Why Do we Feel Like we Have to Be “On” all the time?

September 7, 2018

The past few months have been a whirlwind of events.

I did an 4-month internship, finished it, wrote my Master 2 thesis, went to London, went to Spain, came back, finished my thesis, prepared for my oral defense, went back to Grenoble, did my oral defense and now I’m waiting for some news.

Though I was able to enjoy my summer break mostly – thank god I’m organized – I feel like my brain didn’t really shut off completely. I like to have a break from everything in the summer. Not think about school/work, not have any plans, not think about anything so that my mind can have a little break and not shut off completely.

But this year it was different. Though I was lucky to have a 5-week break after the end of my internship, it still meant that I had to finish to write my thesis which by then I was a bit annoyed about and I had to think about finding a job.

Because I was writing a lot and thinking a lot, my blog had to be put aside for a while. I was not feeling creative and a bit in a rut to be honest. I just decided to write whenever I felt inspired and not stick to my usual 3 post a week schedule.

I still felt bad though, like I was not working towards my goal and giving myself 100% to it. I was negative, felt like I was not good enough to grow my blog, my Instagram, that I could not achieve what I have in mind for the future, and so on and so forth.

It was as if, all at once, everything turned a dark shade of grey. I could not understand why I could not be “on” like other people who seem to manage everything so well. But that’s the keyword there isn’t it, “seem to”. Why do I need to feel like I have my sh** together all the time when I’m only human and sometimes, all is not fine. If I don’t feel like writing a blogpost, I shouldn’t feel obliged to because it will probably end up being bad and that doesn’t achieve anything. Same for Instagram, posting a photo I’m not excited to post will do nothing but make me feel bad every time I look at my profile.

We are so in a culture of “go go go, give it all and give your best 100% of the time” that now I’m 24 and feel a bit overrun. Like, I need a few months break of travelling and doing nothing to feel fresh and new again. We are expected to be perfect on all fronts and this is not okay. No, I can’t be on and perfectly driven all the time, I’m human, I have my down days and weeks before being able to feel better again. That’s just how it is.

I try not to be too harsh on myself when I feel a bit off, it’s just temporary, it doesn’t mean   I’m not fighting for my dreams, it means I’m taking care of myself to get where I want to be.

2 responses to “Why Do we Feel Like we Have to Be “On” all the time?”

  1. I agree – I always feel like I have to be ‘on’ and find it very hard to switch off. I often feel guilty if I’m just relaxing because my brain is telling me to do something more productive!

    -Charlotte / myownblogofthoughts.blogspot.com

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