Relief is often confused with happiness.
I forget where I first read or heard that sentiment.
But I remembered it again the other morning when I found myself avoiding yoga because it meant that I would not get to tackling my inbox quite as early.
It’s not that I had anything truly urgent happening.
Nothing was going to be lost because I delayed responding for an hour.
It’s a siren song that is almost impossible to resist. Email feeds our psychological needs in many ways, but one that I had not thought much about before is how much it feeds my need for relief.
When I respond to all those hovering emails, I stop feeling like there is a whole group of people walking with me wherever I go, tapping me on the shoulder until I pay attention to them and take care of them.
When I hit send, a little dose of relief washes over me. I’m no longer making someone wait. I’m no longer disappointing anyone.
This realization doesn’t mean that I should avoid email altogether…it just means that I should be cognizant of how often I feed my need for relief and what I’m potentially giving up because of it.