Why You Should Sleep On Impulsivity

I am an impulsive person. Whenever I get an idea in my head, I get really excited about it, don't necessarily think it all the way through, and just do it. No, this was not the case with my tattoos; okay, maybe one of them. In all seriousness, not all of my decisions are made on a whim. However, impulsivity is something that I really struggle with and have actively been trying to improve on.

The concept of "you should just sleep on it" has really rubbed me the wrong way my entire life. Honestly, my indifference towards it probably stems from the fact that I was very privileged throughout my childhood and whenever I wanted something, I usually got it. Wow, I sound like Veruca Salt; just bear with me. I've also always been a very impatient person, so whenever I did desire something or want to do something, I usually got it or did it immediately. I am just making myself sound like the most desirable woman aren't I; yes, if anyone wants to date my impulsive, impatient ass let me know! I promise I'm not going to spend this whole post pointing out all of my "flaws" to you all; however, I do want you to know that impulsive behavior is a struggle of mine and I think it's paramount to be able to call yourself out on your flaws before you are able to fix them. 

Although sleeping on an idea, a feeling, or an action has been a hard concept for me to wrap my head around, I've been realizing just how important it is to incorporate into your life. A lot of my impulsivity is manifested in my feelings. It's not necessarily in the sense of, "I wear my heart on my sleeve," and "I react out of emotion." It's more so that my feelings are often fleeting and before I allow myself to realize that, I act on them. I don't want to get too personal for the sake of respecting someone else's privacy, but to give you some reference, after being in a long term relationship and that ending, my feelings/thoughts were like a rollercoaster (as everyone's are after a break up). At the time, I felt like "well, I won't be able to get this thought or feeling out of my head until I act on it or say it," but in hindsight, if I would've used the let me sleep on this thought/feeling method, I probably would've saved me and the other person a lot of hurt. You see, being impulsive is selfish in a way. It's drive is solely in the benefit of you and in result, you become extremely inconsiderate of anyone or anything else. Impulsive behavior doesn't stop to think about how this idea or action would impact another person or your job/life. 

Now don't get me wrong, possessing a little bit of impulsivity isn't always a bad thing; in fact, it can actually be beneficial! Being impulsive can help you avoid overthinking a situation or a decision and allow you to truly follow your heart. But if you're unsure of something, if you don't know how you feel about a person or a situation or an idea, that is when impulsive behavior can be detrimental. I told you at the beginning of this post that I am an impulsive person, but I am ACTIVELY working on it. I've been doing this by reminding myself to incorporate the "sleep on it" method into any feeling, decision, thought, or action that I am not 100% sure about. If after 3 days (minimum) of letting whatever I'm unsure of simmer and marinate, I'm STILL unsure about it, then I'll give myself another 3 days. Usually, after about a week I find that I've come to terms with how I'm feeling. Sometimes, I'll have a day where I'm like "I really feel this way about this idea or this situation," and then I'll wake up the next morning and be like WHAT was I THINKING? Because I'm so up and down with how I feel, you can imagine how much conflict, hurt, and frustration this has saved me. Hell, not only me, but everyone in my life. If you're reading this and you're like OK this is ME, I strongly encourage you to sit down with yourself and figure out how you work. You might only need to sleep on something for a night, or it might take you 2-3 weeks to really grasp your thoughts on something; but I believe figuring out how long you need and how your feelings/thoughts operate is a necessity. 

Listen, we're all human. We're all going to do things, say things, get tattoos (just me?), out of impulse. That's okay. However, if impulsive behavior is creating messes for you often, please allow yourself some time to let yourself come to terms with your feelings. Trust me, if you still want that tattoo, or think it's a good idea to text your ex boyfriend after a week of thinking about it, then do it. Life's short, but it's not short enough to jump into things without thinking them through. Your actions and feelings will have come from a much more informed and clear mind set after sleeping on it, and you'll wake up feeling fabulous about it.