I know I’m pretty much useless when, instead of getting work done, I’m folding clothes.
It’s 11 a.m. and my workday should be in full swing. But I work from home, and so instead I’m folding laundry and checking my emails every five minutes looking for something exciting. Nothing exciting comes in.
I spot the stack of old financial papers that need shredding. I’ve let them languish by the shredder for months. Yes, months. I know something is really awry because now pulverizing that stack through the shredder is looking really good and I spend the next hour doing it.
Hello, Rebellion. How are you today?
“I don’t want to! You can’t make me. I don’t care if I should. No.”
My name is No . . . my sign is No.
A Types, overachievers, controllers, and those of us who generally Get Shit Done know this feeling and it scares the heck out of us. It’s called IDGAF. (You can work that acronym out.)
IDGAF is your inner rebel, telling you she needs a break. Give her one. What’s so hard about that?
Oh, I know what’s hard: you’re going to lose control of your life for five or ten minutes, or maybe even half a day. Or if you really slack, maybe even . . . a week. And if you’re really, really screwed – a month. And of course the ultimate freak: forever. You’ll be in IDGAF forever.
Because what if you never find your way out of IDGAF? What if you stop earning your income? What if your marriage that you’ve been propping up suddenly bores you? What if you stop to relax for one bald second and discover that you’re running on fumes and those fumes felt so real that you lived off them for ages?
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Play with this thought: If the emotion of rebellion is totally abnormal to you, then she probably had a hard time reaching you. She knows you fear her, you’re afraid of the Bad Things She Might Do. No wonder she keeps getting more forceful. Why are you afraid of her?
Why are you afraid of any parts of you, for that matter? It’s all you. Don’t you love all of you? When a new part pops up, why do you silence it? Do you hurt you?
That’s a really good question.
How do you avoid you? How do you hurt you? How do you avoid your Inner Rebel like she’s a banshee sworn to take you down?
Is it overwork? Are you always gone from your family, involved in “more important stuff?” Or do you have a lack of free time generally (yes, you can be addicted to business).
Maybe you need to be right at all costs? Need people to love you? To see the value in your work or your job as a parent? To build that email list, or prove something to yourself?
Are you clueless when to push hard for your goal and when to kick back and shred papers? Do you default to the one because you don’t trust the other?
Think of what a lifetime of neglecting your Inner Rebel looks like: Burnout, exhaustion, avoidance, isolation, emptiness and most of all – fear.
Right now, I wake up in the morning and feel how my well needs filling. This whole week, I’m on a stay-cation.
I get up and have coffee. Then I take a meaningful book outside, prop up my feet on my patio furniture, and read for 30 minutes. Then if I’m inspired to write (like right now), I do. If I’m inspired instead to snip roses from my garden, or even creatively organize silverware in my drawers, I’ll do that instead. I’m firing up my mind again. That wall of important stuff that needs to get done has a temporary prop against it, keeping it off me.
I know myself pretty well: I can pretend I’m in balance all the time, but I’m not. And similarly, I don’t trust anyone who tells me they are, either. Instead, I hope that I’ve learned how to spot the imbalance faster than ever before, and fearlessly course-correct.
I’m not burned out. I’m more . . . craving something: enrichment, creativity, uncertainty. I want to see what happens to me, what is reflecting back at me in my life. I have to be quiet right now to receive that reflection, and become a mirror.
This week (maybe this month or even this season) I’m going to be slow. The tide is out, and I’m turning up the shells on the sand. I will regain my zip and sizzle. I will be seized with drive and energy again. Now is my time to practice being quiet and see what I’ve already built, which if I’m still enough, will reflect itself on me, and fill me up again.
What state of being are you in right now? Are we sharing a season together? Post below. I want to hear.
XOXO with love and Flow,
This e-mail couldn’t have come at a more opportune time for me.
Hell ya, Summer! I’m burnt out and didn’t acknowledge this until I read this.
I forgot to give in to my IDGAF voice. She has something important to say. I’m still a little scared of it, but I know it’s for the best.
Thanks for this insight and the thoughts.
Yes! I just love it that you are so bold to say IDGAF so that I can say it too!!! It’s ok to have moments like these to help get the balance back. I choose to practice loving my Inner Rebel who is screaming out at me right now. It is truly comforting to know I am not the only one going through this time. Being a workaholic has put me on the brink of utter exhaustion. Through this period in my life I have realized that it’s up to me. It’s up to me to give myself permission to find the balance that I dream of. To Create the Life that I Dream Of. I get to sculpt my life into what I want, instead of what everyone says should happen. It’s an exciting transition and it’s ok to have an IDGAF day!!
Luv this! I’m in the 50 and over age group…At this point in My life after taking care of everyone else…I’m feeling like maybe it’s all about Me now…The house is not a total disaster…a little dusty maybe…the kids are grown…the dogs are house trained…no one is on the brink of starvation…as I retreat to my recliner and sip on my coffee…I think to myself…ahhh IDGAF! Thanks Summer!!!! Totally relatable.
Oh! Summer, you precious, beautiful soul! you have such a way with words and always speak exactly what I am feeling.. amazing!
you are a precious, precious gift!
Wow! This article reflects exactly what I feel right now. I am frustrated that I don’t have my normal level of drive and energy (mainly around working out) and wondering where it went. I have been flowing for it and slightly panicked and scared of what will happen if I don’t get it back. But I guess I need to listen to my inner rebel and figure out what she wants to do (new class, sleep in, etc.).
I didn’t know what IDGAF meant until I read Meg’s comment and put it all together – I am using it!
I had to laugh when I read this email today and knew exactly what the acronym meant. I have been teetering close to burnout, and have been listening to my body and self on what I wanted to do. Today instead of buckling down to get clients I laid in bed and finished a mystery. Then I took a shower, dressed and drove to get these fabulous hair curlers and nail polish. Then I chatted on the phone. I reviewed a document someone asked for feedback on, and now I am putting on some music to tidy and clean the kitchen. I have meetings tonight so the rest of today I am asking “What do I want to do?” It feels really good and I am learning to cut myself some (much-needed) slack.
This soooo resonates with me!!! For weeks, months even, I’ve burned the candle at both ends while continuing to push myself to some unknown limit or goal or I don’t even know. Right now I’m working 2 jobs and trying to run 2-3 businesses as basically a single mom and I know how ridiculous that sounds but why the bell can’t I have it all!?? I deserve it! And it takes hard work to get there. But as much as I know what I need to do (sometimes I feel like I know) it’s the follow-thru that eludes me. My stack of papers that needs shredding has been put away in a box since last August! I don’t even know where my paper shredder is! I finally finished a book today that I’ve been reading for 3 months and now I forgot what the book before it was even about! Today is the first day off I’ve had in so long and I tried to relax but haven’t really yet. I’m glad I got this email. I’m feeling like IDGAF is exactly where I belong right now!!!
I just went through this – more EFO than IDGAF – and perhaps I still am. Then realized I needed a shift, taking time for me. To do what I want, when I want. I’d gotten a little behind in m.e. school with all the busyness of moving. It was a week of inspiration, reflection, journaling, Flowdreaming, decorating my new condo, m.e school, and art therapy class while listening to your podcasts, Dear Venus & How I Built This while creating. Now on business in Phoenix I’ m staying at a resort I’ve always liked instead of a friends house and enjoying the amenities. My sister and operations manager is having a hard time with loss of control, severe anxiety, and poor decision making. She’s burned out. I gave her next week off and e-mailed her Intro to Flowdreaming to see if she’d pursue the opportunity to help herself. I just hired an assistant and she’s already started the Prosperity Challenge and loves it. They see how happy I am. How grounded and inspired and my friends want in. Thanks Summer.
Love your message. I”ll ponder it today. I’m probably living in some fear, but I’m working on it.
I recently started a blog with the IDGAF attitude, but haven’t put much time into it. (Blogging is a whole new world for me!) But I’ll get there! Thanks for your message.