When I was in high school and college, I was one of those people who got all A’s without even trying. In high school, I’d rush to do my homework during the 15-minute homeroom period and inevitably score 100 on the test, while classmates wondered why they couldn’t get a B when they’d studied for hours the night before. I remember watching my college roommate spend hours poring over her textbooks; I’d spend about an hour a week and only ran into one course throughout my college career that forced me to actually schedule time to study [It was Economics, which I hated!].
I’m not saying this to suggest that I’m a genius; I simply believed I was good at ‘school’ and I believed that it was possible to be successful in school without spending a lot of time working.
Fast-forward to my twenties and thirties when I started to work as a journalist and writer. Somewhere along the line my belief system changed. Somehow, I learned that you had to work hard in order to be successful and anything of value had to be born if not of blood, of sweat and tears. While that may sound good, the only thing it did was make my life a lot more difficult and less enjoyable.
If I finished something quickly, I found myself looking for something else to add to it since I had not spent enough time on the project. Or I’d waste time transcribing portions of interviews that I knew I wasn’t going to use, telling myself that I needed to do this to be thorough. Over time, the only thing I gained from adding all of this extra time to my tasks was stress and a feeling of being overwhelmed with work. After dealing with a couple of deadline-induced anxiety attacks, I knew it was time for me to make a change.
So I’m going back to my childhood and looking to recapture my older beliefs since it’s obvious that the little me had a lot more wisdom than the current iteration. I understood then that if I expected something to be easy it likely would be easier than if I went into a situation looking for ways to make it complicated and difficult.
What are some beliefs that served you well as a child? Do you still value them today? If not, there’s no better time than now for getting back in touch with your metaphysical roots.