• nsughaiyer

When Doing Good Harms Us

Updated: Jan 20, 2019

Photo by Ehimetalor Unuabona

Yesterday, I was looking through old photos of myself, and I noticed how different I looked. I was full of energy and life.

But now, I can hardly drag myself out of bed.

My breaths are short.

My face is pale.

And a few white strands are starting to stand out from the rest of my hair.

Those photos were only one-year-old!

Only one question was present in my head.

What the hell happened to me?

It’s time to admit it…

I am deeply exhausted, both physically and emotionally. Sometimes, I feel that I’m making my way on the verge of collapse. Even my lungs have been complaining about difficulties in breathing well.

In the last twelve months, I have dedicated my days to the mission of supporting youth, and my nights to my passion for theatre and improvisation.

These long days and long nights have served me well spiritually and mentally at the expense of my physical and emotional well-being.

This obsession with devoting myself to what I love has left me drained.

Two years ago, I consciously raised my mission and passion above all other priorities, including my social life and health. I knew the consequences, but I went ahead, regardless.

Now, I am reaping the fruits of my decisions, both the sweet and the sour.

The truth is…

I don’t believe in balance.

I don’t believe that we can have it all.

The very nature of life is not designed for us to win it all.

Our time, energy, and resources are limited.

While our desires, expectations, and potential are not.

That’s where things clash!

And that’s exactly when we have to make tough choices of giving up one priority to achieve another.

Choices that are not necessarily correct, maybe just optimal.

Choices of our “Own”.

As long as we are making our own choices, we can always undo them without guilt, without regret. We can always realign our priorities.

It’s the choices that are imposed on us, that end up haunting us and feeding us regret and guilt.

It is true that our choices may not be the best. It is true that they may hurt us in different aspects of our lives, in both expected and unexpected ways.

But at least we won’t have any regrets. There won’t be moments of dwelling on endless “What if”s.

Because we knew it all along.

Right now, I have no regrets whatsoever.

I am changing my choices and giving myself more time to slow down and heal. I am realigning my priorities.

Giving up a few things in exchange for other things.

Removing some Lego pieces and adding colourful others instead.

I am fully acknowledging the “clash”,

Completely accepting the tradeoff of life.

And I will happily not have it all.

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