Read this when you feel like: You’re not “doing enough”

STEEPED BY SAMIA #6 | 9.30.22
Sometimes, things feel up in the air and a little off in every part of your life.

My goal was to put out two blog posts this month. The Reality: my Notes app is littered with sparse attempts at interesting ideas (you’ll see them someday, I promise!). So, I decided to write an end-of-month reflection for my second post and just see where it goes. Excitingg.

September went by in a meandering way. I can tell you that things are a lot calmer now than they’ve been since April. My dad has been home from the hospital for almost a month now, and he’s nearing 60 days since his bone marrow transplant (!!). This month, I worked on some exciting copywriting projects, spent time helping my dad with his recovery (which includes watching the new Lord of the Rings TV show; 9 out of 10, v fun), and caught up with friends.

I consumed & pored* over every bit of writing that I’m curious about.

Memoirs, literary fiction, essay collections, interviews, newsletters, articles. I call it “my makeshift MFA” (minus the essays, grades, and tuition money!). I revisited prolific writers I read in college: Toni Morrison, Barbara Kingsolver, Audre Lorde, George Saunders, and more.

I’m learning what it looks like to show up for my writing. I’m proud that most days, I wake up feeling intrigued by writing. I deconstruct ideas into word dumps and bullet notes and turn them over & over in my mind. I read Substacks and interviews about people’s journeys and processes with writing. I go on walks and listen to podcasts, jotting down phrases in my Notes app with a satisfied smile (i.e. A couple of days ago, I simply wrote the word “zeitgeist,” lol).

*I just learned that “pore over” is the correct usage in this context, not “pour over”, wow~

This month, I was ready to jump back into my goals and explore the question of: “So, What’s Next?”

But things were…off. I felt like I wasn’t “doing enough” in different areas of my life; whether it was my career exploration + freelancing, self-care + personal growth, friends/family, supporting my dad in his recovery process, my writing, silly little household chores, etc.

That sinking thought would creep in: I’m trying to do these things every day, but it feels like I’ve made very little progress with any of them.

“That’s not true, Samia!” I would tell myself. “You’re doing what’s in your capacity.” Along with a flurry of realizations:

  1. Everyone feels this, in one way or another, and no one has everything together.
  2. Our perceptions of our own selves differ from how others see us.
  3. “Doing enough” doesn’t really mean anything.
  4. Life, itself, isn’t meant to be broken into pieces and measured for efficacy.
  5. And, ultimately, all of this folds into arbitrary expectations of adulthood and capitalism and timelines.

Maybe I’m not ready. I was processing and coming to terms with a lot of emotions and experiences. I was tired. Depleted. So, I took a lot of naps and watched a lot of TV, lol. There were also days where I centered just being present and doing what felt right in the moment. I can tell you now that I feel a lot more lighter and hopeful.

Recently, I started checking in with myself in a new way, and I wanted to share this with you:

  • Q: Right now, how am I feeling? | A: Okay / Not okay / IDK.
  • Q: Baseline, how am I doing? | A: Okay / Not okay / IDK.

The “baseline” refers to how we experience life in chunks of time, seasons, and moods. Right now and baseline, I’d answer, “Okay!” to both of these questions!! As we move into October, the theme I’m carrying with me is: Show Up & Embrace Life In Flux. —S.A.


Steep On This:  


Catch Up:  

9.15.22 | The harvest festival & the power of make-believe

STEEPED BY SAMIA #5: My backyard slipped away, as the world of the harvest festival took shape.


About This Blog:

Steeped by Samia is a space where I can simmer on thoughts & curiosities in the scope of digital culture, creativity, life, & more. Far too often, my writing ideas fizzle out in energy; I never get to see them to their full potential. While building my rhythm with writing, I want to share these ideas with you. 

Stay Up-To-Date on my blog by clicking the ‘follow’ button at the bottom of the page, and you will receive an email every time I post. I aim to post a new installment at least once or twice a month. Thank you for supporting my storytelling! 🧡 

3 Comments

  1. nola says:

    So I was doing a leadership exercise recently where we write personal mission statements. One component was listing beliefs that we anchor ourselves to*. This can include values such as honesty or beliefs such as “healthcare is a human right.” One of the examples was the belief that “I am enough.” While the rest of the group finished their exercise quickly, I just sat and stared at “I am enough” and wondered if I could anchor myself to a belief that I don’t currently believe in but want to believe in. Anyways, I am just dropping by to say that your insight resonated with me (as always), and no matter what you define as enough for yourself, you continue to inspire and uplift those around you. So I hope that counts for something.

    *I apologize profusely to Samia and other real writers for the heretical way I concluded this sentence

    Like

    1. samiaabbasi says:

      Thanks so much for sharing this with me, wow :’))

      Like

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