Archive for stress

You Can’t Force Things to Happen

It’s been tough getting to sleep the last few nights.

I’ll go to bed and turn off the light and then the thoughts start pouring in. I’ll worry that I didn’t do the right thing in any number of situations during the day or I’ll worry about the work I have to do the next day or I’ll worry that no matter what I do, I’ll never be closer to my dream of buying a house in the mountains.

It occurred to me last night while I was lying there though, that you can’t force sleep. If you try to fall asleep and see that you’re not, that’s just one more thing to worry about. The sleep will come, it always does and there’s no point in trying to force it to happen.

The thought then occurred to me that that notion is true for a lot of things, love, success, peace and life in general.

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Relearning to Love Yourself

I have a confession to make. I have a reminder on my phone that goes off every morning at 8 o’clock that says simply, “You’re awesome”. This might sound dumb but you’d be surprised how often I forget that fact.

This is just one tool in my arsenal of tricks that I use to combat the depression and paranoia that come with a mental illness.

I’ve been in some pretty dark places and I’ve thought many times about putting an end to things when I’m having a hard time but then every day at eight my phone vibrates and I’m reminded that I’m awesome.

Therapists and gurus talk about the power of positive self talk and I’ll be the first to admit that I have as hard a time talking nicely to myself as anyone else but I’d be lying if I said it doesn’t work. Read More →

It’s Ok to Take it Easy Sometimes

This past few weeks has been pretty chaotic for me.

Money has been an issue, I moved to a new city, my nephew was born, I got a new writing job, I had my 29th birthday, I had to housesit for a while and on top of everything else I’ve been working myself into a tizzy over a potential relationship which may or may not work out.

All said and done, I came to the realization last night that yes, I had done it, I had overwhelmed myself wholly and completely.

Stress can be a killer, even more so for someone who has a mental illness. Read More →

What To Do About Burn Out

We all know what it feels like when you’ve had enough. It’s that listless weary feeling of not wanting to proceed but knowing that you have to.

Some refer to it as ennui others simply call it burn out.

It happens when the stress of performing a certain task overrides its enjoyment and it can take place in every facet of your life, from your job, to your home life to your relationships.

Many people have trouble with burn out when they feel tired or obligated about something. The truth is, everyone has things they might not enjoy doing but are required to do to maintain their current life situation. Read More →

You Can’t Make Other People Happy

The one singular overarching experience of living with schizophrenia for me has been the ebbing and flowing of the paranoia that I feel on a daily basis. This paranoia is a worry and an anxiety that people are constantly making fun of me.

To say the least it’s been a rough road. There are times when I want so badly to connect with people but I’m terrified that they’re going to turn around and make fun of the way I look or the way I move or the way I talk that I have all but resigned myself to the delusion as a fact of life.

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How to Separate Your Delusions from Reality

I’ve come upon a situation recently where it was hard to tell if something I thought was happening was actually happening or if it was just my mind piecing together little pieces of coincidence into some grand, almost terrifying delusion.

Namely, and this is putting it lightly, I was under the impression that someone was spying on me, that they had put a tracker on my car and that they could read everything I was doing on my computer because they had somehow maliciously put some kind of malware on it that I didn’t know about.

Suffice it to say I was under the impression that this stuff was happening for a night or two before I recognized that it all may have just been a function of my paranoia.

In these kinds of situations it’s extremely hard to separate your delusions from the reality of the situation and I know this all too well. Read More →

Whatever You’re Dealing With, Just Know, It’ll Pass

Throughout my ten years of living with schizophrenia there have been times of great stress and great paranoia. There have been times where I’ve been so overwhelmed by delusion that I couldn’t eat. There have been times where I’ve been so anxious and worried about interactions that I’ve forgotten to breathe.

In all honesty I’ve spent a good deal of time in a place so scary that I wouldn’t wish it on an enemy.

I know what it’s like to be so consumed in the moment by things that you lose your grasp on reality and every single time, without fail those moments have passed and I’ve come out the other side.

That’s the point I want to make here.

The simple fact of the matter is that whatever hardship you’re facing, whether it’s delusions or paranoia or voices or hallucinations, in every instance, those moments have passed. They always have and they always will.

I realize this is an extremely hard thing to remember in the heat of the moment when you feel like you can’t breathe but if you can just ease your shoulders a bit and give it time, whatever you’re dealing with will pass.

If I can make any guarantees in this crazy messed up world, that’s it. That this will pass.

This is applicable in lesser moments of stress as well. Maybe you’re facing stress from your job or you’re in a painful crush or relationship. In every instance with a little bit of time and a few deep breaths these moments, these hardships will pass.

There is nothing you won’t be able to get through if you just give it a little time and a little care.

Any moment you’re facing where things seem insurmountable has to break at some point sometimes you have to break it, sometimes it breaks naturally but in each and every case, with a little time whatever you’re up against will pass and you’ll find yourself on the other side of it saying, “That wasn’t so bad.”

If there’s any advice you’ve gleamed from my years of writing trying to help people who are struggling it’s that.

There is no obstacle in this world besides death that you won’t be able to get through.

That’s one of the major lessons mental illness has in store for you when you’re diagnosed and it’s the one piece of advice I give to anyone who’s looking for help. Just know that with time, it’ll pass and in a year whatever you’re facing right now won’t even matter.

It’ll pass, it always does it always will.

Again I know how hard it is to realize that in the moment of something trying whether it’s seemingly insurmountable or just inconvenient, just having that little dose of awareness though can help you get through whatever you’re dealing with.

I’ve been through my share of hardship and I wish that they had told me in the hospital that it will take time but you can always get better, there’s plenty of time and there’s no rush in anything and whatever is happening will have it’s day and then it will leave you alone.

That’s just the way life works. Just know that it’ll pass.

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Trying to Handle The Stress of Obligation

I’ve been having some burnout recently. There was an article in Inc. Magazine last week that discussed a study showing that burnout might actually be depression. Personally I’ve found that to be true in small components.

With burnout there exists that same level of apathy and exhaustion when faced with impending tasks and deadlines and the same hopeless feeling that what you are doing isn’t getting you anywhere.

These are minor though, as I view depression as a serious manifestation of these issues as well intense sadness and suicidal ideation and I feel like I have a good handle on what separates the two having experienced both.

What I want to talk about today though is the point at which you experience burnout but can’t take steps to remedy it because it causes stress.

Stress is not a good thing for people with mental illness. I’ve talked about the light switch effect wherein too much stress automatically flips on paranoia and delusion regardless of the steps you take (medication/therapy) to combat these things. Read More →