Day 1: Me
I haven’t been feeling myself for a while. I feel as though I’ve completely regressed in all the work that I did to improve my mental health. Looking back, I think this happened over the period of more than a year with many different events triggering further setback. I wouldn’t say I’m depressed, but I would say my stress and anxiety are at an all time high. This became most evident during this Christmas break on our annual trip to be with my husband’s family. One event with two comments set my mood for the entire trip. To be fair, I was in my hormonal swing with my period imminent.
After two days of seclusion and rest (thank you Eddie for being sick)….
Today is Day one. Day one to taking back myself. Day one to becoming the woman I know I can be. Day one to overcoming stress and anxiety for fun and ease. Day one of the rest of my life.
I don’t have all the answers or a clearly defined plan. What I do have is the desire and courage to say I am going to experiment and move through this. I am going to be me. I am me.
It isn’t going to be easy, nothing is. I have to make some serious changes in my life to focus on me again. First thing I’m going to do is drastically reduce the amount of time I spend watching TV. Second thing is getting my nutrition back in check. Third, I am going to spend time every single day working on me.
Today didn’t start off the best. I woke up stressed. I have no idea why. Once I realized I was already stressed for the day, I actually got to thinking back and realized this is how I’ve started every day for as long as I can recall in the past few months. Stressed. Wake up stressed. Go to bed stressed.
So, I started this morning by getting ready early. I have no commitments until this evening, but I am committing to myself to get ready and feel good. I put on relaxing instrumental music. I cleared thought from my brain and just listened while I showered. I wouldn’t let myself feel. I wanted to just exist in the relaxation. It actually helped. To take it even further, while I was getting ready, I picked an episode from the Anxiety Coaches Podcast that I thought was relevant. I truly believe there is something in the universe that guides us when we need it most and this was one of those moments.
Gina, the host, focused on the work of Dr. Sarno and Steve Ozanich relating to TMS and anxiety. The part that stuck out to me the most and what prompted me to listen to the podcast twice, was this:
“Thinking has replaced feeling. So they become thinkers so they can’t be hurt by their feelings. Thinking has become their coping mechanism.”
I didn’t write down the comment exactly, but as it struck me. They were referring to those who have anxiety so that is the definition of ‘they’ and ‘their’ in the paraphrased sentences above.
I am one of those that is being described. All I do anymore is think. I think that I’m feeling, but after listening to the podcast, I really don’t think I have felt anything in a while. As I look back, I believe that I have been thinking emotion as it relates to situations. I haven’t actually been thinking through how the situations truly affect me, I just think a quick response and go there. I try to apply only logic to EVERYTHING. I put myself into a position where I couldn’t be and wasn’t fun because in my thought process, everything had to follow a strict logic. That logic in my mind was things being perfect or along a black and white line. Everything I encountered had this flawed logic applied.
No wonder I have been eternally stressed. I was applying flawed thinking to my life rather than living in the moment or in the feeling.
Today is day one that I am attempting to pull myself out of my head and into my life. I am working to pull myself out of the fear that I am and never will be good enough to be part of Eddie’s family. I am pulling myself out of the fear that if I actually shared with my family or friends things in my life, I am a burden to them. I am pulling myself out of the fear that if I share with family or friends, they will think less of me or judge me. I am pulling myself out of the fear that if I say anything to anybody, they will go talk shit with others and prevent others from wanting to actually get to know me. I am pulling myself out of the fear that I am not worth being loved.
I know some of you will read this and think ‘holy shit this girl has got problems’. Yeah, yeah I do. They are from a lifetime of stress and anxiety telling me false stories that I believe. It is easier to believe what our mind tells us as it is trying to protect us from subconscious fears. It is easier to hide in our thoughts more than in real life.
But today is day one. I am taking back my life from my subconscious and I am going to live my best life. I am going to put the work in. I am going to move through this.