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About 10 months ago, my sorority sisters agreed to have a group trip to New York City. And I panicked. I immediately thought about all the work I had to do, how I wouldn’t be able to work that weekend if I needed to and how I simply didn’t have enough time.

Seriously. 10 months ago.

As the time for their visit grew nearer, my anxiety and stress began to build. It wasn’t that I didn’t want to see them. They are like family to me and we always have fun together. But this time was different because they were coming to a City that I was a 20 minute bus ride from. So, this wasn’t a vacation. I wasn’t getting the chance to get away. And that meant, for some incredibly ridiculous subconscious reason, that I wasn’t allowed to have fun that weekend.

In fact, before their visit, I hadn’t allowed myself to have fun in months. Weekend after weekend, even if I didn’t have any work to do, I would stay in. I was too tired to go out or I just didn’t want to do anything. In reality, on a subconscious level, I was telling myself that if I wasn’t doing work, I wasn’t allowed to do anything else.

As a litigator working in a profession where success is determined by every tenth of an hour billed, I had somehow convinced myself that every hour not billing should be an hour recovering from billing. Every time I had a commitment that was not work or Bar Association related, I crashed at home. And now, here were my sorority sisters, attempting to make me have fun and all I wanted to do was run and hide.

Then, the weekend happened. All my fears came true: I had fun. A lot of it. And I enjoyed the hell out of it. And I finally realized what I was doing to myself made absolutely no sense.

But that’s what happens when you are stuck in an illogical subconscious pattern. Your subconscious is there to protect you and it protects you no matter how irrational your feelings may be. I am a workaholic, a perfectionist, and an overachiever, and my subconscious protects me from anything that can stop me from attaining the goals associated with those illogical titles. The last thing it would want me to do is take time out to enjoy myself. To my subconscious, the only options were work or reset. Nothing in between. The NYC weekend, however, snapped me out of it.

This is why, the affirmation “life is fun” is so important to me. It reminds me that there is more to life than the work I am doing and that when I have the desire to just crash when I get home or avoid spending quality time with people I care about, it is often better and healthier for me to get up and go out.

So, if you are feeling resistant to going out with friends, family or your significant other, try to implement the affirmation “life is fun” into your mind and just get out there and allow yourself to enjoy yourself!