Grass Is Greener Syndrome
Conversations and Reflections + A lot of Brianna Wiest
Long time, no see! I’ve been super busy settling back into Texas after a year spent away. Luckily ATX has welcomed me back with open arms and I’m thrilled to be back in my favorite city. After unpacking the keyboard, I wanted to stop by and say hello to my favorite people ever (that’s you, reader) + give some thoughts I’ve had and borrowed.
Thoughts on The Journey by Brianna Wiest
If you have known me for more than ten seconds, I’ve probably mentioned Brianna Wiest. I’m obsessed with her work. Never mind that she once commented me as her writing daughter on the Internet. (Yes, I fangirled) Her work is exceptionally thought-provoking and I wanted to share a quote from her most recent book, The Pivot Year, that got me thinking:
“The journey is not how you place down what’s weighing on you, but how you learn to stop picking it up. Not when you stop, but the strength of your resolve not to begin again - with the habits, the people, the thoughts, the behaviors that you know can only lead to your own self destruction. It’s how you release your familiar unhappiness, how you decide you’ve outgrown the emotional crutches that have soothed you and distracted you and held you when you most needed it. How you move forward is what you begin to reach for in their place.”
Written by Brianna Wiest, The Pivot Year (Day 14)
Grass Is Greener Syndrome
Something that I’ve had to really hammer out and address this year is my chronic case of grass-is-greener syndrome, which is exactly what it sounds like. My brain got physically addicted to always taking the next step, always powering forward. Because forward has to be better than where I’m at now. And while at some extent, that’s my hardwired nature - I think part of my journey is learning to not always pick up the thoughts that say “what’s next?” and “time to make a move.” rather than just enjoying the stability of an intentionally created life.
The other day I caught myself in this thinking. I have been in my new home for nine days and I was already angry with myself for not having everything put away. For not getting back to writing an article the very day I got back. (Productive, idealistic, career-addicted Lindsey wouldn't stand for this!) It took some deep breathing to remember that I didn’t need to put such pressure on myself. That my readers aren’t waiting at the dinner table, fork and knives in hand, demanding another article or book by a certain day. How self-centered a thought like that is.
You’re halfway through with the article! Will you make my day and be my newest reader? :)
Realistic Reflective Prompts:
Here are some related questions I’m starting to ask myself that I’d encourage you to journal about:
What is my situational best today?
In some dreamscape, I’m the human who wakes up at 5AM and meditates before I jog five miles with the dog, write three chapters in my WIP, and then make my morning cup of coffee. In reality, coffee comes first. Because I work a lot, I take care of my needs, and a girl is tired (and sometimes caffeine-reliant).
Situational best means taking into account all of the out of control factors in your life before giving yourself a standard to live up to. Letting yourself off the hook for that ten mile run when your body aches. Or not feeling defeated when you couldn’t squeeze a meditation in this morning before work because your dog was taking forever on the morning walk. The out of control factors are not something to grade yourself on dealing with efficiently. You cut yourself some slack because you deserve it. And you still get shit done.
How do I make intentional time for myself today and intentional time for others this week?
Asking myself this question alone really helps me, because as I said, I work a lot and I also take care of my needs. Sometimes though, I feel myself trying to fulfill everyone else’s needs first before my own. And that never works because someone always needs more of you. Any mother can tell you that. But, for me, I need a little bit of time everyday. It might be a workout or time to write or ten minutes to do a meditation. Asking myself to plan for myself daily before fitting others in weekly really helps me feel happier throughout any given period of time. I understand I’m not a full-time parent, which can really shake this question up. But, intentionally carved time really gives me a solid structure that I need to achieve my goals, have good relationships, and maintain my mental health. Handling things on the fly or on a case by case basis always seems to come back and bite me.
What’s a choice that I can make this week that would directly ease my current needs?
Since I’ve started the moving process a few weeks ago, I really let my writer’s email fall wayside. There’s like thirty items that need my attention because during the move - I had no time to think about writing. Now, I do. My current need is to get back in the writing swing. And a choice I could make this week that will help me get back (that I really don’t want to deal with) is responding to all of those emails.
Sometimes speaking it into existence and realizing what your need is can be eye-opening. Often, things are subconsciously draining. Look it in the eye so that you can get it done.
Is Living On A Whim Really the Goal?
To sum up this rant, I’m going to quote my girl Brianna one more time. Because if the shoe fits? And because this quote spoke to me directly, after taking a ‘self-discovery’ year and moving all over the country. My grass-is-greener syndrome really flared after reading this, in a good way. Maybe it can do something for you too.
“You may think that living life to the fullest is seeing every country in the world and quitting your job on a whim and falling recklessly in love, but it’s really just knowing how to be where your feet are…A life most fully lived is not always composed of the things that rock you awake, but those that slowly assure you it’s okay to slow down…Little by little you will begin to see that life can only grow outward in proportion to how stable it is inward- that if the joy is not in the little things first, the big things won’t fully find us.”
Written by Brianna Wiest, The Pivot Year (Day 8)
Highlights and Limelights!
Thanks for joining me here again. I really hope you’ve been well and am wishing you lots of blessings this summer season. I want to leave you with a few things that I’ve recently discovered and I think you might like. I plan to do this section more often to add some flavor and share all the things keeping me excited right now.
I’m reading the award-winning Gate 75 right now and I keep thinking ‘How is this a self-published work? It’s so well written.’ If you love a good investigative fiction, go check him out. His work deserves a bigger platform.
(Don’t forget to rate Indie Authors on Amazon and Goodreads after you read them. It helps us out big time! Ratings for authors = more native discoverability)
Meet me at the Book Tour
Not at my book tour unfortunately. (YET) But, if you liked the quotes in this article and want to learn more about Brianna Wiest: her book tour is actually starting next week. Go meet my ‘writing mom’. And me too, cause I’ll be there.
The Unpublishable Substack
I’ve plugged this letter before and I have to do it again. Jessica DeFino continues to call us to action about what’s wrong with the beauty standards of today and what we can do better.
I Will Find You
I recently listened to this Harlan Coben book on an 18 hour drive to Texas. The drive flew by. Enough said.
Thanks for being here. Lots of love to you, as always.