I had a pretty powerful conversation today so I thought I'd share it with you. Sometimes, I fall victim to doubting myself. I get insecure about my intellect and question how knowledgeable I really am. But I noticed something today. Sometimes I'm just intimidated. Maybe I'm being challenged to share or communicate in a space that I feel judged or uncomfortable. Maybe it's work pressure. Maybe it's a conversation with my partner about a topic I either know nothing about or have no interest in. Maybe it's because I feel like I just can't win.
Today, it was hardcore studying for my state licensing exam. I was telling my friend, "I can't believe I got that many answers wrong on my practice test. I was CERTAIN I knew the answer". Their response to me was, "I think you're just overwhelmed". And my therapist brain went "OMG how did I not realize that?!". Brain fog is real folks!! So here is a take away affirmation: I'm smart and I will figure this out but right now, I'm just overwhelmed. High stress equals decreased ability to respond.
I've heard people describe it as "feeling dumb": I can't think clearly, I'm constantly drawing a blank, I'm mentally drained and checking out might all be pointing to I'm overwhelmed. While frustrating to experience, it's not permanent and it certainly is no indication of any character flaw. Welcome to being human. We have limits. And not respecting those limits might mean our brain goes auto shut down.
It's 1am as I'm writing this so I'm going to take my own advice, stop typing and start sleeping. More rest and water. Less panic about everything I'm getting "wrong".
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Eva Marie is best known as the front woman of rock band Eva Under Fire. She is also an active therapist and mental health advocate.
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