I don’t need to punish myself anymore.

I stopped smoking back in April, which was easy. I stopped sugar/flour/snacking in July. Also relatively easy. I stopped drinking 3 weeks ago. Also not that hard.

But this week, man. I have been going through it. Intense, intense anxiety.
Chronic anxiety is the reason I’ve been seeking help via therapy, self-help, and you. I have had high blood pressure since I was in my early twenties, which I now know is directly linked to my anxiety. Anxiety is literally threatening my life. What a wake-up call.

And then I finally made the connection that 99% of the thoughts running in my head at all times were causing me to feel fear, panic, and not enough. I’ve been in SCS since May and working on myself for a lot longer and I JUST realized how unconscious most of my thinking still is (thanks to Rachel Hart’s latest podcast “Be Where You Are” for being the tipping point in this realization).

And this morning, I had a profound realization about where this anxiety comes from.
This “gotta hurry, gotta do this as fast i can, gotta do more than everyone else, gotta work harder, i can’t rest until everything is done perfectly” soundtrack that has been running every second of my life, is me trying to atone for a shameful past.

I connected with how unworthy I felt pretty much since middle school. I sobbed pretty hard.

I’ve been punishing myself brutally ever since. Trying to atone for all that I wasn’t, all that my family wasn’t, how little we had, how ugly I was, how I cheated in school, how unathletic I was, how socially incompetent, how I never had boyfriends, how I was always supposed to be pleasant never angry never sad, etc. etc. the only thing I was “good” at was school but even that was false, if they ever found out.

But I see now that I have to let that child go. That child was given a set of circumstances and she did her best.
There is nothing to atone for. There never was. I was always just a worthy human, like everyone else.

I don’t need to punish myself anymore.

Now the work of coming back 1000x from this stronghold of thoughts.

Oh and, this thought came up today: This anxiety, it’s my path to freedom. I see that now. If life had been easy, where would I be?

I didn’t want to take the time to post this but I think about how much I’ve benefitted from others sharing, and what seems like your limitless giving, and I thought if my experience helps one other person, that is enough.