They say everyone has an addiction, and I think I’ve found mine, and I’m not entirely sure if it’s a good thing or a bad thing.
I am committed to finishing things.
Take for example a novel I am reading at the moment, The Loney. I do not like this book. I can’t get into it, I can’t relate to the characters, I can’t like anything about it. Yet I am determined to finish it.
But why? Why am I sitting here, forcing myself to read word after word, page after page of a story I am not enjoying?
The answer is I don’t know, other than simply for the fact of saying “I’ve done that”.
I’m like this with a lot of things. I don’t like to be a quitter, to not see things through. I held down 2 part time jobs whilst in my final year of my degree and wouldn’t stop even though I was overworked, overtired and had no free time simply because I didn’t want to fail at holding everything together. I can’t leave work without completing every single piece of marking otherwise I will spend all evening fixated on the task I didn’t quite complete. The other week I couldn’t make it to the end of the film Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them and I couldn’t forgive myself for days. This fixation on doing everything, completing things and being in control doesn’t make me happy. In fact it makes me more stressed than anything else I can think of.
I wonder where this relentless desire to ‘complete things’ came from. It’s true to say that as a child I was an overachiever, so maybe it spawns from that. Maybe the perfectionist in my can’t stand to have something half finished. Maybe I am trying to prove a point to myself that I can overcome things in life even if I don’t like the journey of getting there.
Either way it is an annoying trait, one that I want to stamp out of myself. Maybe that’s my next task to fixate on and complete – learning to let go of things that I don’t enjoy or aren’t making me happy.
What would you change about yourself if you could?