I’ve had a lot of mock exams this week, and they’ve got me thinking.
I hear people celebrating their, grades and whilst I am genuinely happy for them, I’m never happy with the grade I get.
100% is just ‘oh, good’- file it away and work on the next thing. Anything less is room for improvement.
I think it must tie into perfectionism. I don’t believe I’ve done enough work, so when I get a good mark, I can’t say ‘ahh, it was all that revision’. I feel like I drift through exams- and life in general to some extent- on flukes. Lucky hunches, easy papers, bluffing my way out of things. Like it’s pure luck and coincidence that I’ve passed the test.
People around me don’t understand that- they say ‘but I watched you revise! You did enough!’ All I remember is that night I took off and that day in the library when I got too distracted and you see where I’m going with this.
But it’s all linked, isn’t it? Not thin enough is not pretty enough is not good enough is not smart enough is not enough, full stop. Yet we can look at somebody doing less than us, or eating more than us, and think ‘they are completely fine’. Isn’t that odd?
Eating issues seem to be built around this strange belief that we are completely different from everybody else- yet completely bland and forgettable. When I manage to say ‘I don’t want to be this person’ to my role as ‘the sick one’, I turn to ‘the clever one’. If I’m not ‘enough’, then nobody will want to be around me. And, of course- I can never be ‘enough’.
I suppose I just wanted to say that intake and weight aren’t the only aspect of life eating disorders and similar issues can warp. So if you find yourself automatically believing those negative truths about yourself – ‘I’m not a good enough person’- stop. Examine the evidence. Weigh it up. Instead of just accepting it as gospel truth and using it as another branch to beat yourself with, try and look at it objectively. Would you tell a friend that that mark was too low? Or that that meal was too much? Why on earth should it be different for you?
You can do things without making yourself go to extremes. You can be good at something without needing to be the best. It’s difficult as hell, and I’m still trying to get my head around it- but you aren’t superwoman. None of us are. And not giving yourself the credit you deserve isn’t going to make you do better- it’s just going to make you feel worse.