Don't Feel Your Feelings

Don’t dream your dreams. Don’t feel your feelings. — My mom

My family gets frazzled. I’m sure other people get frazzled too, but my family seems to specifically use the word frazzled.

I talk to my mom about everything: careers and love-interests and social-awkwardness and pigeons and everything else. And when I’m deflated or afraid or frazzled she often says, “Don’t dream your dreams. Don’t feel your feelings.”

Because, yeah, my dreams and feelings are often worthless. What if I don’t become a rockstar? Don’t dream — play music for fun. What if The Girl doesn’t like me back? Don’t dream — she has her own wants and needs. Why am I so out of shape? Don’t feel — exercise. What if I don’t make money? Don’t feel — be clever.

And this is not some r/wowthanksimcured mumbo-jumbo. Life is hard and emotions are messy and not entirely voluntary and usually legitimate.

But every once-and-a-while, my mom reminds me that I don’t have to identify with my all of my feelings. I don’t have to materialize all of my fantasies right now. I don’t need to be frazzled.

Sometimes, when I’m tired of holding on to things, she reminds me that it’s okay to let go.