for peace and quiet has less to do with a dislike for mankind and more to do with protecting my raging people-pleaser mentality.
I can tool around the house for days without even realizing the outside world exists. No TV necessary. My internet connection and a good book are plenty to keep me occupied.
The last time hubby took the kids on a weekend road trip without me? The TV never came on. Not once. (Hubby found this to be an astounding behavior. Something akin to males giving birth.)
Even without technology I can flow from one self-directed project to another and be comfortable in my own skin. In my pre-kid days, I’d been known to rearrange the furniture just for fun. Of course, I was poor then. Before I clawed my way up to middle class, rearranging what you had was the only option for “updating” your space.
Now? Those moments of quiet are like the Godiva chocolate bars I stash behind the dictionary on my bookshelf. (Shhh. Don’t tell the kids where I put ’em.)
What’s really sad? Those bits of P&Q are usually followed by tremendous, post-indulgence guilt. Kind of like said candy bars after you scarf one down.
It wasn’t until I talked out my guilt with hubby last week that I figured out WHY those quiet times are so special: If no one’s there, there’s no one to please but me.
When I get up in the morning, the first thing my brain does is scan the immediate perimeter for all humans and pets requiring attention and kicks out a laundry list of chores for completion by nightfall.
Maybe this is the natural progression of adulthood? Or maybe some of us are just more prone to people-pleasing, list developing behavior? Whatever the case, it’s grown harder and harder for me to, “make the list.”
Yes, I’m aware this discussion brings up a whole different set of issues worthy of therapy. My friends and family will attest that I’m chock full of all manner of interesting quirks. Frankly, I’d die without them to keep me (sort of) sane.
Still, I wanted to lay by biz out there and learn from the rest of you. How do you protect yourself from pleasing everyone from your family to the postman?
Do you make the list?