The Chronicle of the Over Worker


“I don’t have an addictive personality or anything,” I told my therapist.

She eyed me warily. “But you sit here and tell me how much you work all the time, and how it’s all you want to do,” she said.

The words sunk in. They floated around my brain a little bit. I pondered it.

But I quickly dismissed it.

Somewhere along the line, I convinced myself that my success and professional achievement directly reflects my self-worth.

My career won’t ever wake up one morning and tell me it doesn’t love me.

My academic and professional successes won’t ever die.

I read a quote online the other day about having timelines in life. How you shouldn’t be worried if you’re not “successful” by 30 and if you haven’t reached other conventional “milestones” like getting married or having children by a certain age that you need to just trust the process.

It repulsed me.

I couldn’t fall for it. I couldn’t settle for less just because that’s the “process.”

See at the root of it all, I’m drowning in fear. I’m drowning in the fear of being average, of not being recognized for my achievements and the things that I can do. Of not being seen as worthy by others of love and acceptance.

Underneath the heavy bravado and the persistent urge to continue pushing forward at lightning speed, I’m scared, alone and looking for validation in any way possible. When authorities or anyone “above” me tell me I’m doing well, it boosts my fragile ego and confirms that I do deserve the successes I have.

I’ve been so out of sorts lately trying to understand why it just doesn’t feel good to be constantly “doing” like working on something school related, personal or work-related because all I know how to do is disassociate my feelings through working myself to the point of my creativity being completely diminished and my passion and fire being snuffed out.

I’ve been subconsciously coming to terms with the fact that busy does not equal balance, and having a lot to do does nothing to add to your self-worth, it only gives you less time to focus on nurturing yourself in the ways that you deserve, through activities you deserve.





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