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January 1st, 2015

shadesong: (Figuring shit out)
Thursday, January 1st, 2015 03:49 pm
I've talked about 2014 being my Year of Being Brave; I need to write a good wrapup post on that! And the Year of Being Brave has changed my life. Brave every year from now on. :)

But I did something else, something more subtle, something I didn't talk about as much:

2014 was the year I stopped calling myself lazy.

It used to be a tired old call-and-response thing - "I don't/didn't do X, because I'm lazy." And people would say "You're not lazy!"

And I realized that this was true. It helped that people pointed out that wow, I actually do a lot of stuff. Scroll down to my Year in Shira writing/editing post, and that's just one aspect of my life. I am driven and efficient and I do a lot of things and I do them well! So why do I call myself lazy?

The best answer I have? Part internalized ableism (I don't have a day job because disability, so clearly I am lazy) and part internalized misogyny (I don't do a lot of Lady Upkeep things, so clearly I am lazy).

Neither of those is a good look.

So in 2014, I looked at that, and I asked myself "why am I not doing the things I'm not doing?"

And the actual answer was "Because I have limited time and energy, and that's not where I choose to allocate it."

Boom.

It seems simple, but that reframing helped immensely. Talking about hair dye? "I don't dye my hair even though I could because I'm lazy" becomes "I don't dye my hair because upkeep on that takes time and energy that I'd rather spend elsewhere." I'd like rainbow hair, but I like what I'm doing more. Maybe I'll get some clip-in rainbow extensions from Etsy.

"I didn't clean the house, god I'm lazy" becomes "I was really in the zone with my writing, and this novel is more important to me than my toilet bowl being spotless."

These are all choices. Time/energy choices. When I say "lazy", I'm not just disrespecting myself, I'm devaluing the totally valid choices that I've made, that I'm making.

Plus it is just not true.

So that is my challenge to you for 2015. What negative thing do you say to yourself about yourself? What story are you telling yourself that isn't true or fair to you? Find it. Nuke it from orbit.

"Be very careful how you talk to yourself. Because you are listening." - Pat Cadigan