Date: 2017-01-23 11:18 pm (UTC)
recessional: bare-footed person in jeans walks on log (Default)
From: [personal profile] recessional
I actually spent a significant amount of time training myself to stop doing a thing if it's actually miserable, and there's not going to be consequences for dropping it.

There's enough stuff in my life that is constantly miserable, that will probably never stop being miserable, and that I will keep having to fight and struggle through very potentially as long as I live. I was also hardcore indoctrinated with the Gifted Kid "you should be able to do anything, if you CAN'T do it you're just not TRYING hard enough, if you stop trying you're GIVING UP, and GIVING UP means you're LAZY and UNDISCIPLINED". Combining that with my major depression nearly killed me, literally, more than once.

So I've actually made it a hardcore thing for myself: if I'm not enjoying it, if I'm miserable, and if what I'm going to get out of it is not worth this misery, I need to quit. That even if something at the end is something I really want, I am allowed to go "but do I want it that much?" And I'm allowed to say no, and go home and read a book instead.

Now like I've got qualifiers in there, which include "actually miserable." Because there's stuff that's kind of . . .technically miserable? Which are at the same time actually massively rewarding at the same time as it's miserable, and that's not going to make me quit. Writing, for example, falls under this category for me: the experience of writing is, for many reasons, more or less for me like the equivalent of some kind of horrible marathon, but at the same time as it's horrible, it's IMPORTANT or it's rewarding me in some other way that's incredibly important, and those I'll keep going until I'm dead.

And there's stuff I fucking hate that will AFTER IT'S OVER give me something that is in fact that rewarding so that the misery is worth it, and the answer to that question of "is this worth it" turns out to be "yes". (See also: school.)

But if it's actually miserable, the question of "is this worth it" is allowed to be "no". Which is actually still very hard for me.
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