I'm a good person, I care for others... I have no doubt that most of you readers are like myself and always want to try your hardest and do your best to please other people. It seems to be in my blood to want to help others - I do that in my role as a frontline receptionist and it's a big reason as to why I am becoming a teacher. It plays a part in my christian faith as well, I want what I do in this life to matter... I want to make positive differences in people's lives while I can.
The problem is when this gets out of hand. I'm a sucker for a plea and a large pair of puppy dog eyes. I overcommit myself and I'd never cancel out on something I had promised to do without feeling overwhelming pangs of guilt. I almost rostered myself on my birthday weekend at work! An old school friend is getting married in our gardens... we're not that close, I'm not invited to her wedding or anything, but she came in this morning to pay her deposit for her wedding at the end of this month. She asked if I was working that weekend, because that would be fantastic if I was. Wistfully implying it would be fantastic if they could deal with me rather than someone that they don't know. I could hear the words coming out of my mouth "Well, I can see if I can..." HALT mouth HALT. I said, with a huge amount of effort "...actually I can't work that day. I have uni the following Monday and I'll have a lot to get organised." Not to mention that it is my birthday weekend... what prevents me from just saying "No" with a regretful shake of the head?
I put aside time to work, yet feel guilty when I can't work late/work a shift that the boss can't find cover for. I put aside time for study, yet feel guilty when I'm out on the town knowing that my assignment still needs to be completed. I hate hate hate when I have to choose between church stuff and friends stuff because both are equally important to me. I perpetually feel like I'm failing someone - at the moment, my church/work/social lives are so hectic that I really feel like I'm letting down my parents at the home front.
I choose this day, this moment to confess my feelings and to make a vow to stop feeling so bad, to stop being so apologetic if I can't do something. I'm challenging myself to say no if it really is inconvenient to me. Are you stuck in the same cycle when maybe you aren't being selfish enough? Let me know in the comments and make the pledge!