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Dear Cynthia... > Disappointment
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2 posts
Jan 21, 2007
2:19 PM
I'm writing in because I seem to be a big complainer lately.

I pick on my boyfriend for a number of things. Some of them are real but many little things just seem to be my way of interacting!

I'm unhappy with the work I'm producing and have no guidance or assurance that things will improve.

I'm in school for something I'm not sure I could be successful in and feel ashamed of my performance last semester. And can't let it go. I'm truly anxious about not being able to work in this field I'm studying if my work isn't competitive. but I also feel that I'm compelled to take up tasks regardless of how competitive I am. i take themup out of passion but that's only 20% of what will count to succeed professionally. What will matter is coming through with hard work ( which I don't enough lately) and skill.

At the same time, I'm working so hard on excelling technically, that creatively I don't take charge of the artwork and direct it. I end up with technically insufficient pieces and half the time they aren't what I meant to say, or don't fulfill the neccessity of making a statement.

To sum up, I seem to be unsatisfied with results but I don't think I'm justified in constantly complaining without doing the right things, or enough to fix what I'm unsatisfied with. I seem to be insecure whenever I have a moment to consider how things are going. the natural course of things is without serious disorder but less of a sense of connection and motivation than I'd like and often find in myself.
135 posts
Jan 24, 2007
7:54 AM

I've read your post several times now, trying to understand what you are struggling with. It sounds very complex, as well as very painful and difficult. In order to untangle this knotty puzzle, I would need to have much more information about your background, you career training and path, your relationships, your mental health, etc..

Motivation seems like a key issue for you, at least at the moment. This can be a symptom of depression, but it is one of the central reasons people come to therapy. Most people can read books to figure out what would improve their problems, but can't make themselves do whatever would help. Finding this motivation is much of what I help people do, though we may never even talk about it like that. What is in the way of doing what you need to do, and what allows you to have the ability to do what you need to do is a very complex process. The only rare exception to this I can think of is when the motivation issues are a direct result to a depression that is completely resolved with medication.

I might be able to tell you more about your own situation with more information, but ultimately, this is something you will need to discuss in person with a therapist, taking the time you need to untangle all the issues involved. Feel free to ask more questions, and/or give more information, if you want to start there.


3 posts
Jan 24, 2007
3:13 PM
Hi Cynthia,

Thanks for your response. You're confused about my posting, and I get lost myself sometimes. I don't know where it all begins. Today for example, I started a new job gig and while I always win these jobs, now that the work needs to be done, the overconfidence that helps me isn't as fun as the work. This isn't surprising but still the work must get done.

I just easily lose confidence. I have to make a presentation for a different job to sell myself and ... I'm wimping out.

The only thing that's ever helped is direct support, from someone in the flesh. But its like once they aren't there to say they believe in me, I don't feel up to it.

The alternative is when I don't have anyone to answer to, and no clear goal, I can feel the best reward from the creative work I do. I do it natually, without any demand on me. Once there's a contract and something is official...the fun is up.

I don't know if I don't want the responsibility and always let someone else have the credit, or control.

Though I'm not surprised you don't know what to tell you, I feel sad about it because these days it seems like no one sees a pattern in things, or knows what to do.

I've taken some actions that may help me, but they're slow, expensive and who knows yet if there will be results. sorry to be downer at the moment. Maybe I need a few extra zzz's.

136 posts
Jan 26, 2007
7:57 PM

What you describe in being able to motivate yourself when there is a person in the flesh to support you is exactly where your therapist would begin with you. Over time, that support would become integrated inside you, so you could do it for yourself without much effort.

It sounds like you feel very discouraged about things getting better. I want you to know that just because I don't know enough about you to know exactly what is going on with you doesn't mean I or another therapist wouldn't understand it and be able to help you with it once we collected more information. I hope you won't give up, and will seek some counseling. You don't have to do this all by yourself! Really.


4 posts
Jan 28, 2007
5:25 PM
Hi Cynthia,

Thanks again for your message. I felt bad dropping another piece of baggage. I have started seeing someone and while I'm not sure how deep it'll go, I do feel a sense of relief and ability to cope with daily things without getting dragged under. What you mentioned is what I'm hoping for - to find a way to have that sense of dialogue without neccessarily having to see a therapist forever. until that point, I'm planning to see a therapist forever :)

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Email: CynthiaLubow@yahoo.com 

 Cynthia W. Lubow, MFT

 For 30 years, compassionately helping people build self-confidence and feel happier.

 San Francisco East Bay Area Therapist

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