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To wish I was less scatty/more forward looking

(8 Posts)
OccasionalVEgan Wed 08-Jun-16 20:45:36

I don't know what is wrong with me
This comes up all the time in my life and I don't know how to fix it

I am just fucking appalling at knowing what I want ahead of time and expressing myself properly.

It leads to all sorts of shit in my life because I just give off the wrong signals all the time and cause confusion.

So for example, a friend will ask if I can pet sit a few weeks in advance and I'll say fine, even though I know I've got a busy week planned and will be swamped at work and it's DS's birthday and he has a hospital appointment etc etc - I think 'never mind, I can manage it all'. Then I'll get to the date and realise I really, really can't help out and suddenly feel overwhelmed and think 'what was I thinking?', and have to let her down.

Or I'll plan to have some work done on the house and line up the decorators and then just days before realise it was a stupid idea all along for the most obvious reasons (eg building shelves against a wall that has a damp problem that still needs attention!), and piss everyone off/waste a deposit.

Someone always seems to be saying to me 'but you said it was fine last week...'/ 'but you didn't seem bothered before'. And I think 'yes, but I don't feel that way now.'

It's like I can't trust my feelings ahead of time. Or maybe I bury my head in the sand - because sometimes I'll have a feeling something isn't right with an arrangement but I don't recognise how I really feel until it becomes a reality. But sometimes it's just plain scattiness that stops me from seeing the obvious until it's right in front of me.

I just have real problems thinking ahead, visualising future events in abstract for some reason and I'm wondering if it is a thing??

I don't want to be like this and to be honest it's fucking embarrassing. I'm a grown woman of 39 who has no clue! I think some of it is assertiveness but it's also fuzzy, scatty thinking. I wish I could change but it seems to be the way I am.

Does anyone relate at all?

Inkanta Wed 08-Jun-16 21:25:28

Nothing wrong with a bit of 'scatty', if that's your worst trait, you seem like a good egg to me. smile

OccasionalVEgan Wed 08-Jun-16 21:50:53

Thank you smile
I think I'm a nice person, but maybe too nice

I get talked into things I don't really want or haven't properly considered (why can't I just stop and think?!) and then realise too late what has happened. It's a pattern that is ruining so many of my personal and professional relationships.

Mooingcow Wed 08-Jun-16 22:10:31

Funnily enough, I started weaning myself off this sort of behaviour when I found MN.

I hadn't really considered that it's absolutely ok to sit and work through a whole scenario thinking 'yes, but will it work for me?'

Once you start saying 'let me get back to you' instead of 'yes' that becomes a habit.

Then you can say 'sorry, doesn't work for me' with as much or little detail as you feel appropriate.

Not realising stuff like walls etc and losing deposits, try getting people to come and run through the whole project with you. If you say 'you're amazing at thinking things through logically and thoroughly, will you help me?' 9/10 are so flattered they will do it and write you a plan and everything!

Being talked into stuff is people pleasing. You don't have to do it!

TowerRavenSeven Wed 08-Jun-16 22:15:21

Learn to say at the time, 'I'll think about it and let you know' or 'I'll check and see what we have going that week' automatically instead of 'yes' right away. Then take your time and really think about it and get back to them.

OccasionalVEgan Wed 08-Jun-16 22:17:35

Yes, people-pleasing is it! I think it's worse as i try to people please and then my assertiveness kicks in further down the line and I end up upsetting/inconveniencing people more because i couldn't think things through/be upfront from the outset. I hate it.

I am glad you found a way through mooing, it sounds like I need to do the same

booitsme Wed 08-Jun-16 22:25:11

I think you are half way there as you realise it's a problem. I used to say yes to too many things and then let people down when nearer to the time I realised I just don't want to / can't do it. If your knee jerk reaction is to say yes ask for time or delay your response and sit and think it through more and what it actually means.

I'm terrible at planning ahead and was late a number of times when I started my new job. I couldn't understand it as I hate being late and felt everything was conspiring against me to make me late - traffic usually, or sick kids... My sister helped me realise I just wasn't allowing enough time. I had this ridiculous notion that most journeys should take an hour. She pointed out I was leaving no room for error and I didnt t think my route through and what could go wrong and think about getting a parking space etc. She pointed out that I was more likely to be late than on time. All seems so obvious but I wasn't breaking it down and it sounds like you don't break things down either and mentally check things are possible. Make yourself do that. You just need to break the habit. Ps I am now rarely late!

OccasionalVEgan Wed 08-Jun-16 23:18:32

Thanks boo, yes it is a habit and probably one that I may just be able to break now I've become that bit more aware of it.

I just don't stop and think, I tend to get carried away by other people's enthusiasm or their immediate needs or even because they intimidate me - something like that I guess.

It's not that I don't consider my own needs, it's just I do so too late. And maybe also that I just can't think clearly when put on the spot.

I hope I can change!

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