Thursday, September 15, 2016

It's okay to hide under the covers (or your desk) sometimes.

It doesn't matter who you are or what you do, at some point, you will freak out about your job (yes, even if it's a job you love). At some point, you will want to hide under your covers.

This is the story of how I learned to embrace my hiding urge.

I was having a crap day writing. Every ounce of self-confidence I had painstakingly built over the years drained out of me, leaving me shaken, sad, and very, very scared.

I sat in front of my computer, my arms wrapped around myself, and I was whispering, "I can't do this. I can't. I just want to hide under my desk and make this go away."

As you can imagine, this went on for quite some time.

Finally, a little calm voice in my brain said, "Well, go ahead. No one else is here. You can hide under your desk for a little while. Why not?"

Why not, indeed? So I did.

I slid off my chair, grabbed a soft blanket, and sat on the floor under my desk.

I'd never seen my office from this perspective.  The floor was actually clean (miracle!). The bottom of my desk made a nice little roof, protecting me from the sky that had been falling in my imagination. Almost immediately, my anxiety eased.

I don't know how long I sat there. I'm sure there is research showing that small spaces make us feel comforted, maybe something going back to our primitive hind-brains. All I know is that it stopped the flood of fear into my body and gave me a few moments of much needed peace.

That's when I realized that it is okay to look like a weirdo. It's okay to stop and protect yourself. And it's okay to hide once in a while.

Take a little break. Your brain and body will thank you.

And don't be afraid of looking like a weirdo.