Re-learning self-efficacy (putting out fires and fixing leaky boats)

Okay, so thinking about this motivation stuff more... I just realised that *everything* my abusive FOO taught me to do was fear-based motivation.

Perp was always like "what will the neighbours think?!?!?!?!" and everthing in that vein.

And pretty much all things like "get good grades in school" and "get a good job" were about "else you will be horrifically poor and become homeless and die destitute".

Everything you were meant to "do" in life was all about averting disaster or preventing bad things from happening or preventing other people looking down on you or talking badly about you.

All of it was fear-based.


That's insane.
So my FOO's logic was probly all trauma-based logic too. I guess I need to view it that way. There used to be a HECK of a lot of untreated PTSD in previous generations :meh:

My approach would be: if you think the world around you is a big, bad, scary place and bad things are gonna happen, then you should leave and go somewhere safer. Cos constantly living in an "unsafe" place is gonna drive you nuts.

And if you've managed to find somewhere safe to live, then you should kinda relax and just enjoy it and just do sensible stuff to make sure things are okay and stay okay.

But I guess my FOO was living in a more-or-less safe space but their untreated trauma brains were telling them that "omg eveything is unsafe - we must do tons of stuff to prevent more trauma - hurry up everyone or really bad stuff will happen!!!"

That combined with the abusive, traumatic childhood that they put me through :meh: has my PTSD brain convinced too, that "scary things are gonna happen" and "there's no such thing as a pretty-safe and pretty-okay life".

It's like there's literally no part of my brain for dealing with things that are "okay and safe".

I gotta work out how to do that stuff, from scratch.


It's like there's literally no part of my brain for dealing with things that are "okay and safe".
Can you try to find out if there is an exception to this rule? Is there something you just enjoy doing? Something that’s rewarding in and of itself?

And re the ”now it’s done” self talk: I’m afraid it’s one of those things where you need a lot of repetition. I’ve found it quite useful but it took a while until it properly started to work.


You know if you go to see a film and you're really looking forward to it cos everyones said how great it is and you start watching the film and well, it's all right but meh not all that.

Like I dont know I might be talking nonsense - if you are looking for something to feel good, does that make it less likely to feel good?
I think I get what you mean @berlinda re over-anticipating something and then feeling a bit let down.
I'm sure we all do this often enough... with Christmas coming up that's probly a good example - everyone's hoping it'll be nice and special and often it's less than we'd hope.

Dunno if that's what I'm doing most of the time tho... I don't suppose I have big expectations that buying building supplies will be "all wonderful" or that taking out the rubbish will fill me with a deep sense of satisfaction :laugh:

I guess I'd just like something going on inside other than "meh".

Like shouldn't I be associating something at least *vaguely* positive with this stuff? Doing the dishes is self-care, kinda? I mean I'm making sure I have clean dishes and that there's not a pile of dirty dishes in the sink. But all I think is "FFS doing the dishes sucks" and even when it's done I'm not like "Ummm yay" it's just like there's zero response inside of "oh good, I got that task done".


I don't suppose I have big expectations that buying building supplies will be "all wonderful" or that taking out the rubbish will fill me with a deep sense of satisfaction :laugh:
Lol fair enough :laugh:

I guess, is it normal to feel a bit meh about completing chores? I mean I can imagine plenty of people might.

Though I know for me I do feel great when I get stuff done so...

Great that you're exploring it all anyhow ;)
:) @berlinda

So I went and did a bit more renovation preparation work in the bathroom... didn't feel like doing it at all, but I actually managed to be aware that if I did those bits today, I would be glad tomorrow and the next steps would be easier/ wouldn't seem like such a huge task, cos another bit was already done.

That's another aspect of this that I rarely get right. The connection between me-today and me-tomorrow.

I guess that's another kid logic thing... that tomorrow is "so far off" - at least emotionally.

It's so hard for me to connect doing a task today to feeling genuinely grateful/ relieved the next day that it is already done.

Dunno how I feel about having completed this bit/ task of the renovation stuff - I think I'm more pleased that I actually managed to push through it, even tho I had zero motivation.

As for the task itself, I guess I'm glad I got this bit done, cos it makes the overall project seem less daunting.

I think I'm finally getting the hang of it. It's quite a complicated project... Quite a few people have told us "do not do this yourself!! get an expert to do it!!"

Which I think is exaggerated, but at the same time I've been clear that I don't want to do it totally on my own, as a beginner at this stuff. So we're getting a builder to help next Friday.

Tho when we were at the building supplies store yesterday, the guy there was all OCD about it too and was like "no, don't just get a general builder get a SPECIALIST"

Which again, I think is exaggerated.

We are being careful and thorough and keeping things simple and getting professional help. That'll do.

But yeah, it's been a daunting project with dozens and dozens of things that you could do totally wrong, as a beginner.

So navigating all those has been... daunting.

But I think I "get" it now.

It's nearly all prepped now, ready for the most important step on Friday.

And it feels nice to finally "get" it and to not feel daunted anymore. To feel like I'm "in control" of this and not feeling helpless.

I guess if you spend enough time with something, staring at it, wondering about it, asking questions about it... eventually you start filling in all the gaps in your knowledge and then... suddenly there's more knowledge than gaps :laugh:

Maybe that's something I need to focus on - not what the individual task feels like so much... but rather what it feels like overall...?

Another thing would be taking out the rubbish or doing the dishes - I don't actually feel any sense of achievement about that, most of the time.

But it does make me feel like I'm contributing to the household. It makes me feel competent. It makes me feel useful and functional.

Maybe that's what I should focus on more? The feelings *surrounding* the task... not the feelings *directly connected* to the task.

So I've spent the morning (Sunday) in bed being cozy and lazy. Made brunch tho, so I guess that's good.

About to go and give the sheep their quarterly worm tablets.

And then going to go and do some more renovations prep work.

I'm meant to be doing some stuff for work too.

Also need to clean guinea pig cage.

And do laundry for next week.

I should (ahem) also put the injured pigeon out in the aviary because the weather report says the next week will be mild temperatures. So I should (ahem) wind-proof that before it gets dark and put pigeon in there.

I must (this is the more crappy version of "should") also do some paperwork (bills, letters, crap like that)


Haven't taken my meds for the day yet either.

Weekend is drawing to a close and I've not gotten much done :meh:
Whoops, it's 7 pm and I've gotten some stuff done, but not "enough" :meh:
How did it get to be 7 pm? Where did Sunday go? :cautious:

Anyway... just had a realisation during dinner that I have inner convictions about things like paperwork and household stuff that "I'm bad at paperwork" and "I'm bad at household stuff".

It's like somewhere in my head, that's set in stone.

So even if I make an effort about paperwork and household stuff, those convictions do not go away, anyway.
Which makes it kind of "pointless" to even try.

I think I need to find a way of working around that.

Something like "Due to major childhood trauma I never learned to do paperwork and finances properly"
And "Due to major childhood trauma I never learned to enjoy running my own household"

Also, I got told "You're messy" so much as a child, like a broken record, that I probably have that tattooed on my brain too.

I think I really *identify* with those things.

Maybe I should just start by saying "I feel lost with paperwork, finances and household stuff cos I didn't learn any of that during childhood trauma"

(To clarify I did learn the "how to" of a lot of this stuff... Half my childhood was certainly spent cleaning and doing household tasks. Ugh. It just feels like slave labour to me... Not something people do "voluntarily" to make their home a place that they like.)

(Also, I don't *know* what kind of a home I would like. I kinda know a *bit* but not much. Basically any house reminds me of childhood trauma. I don't think I actually like houses *at all*. I would much prefer to live in *anything* else... anything not-housy... A tent. A cabin. A caravan. A houseboat. Anything that's "not-a-house".)

(It's hard to make a house "nice" when I don't actually want to live in a house. I feel a lot happier since I've been living on the farm. Somehow a farm is less "housy" than a normal house. And there's a little cabin in the garden, that needs renovating... but I would actually prefer to live in that, rather than in the house.)
So here's something to add to the pile of "blindingly obvious insights" :bag:

I've been working way too much for umm... longer than I care to admit :p

And getting way too little rest.

And that combination of over-worked and not-enough-rest is a real killer of motivation.

So no wonder I'm struggling with motivation :facepalm:

When I get *enough* rest, and when my workload is not crazy, I do generally find that motivation comes back all of its own accord...

Like little plants sprouting and starting to grow :)

I guess at the moment I'm just too drained of energy to find *anything* inspirational :meh:

So I guess I will try and get more rest and reduce my workload where I can?

And *then* start looking at self-efficacy and motivation through a more useful lens.

So now I just gotta work out how to take more breaks and how to work less :D

But at least I got a plan!! :tup: