January 26, 2023

How to Stop Feeling Suffocated by the Monotony of your Life.


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I’ve been wresting with a feeling recently.

It’s one that has come and gone over the years. Some years more profoundly than others.

It tiptoes in, a faint whisper against my cheek as I wash the dishes after dinner or straighten the blankets before bed.

There are times when the feeling lingers, not in a nagging way but as a timid reminder.

A reminder that I am currently living the life that I used to wish for.

Most days, I’m sad to say, I miss the signs completely.

I get caught up in the day-to-day, the routine, the things that seem so pressing in the moment and end up just being something else I check off my to-do list.

I complain about how tired I feel. Or stress about what I’m going to make for dinner. Or grumble about needing to vacuum again…because didn’t I just do that last week?

My days become about the minutiae. The responsibilities. The technicalities of being alive.

And then the whisper comes again and I remember all the days that once felt empty.

The days I felt lonely. The days I felt lost. The days I wondered if I’d ever find my purpose. The days I wondered if I even had one.

The days I felt like I was suffocating through the monotony of my life.

What’s strange—or maybe the most normal thing on the planet—is that the monotony existed then, exists now, and probably always will in some form, but the reality of my life has changed. In some ways, dramatically.

It’s in those moments that the whisper becomes a booming voice in my ear.

A voice screaming at me to wake up. To notice the life I’ve created for myself. To notice the love I’m surrounded by daily. To notice the peace that can come from meaningful routine—from a life that may change slowly but will change, surely.

To notice all the ways the universe heard my prayers and said “Yes.”

And then this voice reminds me that someday in the future, when I’m drowning in the minutiae of completely different days and a life that may or may not look like the one I have now, these are the days I’ll look back on with a mix of sadness, gratitude, and longing.

But it also reminds me that each day doesn’t exist in the future or the past. That the quiet happiness of a life well-lived happens in every moment we allow ourselves to notice fully.

So that’s where I’ll start.


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