When You Feel Like Running Away from Your Own Life
I couldn’t believe it was happening again! For the third morning in a row, I rolled over in bed, hit the snooze button, and pulled the covers over my head. I didn’t want to face another stress-filled day. The fact that I had to pee was the only thing that got me up and out of bed. Only a year and a half into my “dream job,” why did I feel like quitting? Was something wrong with me?
Have you ever found your current situation so overwhelming that you want to run away from your whole life?
It might feel like:
- You hate your job.
- Your friends seem MIA and unresponsive.
- You can’t relate to your spouse or significant other.
- You feel tired of doing the same old things.
- You feel angry at your own body.
- Your kids (whom you love) are driving you crazy!
- Like me, you may resist getting out of bed in the morning.
When the urge to flee our own circumstances takes root, we need to ask what’s really going on? And what can we do about it short of buying a ticket on the first train out?
At first, it may seem like any number of external circumstances are the “problem.” Our job, our boss, spouse, or another person in our life, our looks/body, or our financial picture can all act like culprits, causing our fight-or-flight response. Changing our circumstances seems like the only answer! But is it?
One thing is true, change is needed. Changing our external environment might bring momentary relief, but it isn’t the long term cure for what’s bugging us, only a band-aid fix at best.
The desire to run away doesn’t simply go away. Taking time to explore our symptoms closely might reveal the very thing we need to change from within. Some great questions to ask ourselves might be:
What are you ignoring that is important to you?
Where in your life have you sacrificed something that really matters to you? Sometimes we put important things on hold that really need our regular attention. Exercise, creative outlets, time in nature, and self-care are all things we might be neglecting when we shouldn’t. What do you need to do more regularly to feel whole and integral?
Here’s a Free 30-Day Journal of Self-Discovery you can use to uncover important things you might be neglecting:
In what ways have you “sold out” on your vision for your life?
What have you given up on? Was there something you’re passionate about that you chose not to do because of perceived limitations? The fact that it’s bugging you, IMO, is a sign that although you’ve given up on it, it hasn’t given up on you. If you dug out that first draft of dreams from the bottom drawer, would you see new possibilities to dust them off and try again? Running away from one job and then another is unhealthy and may look bad on your resume in the long run. Try to use where you are as a springboard to the next best thing, rather than just quitting.
Who Comes First in Your Life?
Feeling like running away from your life can be a clear sign that you’re spinning your wheels trying to please others and make a good appearance in life. What you’re creating, as a result, might not be moving you in the right direction of your essential purpose. When you feel that way, it’s important not to make any rash decisions. Instead, take the time to find out what you need to change in yourself first. Give yourself permission to make your needs as important as everyone else’s.
You can also Download this Self-Empowerment Contract to keep on track with getting your needs met.
What Matters Most in Life?
Focus on purpose and the important things that matter in our lives. Are those needs being met? In the end, we may still end up leaving a situation or persons behind, but not because they made us unhappy or caused our discontent, but because we have better, more important things to do. We won’t be running from negativity. Instead, our movement will be the result of something stronger pulling us in a positive direction.
Can Better Balance Be Attained?
For me, I realized I’d been putting in too many hours on the job trying to make something work that just needed more patience and time. On top of that, I wasn’t getting in my regular exercise nor was I making time for writing on a regular basis. I was too often letting work come between me and my life. Even though I loved my job, it was taking over my life and that’s usually a recipe for burnout, which I was facing every morning. I made those simple changes to exercise and write every day regardless of what my job “needed,” and as a result, my life started coming back into balance, and the desire to run faded away.
Getting your life back to good can be challenging, but if you’re willing to ask yourself the right questions and then take action to put things right, the tendency to run away may subside altogether. When we know we’re heading in the right direction (for us), it’s easier to stay positive, focused and moving forward.
In what ways have you had to adjust to make life work in the present?