May 31, 2012

Giving Up on Good: If I don't, who will?

Today, I'm linking up with these two lovely ladies in their quest to let go of things that no longer serve them. Ooooh there is so much freedom in this!

I have the tendency of taking on the world's problems. I think entirely too much, over-analyze most situations and feel an unrelenting need to solve every issue I encounter. I am the epitome of Type A, logical beyond all else. Lines are drawn clear in my head– right or wrong, good or bad– and when I see someone being taken advantage of or hurting, it infuriates me. I crave justice and I want to help.

This has been my nature since I was little and likely the reason my heart used to ache for the kid picked last in gym class or the homeless person begging on the street corner. It was only natural when I decided to study Psychology in college. I ate up every last bio psych and child development lecture, hungry to start saving the world. After graduation, I became a social worker, because what the heck else was I supposed to do with a BA in Psychology?

I spent three years working in the nonprofit sector before moving on to Child Protective Services where I coached parents on basic life skills (budgeting, proper nutrition, organization, etc.) and appropriate parenting. By the age of 24, I was starting to feel burnt out. It became harder and harder to disconnect emotionally, and I found that constantly taking on other people's problems was a heavy burden to carry. That job proved just how sensitive I really am.

Although I find myself in a new career today, I still struggle to hold up the weight of world in my personal life. I call it the,"If I don't, who will?" mentality and dammit, it's exhausting! I see an unfair situation and want to help. So I invest emotionally and end up worrying about things that have no direct impact on my life...things I ultimately can't change.

So today, I'm throwing in the towel on a good intention which no longer serves me. I'm taking one BIG exhale and releasing the pressure I put on myself to fix everything. I'm trading in my frustration with people who want help but who won't help themselves, and instead giving them some grace. My conviction is honorable and my passion is strong, but it's not my responsibility to save everyone. This I've learned.

I feel lighter already.

and so it is...

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