I don’t know about you guys, but I am the worst when it comes to putting myself under pressure. This is the reason why I was so stressed out during my A-levels, because I was striving to be the best, and wanting the grades I so desperately needed to get out of my home town because I was so done there… and then things didn’t go how I wanted them to go. It didn’t make any sense to me, and it still doesn’t. I make myself work hard, and for what?
As you’ll all know now, I’m happy with how things (eventually) turned out, and I couldn’t be happier. I’ve never been in a position where I’ve been as stressed as I was a few short years ago, yet I still find I put myself under an immense pressure to do well- particularly academically.
I think it’s because at school, I felt all my friends were smarter than me, and I didn’t want to come across as being stupid, so I “had” to be “smart”. I think the same still applies for university- a lot of the time I won’t say much in my lectures because I don’t want to say the wrong thing and look like a fool, yet when I write essays this never comes across.
I want to talk particularly about my dissertation. I’ve been putting myself under so much pressure to get all my reading done by a certain week, and to have started writing something by a certain day, and when that doesn’t happen I feel so bummed that I just don’t want to do anything… and then I start putting off the work I should be doing, then I get stressed, and the whole cycle starts again.
I’ve always wanted to be good at everything I do- it’s the competitive thing I picked up from being in a swimming club for so long and competing in races on a regular basis. I never aspired to be the top swimmer in the world or the country, but I wanted to make myself and everyone else proud of my achievements… I guess I am proud of where I am and what I’ve done, so why do I still put pressure on myself to such an extent?
Once again this post doesn’t really have an end goal. It’s clearly not one of those “10 Top Tips to Handle Self Pressure” or whatever, because I don’t know how to handle it or deal with it and I don’t think it’s something that’s ever going to go away- and I also know that this isn’t a bad thing.
Although I get incredibly stressed, putting myself under pressure means I’m actually going to get something done, which is better than nothing, right? I just need to stop getting to the point where I start telling myself “I can’t do this”.
I think I’m going to end this post here, because I don’t really know what else to say. Let me know your thoughts, I’d love to continue this discussion in the comments!