Should

Sunday 25 June, 2000

I am practising letting go. I am on holiday and I have nothing to worry about. I keep telling myself there is nothing that need concern me, but still the thoughts come. The main one is work. Can I actually hack it on the front line of investment banking?

I haven’t done much since I’ve been here and I feel sort of guilty, even though I’ve done exactly what I’ve wanted. It seems strange I should feel guilty. Why do I feel bad about having done nothing? I didn’t plan to do much before I came over here. There are a few people I’d like to see and I shall see them all, so why worry?

It feels as though I have stockpiles of guilt and I don’t know how to get rid of it. I sometimes feel that I could be made to feel guilty about everything I do. I have a voice somewhere inside which tells me from time to time that I should be doing more; making more of an effort to get out and see people. It’s almost as if I’m not allowing myself to live my life. Why can’t I be happy with what I do?

I often come away from weekends with a feeling that I wasted some of my time or that I should have done more or done things differently. It would seem I find it difficult to relax fully. I’m the sort of person who is sometimes motivated to do something simply by the feeling of guilt which others instil in me, or which I instill in myself.

Spoke to Francis about this. Our conclusion is that, like everything else, it takes practice – it’s a process that needs to be worked at.

I also spoke to Karaj. He said whenever I hear the work ‘should’ it comes from outside, not from me. It is a word which always creates guilt. There is no need to listen because it has nothing to do with me. It is someone else’s voice. And it doesn’t matter whose voice it is. It isn’t mine. Relax and be comfortable with who I am. Karaj added that this is the greatest struggle for a human being.


2 Responses to “Should”

  1. George Says:

    Oh, how true. Even when the work that I should do has been done, there is still that nagging voice telling me that there must be something else to do, I am not allowed to sit back and relax!
    I am sure that in my case it has to do with parental control. My mother was always on the go, never able to stop. Somehow that has been instilled in me, what people might call ‘work ethic’, but it is a destructive drive, and can be physically harming. I am sure that is why my father died of a heart attack aged 63. This ‘should’ be a lesson for me.

    Thanks for the blog.

  2. Jonathan Lewis Says:

    I’ve just found this post again, George. What a great addition your comment is. Thank you.

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