List what ya love for anxious emergencies

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When I’m in a foul mood, it’s hard to remember what makes me happy. That’s why I like to keep silly photos on my phone of the people and animals I love.

 

I also like to keep a list on my phone of things I can do to cheer myself up.

  • Go for a walk
  • Read a book
  • Play with the cats
  • Grab a tea at a local coffee shop
  • Knit and listen to podcasts
  • Garden

It’s similar to what I used to do with keeping a gratitude board on my wall, but more specific in that it gives me actions to take when the anxiety takes over my mind and I can’t come up with a plan on my own.

This is especially helpful when other tricks–like encouraging negative thoughts to float away–aren’t working.

Recently, I’ve decided I need to add another list. Some days, I’m so motivated and pumped up about work, I feel like I can do everything I want to do and will be so successful. Other days, I have no faith in myself or my abilities. I become so self-conscious about what other people might be thinking about me and my work. I worry that I’m going to fail and wonder how I’ll survive.

So, I’m working on a list of things to motivate myself! Here’s what I’ve got so far:

My list is short. Clearly I need a little help building it. What do you do to get yourself excited about you and boost your confidence? I’d love suggestions!

More importantly, if you’ve got silly photos that you can’t help but laugh at, no matter how angry or anxious you are, I’d love if you could share them on Instagram, Twitter or Facebook and tag me @megjcrane!


Concussion update

I’m still very much concussed. I’m up to working two hours a day, 30 minutes at a time with two hour breaks in between though. Whooooop!

What’s been hardest is that I’m getting a small taste of life and it’s making me want more. I finish a half hour of work and start getting pumped up to do something else fun, like go for a run or cook or read, and then remember that the next two hours are all about rest. No screens. No reading. No thinking. Just sitting, listening to an audiobook and knitting something basic.

It gets harder when other people don’t understand. “I’m having a bad day and don’t think I can walk that far to meet you. Do you mind coming here?” The correct answer is “No problem,” or “That’s not going to work for me today. Can we reschedule?” Not “Why?” I’ve had this injury for three months and I’m beyond tired of it. I’m also beyond tired of talking about it and explaining what a concussion is, over and over. If I say I can’t do it, please just accept that and move on. I’m not avoiding that activity because I’m “hiding from the world” or being a brat. It’s because it’s not good for my healing brain.

Here’s what I need:
-Few messages, short and concise, only when there’s a reason, and space to answer in my own time when my brain is feeling up to it;
-No voicemails. For reals. My voicemail message even reminds you;
-Hangouts close to my home or with rides built in;
-Quiet–no yelling, no loud music; and
-Not being questioned when I say what I need.

Thanks to those who have been patient and understanding.

xoxo
Meg

My anxiety went away… sike!

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A few months ago, I went on meds. The Zoloft was just supposed to relieve some of my suffering for a few months while I found some ways to deal with myself. It wasn’t long before all my anxiety completely and totally dissolved. No more panic attacks, no sweaty palms when talking to new people. My heart beat was always normal unless I was exercising and there were no headaches for miles.

I was more confident and had an easier time talking to people, both folks I know and people I don’t. I even agreed to speak on a panel at Prairie Comic Fest, a commitment which would have landed me vomiting and crying in the bathroom a few years ago.

Life was great. I was cured!

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A wonderful photo by my Boston pal, Jenn Abbe. Click on the image for more of her work.

Ha ha ha ha ha!!!

What a silly thought.

The anxiety slowly crept back, although I ignored it until it mounted into a panic attack, leaving me sobbing in frustration. I thought it was gone. I thought I was done with the difficulty breathing and extreme nausea. WTF???

I was back in bed with a throbbing headache and overall feelings of unsteadiness. That was a place I never thought I’d be again.

Anxiety is emotionally, mentally and physically draining. The effort it takes to worry about and fight it off just leaves me more exhausted. So, I think I need to give in.

Dealing with anxiety is fucking hard. There’s no way around it. As much work as I do to be okay, I think I might probably forever have at least the odd anxious day. That understanding has come from talking to friends, reading what others have to say and knowing myself, and it’s fucking crushing.

But the more I accept that this is likely just how I’m going to be skipping through life, the easier I think it’s going to be to deal with it because I won’t be wasting energy having an internal temper tantrum every time I wake up in a panic.

I had a little chat with my doctor and she upped my dose. The plan is to get me to a place where I have almost no anxiety, keep me there for a year and then take a look at my life and discuss slowly coming off them.

That path will be much smoother, I think, now that I understand it’s going to be full of potholes and wrong turns.


podcast artwork4On this week’s episode of Ramblings of an Anxious Mess, I talk about how accepting anxiety as a part of my life and who I am has actually helped lessen its grip on me.