When I was in college, I spent most of my time isolated in the basement apartment of my boyfriend’s house. I had no friends, was working four jobs, and was holding myself to unrealistic expectations with my studies.
As you can imagine, my self-esteem was at an all-time low. However, I was in classic denial. I convinced myself that everything was normal and that something good would eventually come along to make all my unhappiness worth it in the end.
Unfortunately, this meant that I was always looking for something to blame my discontentment on. Instead of looking at the core of my unhappiness (which included an emotionally manipulative relationship, years of self-denial, unfounded guilty feelings, and unhealthy attachments), I became highly irritable over really stupid things.
Like, seriously stupid. I kid you not, Cheryl.
For example, a major pet peeve I had living in that basement was my boyfriend constantly coming down and making a mess of it. Keeping my space clean and organized was the only control I felt I had, and he not only took away from any time to myself, but he was always cluttering the space up.
One particular habit he had was taking his socks off and flinging them in two opposite directions, and then leaving them on the floor even when he went back upstairs. It was annoying, but with my major disconnect with my bacon (i.e. my truest, badass self), it was more than just a minor nuisance; it was a frickin’ inconvenience of astronomical proportions that justified (in my mind) martyr-like reactions and full-blown anger.
I’d even fantasize about bunching his socks up and shoving them down his throat. Yeah, Karen; it was bad.
When you haven’t spent a lot of time connecting with and embracing your bacon, taking care of yourself and fostering your unique interests and passions, you find unhappiness in everything. As a result, you become bitter and jealous of other people’s externally apparent happiness. Hence, your fuse is but an inch-long twig that’s constantly blowing up over miniscule, unimportant things.
In my case, I was always looking for a reason to be upset with my boyfriend because I didn’t want to admit that my unhappiness was due to deeper issues. But it just made me more discontent, which continued to amplify my irritability.
As bad as the sock issue was, you should’ve seen me the time he accidentally spilled my Spaghetti-Os… Shots were fired that day, boy oh boy…
Questions to Ask Yourself When You’re Highly Irritable
If you’re feeling irritable, you can bet your bacon tuchus that your body is trying to tell you something. So the important thing to remember is this: DO NOT FEEL GUILTY ABOUT FEELING IRRITABLE. Yes, you should apologize to the people you direct your irritability towards if that happens. But the feeling of irritability itself is not your fault; it’s a warning. You simply need to realize that your body is desperately trying to communicate to you that something needs to change, and then identify what that message is.
For me, the message was that I was in an unhappy, manipulative relationship, needed therapy to address my depression (which I denied I had), and seriously needed to start taking care of my beautiful bacon.
Feeling irritable sucks, and it certainly doesn’t do your bacon any good. So if you’re feeling this way, but don’t know why, here are some questions you should ask yourself:
- Are you happy with yourself and who you are? (If not, you need to start some self-care and meditation routines ASAP.)
- Does a particular person trigger your irritability? (If so, ask yourself why, and dig in deep.)
- Could your irritability be coming from some unfortunate circumstances in your past? (For example, a childhood trauma, abuse, etc.)
- Are you pursuing things that you truly want in life? (For example, it took me a while to realize that my passions include comedy, writing, and teaching; I wasn’t allowing myself to pursue them, which contributed to my irritability.)
- What is something you can do to help understand the root of your irritability? (For example, therapy is a highly effective way to identify and understand the reasons behind any emotions you’re feeling. My therapist is epic at this, and helps me get in touch with my bacon when my thoughts get jumbled up.)
Not only does irritability hurt other people in your life, but it also distances you further and further away from your bacon. And that be no good, Skippy. Don’t live a life where you’re constantly yelling at people to put their damn socks away. Live a life that you know you deep-down desire and will kick some serious bacon ass.