Hi. It’s Jenny at AnxietyBoss.com. Our question today is from David in Jaffrey, New Hampshire. I always so “no” to myself for great pleasurable activities because I feel I should be doing more responsible things. This anxiety is bothering me. What do I do about it?
Are you feeling guilt or anxiety? Guilt can result from neglecting responsibilities, while anxiety can result from thinking of incomplete work that needs to be tended to while you’re playing. Being an adult means being responsible and delaying gratification to get the job done, so sometimes you have to say “no” to fun activities.
But step back and take a look at the big picture. There are going to be periods of time in your life that could last days, weeks or even months where you have to crank activity levels to maximum working, 12-hour days or more every day, running to appointments and meetings, planning, discussing, and passing out in your bed at night rather than actually falling asleep.
Sometimes if you want to be successful or reach your goals, this is what’s required. Your quality of life will suffer in many ways during this time, and you will be subjected to great stress. You have to decide if this is worth it or not in reaching your goals.
After one of these periods, it’s time to reset and dial your activity level down for a while. Take a well-earned break for days, weeks, maybe months, if you can afford to. Think of fun activities as a reward or a payment to yourself that you have earned or combine the two whenever possible. When traveling on business, try to book a local restaurant, take some photos, keep a travel journal, and do some exploring. Find a balance between work and fun.