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Where Are You Picking Up the Idea That Something’s Wrong with You?

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Someone asked me this week, “Where are you picking up ideas that something’s wrong with you?” Here’s an example from our family that I think perfectly illustrates how I might pick up on the feeling that something’s wrong with me…

G-Man and I got an email with a list of financial questions that needed answers quickly. I didn’t have the answers so I began to feel concerned. I called G. It took almost no time for me to clearly pick up on what was wrong with me—I shouldn’t get stressed about this stuff and I’m annoying. (These are unspoken messages, Team—but they were coming through loud and clear.)

One of the things I love most about the family I married into is that its members rarely get jarred when it comes to hard work. Most of the time, this character trait is both admirable and completely inspirational (especially to someone who gets overwhelmed making tuna fish sandwiches for her kids). But this disconnect causes issues in our relationship because I very often pick up on the idea that something’s wrong with me whenever I feel distraught.

Would I rather not get stressed? Sure. Does it make me wrong or right? No. Is this something G has to change? No. If I need G to change, I would need so many people in my life to change. I’m constantly getting messages that I should do things differently. Hell, strangers walking by our house feel compelled to tell me all the things they think I’m doing wrong and right in our yard. I can’t change all of them, but I can change me.

First, I can remind myself that nothing is wrong with me. This is just me. If someone has an issue with what I’m doing or doesn’t understand me, that doesn’t make me wrong. So the next time I feel like my husband, or anyone else for that matter, is making me feel like something isn’t right with me, I can take a beat. Sometimes, I can learn from the exchange and make adjustments to my behavior or my attitude. But often, I can just ignore it, because 90% of the time—I’m not wrong, we’re just different.

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