i am learning
to value
different things
like friendship
fun and
deep connection

and i do
find myself worried
that i am going to regret
these choices

i do worry
that i may be squandering
precious professional opportunities
by choosing
not to open my laptop
sunday morning
and dive in
as i used to

but something
has shifted for me
not sure what it is
but what i do know is
i don’t want to do
that doesn’t feel
and true

i find
i don’t want
to achieve
just for the sake
of achieving

and i am amazed
that i no longer feel like
i have so much
to prove

i no longer
feel consumed with
the need to prove
my value
my intelligence
my worth
my care

i did a lot of
(it informed
my every move)
and it had me
pushing myself
the last 18 years
often to an extreme
well beyond reason
refusing to believe
had anything to do
with me

i pushed through
and dysfunction
that frankly should
have killed me

i pushed through
and heartbreak
that threatened
my will to live

i pushed through
mental and physical
that by any measure
were extreme
and clearly unhealthy

and i don’t want to push

which scares me

i am not so sure
what i am going to do
if i am not pushing

we don’t ask the question
because we don’t want to hear
the answer
because we don’t want to do
what we know we will have to do
if we get honest
about what
we know is true

and i am painfully aware
that i am compulsively dodging
what i know
to be true

i am done
with how i have been doing things
and i simply do not know
what that means
for me
and those around me

i built a life
on sheer will

and i am
incredibly grateful
for what all that pushing gave me
and i am so very glad
to know
that if all else fails
i still have
my will
my push
my sheer scrappy grit

but for now
i must confess
i am almost amenable
to risking most everything
to see
what happens
when i stop pushing

to be clear
i am not going to disappear
(though i do fantasize about it sometimes)
and i am not going to stop running
the institute for the psychology of eating
i am not going to stop
i am not going to stop
doing things

i’m just gonna stop
the incessant pushing
that has been my driver, always

it’s been just a few days
since i started
playing with
not pushing (so much)
and i must tell you
the results
have been
a little bit terrifying
and a lot comforting

i am feeling
myself more

and in that
it has been such a long time
(before i can remember)
since i have felt

she is different
than i imagined

i am different
and not so sure
i am
who i thought
i was

so much
of what
i feel
is in response
to the world
around me

i think
i may have
lost me
(more than i knew)
as so many of us
super sensitive feelers do

so less pushing
no proving
and lots of feeling

that is what
i am most focused on

maybe you
pause too
and take a look
at why you do what you do
and how you do what you do

the pause
is the best way
to make space
for what
is most true

is it time to be
a little more gentle
with you?

❤️ emily joy rosen

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