I'm building a life that I love.
If we rewind a few decades, things were different. I was labeled as lazy and idle by my teachers, they would tell my parents that I didn't want to learn. I felt embarrassed by my academic performance, and ashamed compared to my peers. I lacked support, and was labeled "dumb" by close relatives.
What changed? Not much. I drifted around the school system until age sixteen. I had bad grades all around, I wasn't good keeping up with a schedule, and my interests would shift every season.
I've always felt like a peculiar person. On one hand, I'm not able to focus, on the other if I'm able to put my mind to it.. I'm a work horse. I struggle to concentrate on tasks throughout the day. My interest peaks and dips, where I either give everything or nothing to it. I don't function on regular work environments. The idea of a fixed schedule makes me nervous as I cannot guarantee that I'll be productive at 9AM. Focus comes in waves, and I hope that the periods of extreme focus make up for the time left behind.
I'm unsure how other people's mind works, but I can tell you about mine. My mind is constantly in a state of distraction. I often act on impulsive behaviours. For example, interrupting people while they speak. Bringing a topic to the surface allows me to shift my focus back to the conversation. Saying it out loud allows me to remind myself and ensure that a thought doesn't get lost. I'm getting better at it.
My "distractions" were many times misunderstood by friends and close partners. They thought I didn't care about what they were saying. And to be honest, for many years I misunderstood myself too. When I suppress these thoughts, these emotions, I find myself struggling to remember them. And I end up struggling to forgive myself for it. Interrupting, helps me share the responsibility.
I'm impatient, and impulsive. My brain is on a constant quest for dopamine, I'm chemically wired to seek more. I compulsively chase high-dopamine activities and stimulus to turn my brain on. When I'm away from my routine, I tend to go off track. A couple of years ago I wasn't aware of this, while I grew these dopamine hits have become more necessary. I seek jobs that are challenging, and where I can easily find myself with too much on my plate. I tend to dedicate time to hobbies that are hard to master, I suck at surfing and crossfit kills me. I've multiple ideas and projects running through my head all the time. And worst of all, I sometimes find myself trapped by social media and the pull to refresh dopamine hit.
I beat myself over failure. My short term memory sucks. I write a lot. I take notes, I write tasks, I set reminders. If I don't have a system in place I won't think about it again. My calendar holds my life together. Every time my short term memory fails me I get annoyed.
I zone out and jiggle a lot when in a focus state. I talk a lot, and have a tendency to overshare — not with everyone. I take no medicine. I know the recipe that I need to follow to feel balanced, and I do feel balanced nowadays.
I never understood how I had such a different reaction to stimulants. While my friends would feel an increase in energy and euphoria from doing drugs, I would feel a calming effect. Maybe that's why I never got hooked to anything — sorry sis, for reading this. I could drink a dozen coffees throughout the day and have no trouble sleeping at night — anxiety kinda changed that, but it's different topic.
I don't like labels, and some things do feel trendy to speak about — I was told by an ex employer. Writing these texts publicly helps me make sense of it. It helps me get closer with people around me. While I'm not chasing labels, I'm trying to feel understood.
I've struggled through school, and most people wouldn't give much about me. Looking back I wouldn't change a thing about me. I will keep on experimenting and fine tuning my recipe. I'm weird, and sometimes difficult to be with — but never boring.
See you soon, when hyper focus hits again.