Mindful Monday - What Do You Do When Your Box of Tricks Is Empty?

in mindfulmonday •  7 months ago  (edited)

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Happy Monday Steemverse!

Well, it is still Monday where I am LOL. I hope everyone is well. I guess I veered a little off on my song referenced titles. What Do You Do When Your Box of Tricks Is Empty? I did have Felix the Cat playing in my head.

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What am I referring to as 'my bag of tricks'? Simply, the coping skills I use when my anxiety is high, a panic attack occurs, depression hits or when my brain just goes off to what feels like another universe. I had panic attacks for several years before I found out that's what it was. When I learned about that I learned a few things to do to work on calming down.

I have heard people say that a severe panic attack is like having a heart attack. I can now see why they say that. I know it's not a heart attack because, my pain is not in my heart even though it is in my chest. I don't have all of the symptoms of a normal panic attack for me. Of course I did check in with my Dr. and my therapist which they both said the same thing, panic attack.

'Use your coping skills.' 'Relax' Yeah, ok, sure, whatever you say. Like I haven't? Just thoughts, no I didn't say these. Part of the reason for the intensity is because I am being taken off of my anti-anxiety medication because I have been on too high of a dose for too long. They are only meant to be a year tops and I have been on this one almost 4 yrs.

My usual set of coping skills are using the Senses countdown to come back to calm during an episode. (I'll share that at the end for those of you that have not seen this.) If that doesn't work I try to focus on my breath. If I can, I go outside during all of this since it seems to help. As for activities throughout the day, I listen to music, watch TV, play a game, read, clean, shower, paint, and meditate to name just a few. I have gone through all of the above and oddly have not had much luck.

Am I distracted? Yes. Can I focus? No. Am I calm? Yes. Am I overthinking? Not really. All my reality checks are ok. I cannot seem to focus for very long. I get distracted easily. This does not help at all when someone is trying to meditate or find a calmer state. I focus on my breath, my breathing becomes erratic. Normally, when this happens my brain is going a mile a minute on everything but what I am doing. This has not been the case.

The last attack I had was on Thursday. I had gotten home from 2 interviews, it was 99 degrees outside (on the @bengy scale that would be 4564848454545415 F'n HOT 😁 . for everyone else 37.2 c ) the dog went crazy when I walked in the door, during which I was mauled. After all of the chaos, it hit like a ton of bricks. Why not during? After I calmed down I thought about what is going on. I have not been sleeping. I had been sleeping for like 2 hrs a night for at least a week. No naps during the day. It's understandable why it happened. It is the length of time this has been going on and getting gradually worse.

I made myself sit in front of the TV watch things I have been wanting to watch and not let myself get on the computer or fill myself with busy work. That night I slept for 6 hours. I had a 'normal' day the next day, I followed up on applications, I did my busy work and I had a very restless 6 hours. So the rest of the weekend. I stayed off the computer. I didn't do any of the busybody cleaning and such. I allowed myself to be lazy. In doing so. I have slept 8 hours the past 2 nights and starting to feel better.

The ideals I have in my head are/were playing war with each other. Due to the depression, I can't allow myself to sit and think or dwell. To combat the anxiety I need to sit and clear my mind, which I can't because my mind doesn't seem to stop. To keep it occupied all of the time is draining. So, I kept my brain busy enough to not allow outside thought and inactive enough to breathe.

So many times I have mentioned how we need to listen to our bodies that it gives us clues when we need to change a behavior. I keep repeating it so I remember, not to drive you all crazy. Since I have been in control of my days and have some structure to them, I am in control a lot more. Less stress, less worry and more content with me. The idea of losing that is ultimately what set me off. No one should ever be this tired. No one should ever have to feel they cannot live their lives on their own terms.

So to answer my own question, What to do when your box of tricks is empty? Stop looking for tricks. Stop looking for answers. Live life on your terms, whatever that means to you. When you stop and start looking at life as moments, it changes your perspective (whoa deja vu moment I think I have said this before). Work on living those moments. Sometimes that moment is to chill out in front of the TV.

I almost forgot #thoughtfuldailypost Just for you @wesphilbin unless this is too much thought? LOL

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Thank you for the best wishes! I wish you to remember that you are always the best version of yourself. Live and enjoy! Experience how the plot unravels.

Thank you very much @spellmaker. I will remind myself.

Last panic attack I experienced that I could think of is before a medical procedure that was done to me. I couldn't breathe, wanted to reschedule the procedure and go home. My wife got me to calm down and relax. Panic attacks are a serious thing, hope things are better for you now.

Thank you @watersnake101. I am doing fine. It just is a little worrisome to have an underlying issue to have it pop up like that. I guess I am more afraid of going back to work than I thought. The area I live in has not been kind to me in that aspect, as you can tell. Just have to get up and keep chugging along. Process the events as they happen rather than get blown off track when something does.

Be careful with yourself dear .... that bengy scale is a different one haha

It is a tricky one to say the least 😁

Awesome post. I've started getting anxiety attacks quite late in life so never really knew what it was for a long time. Your tips are very helpful and insightful. Thank you for sharing this. ❤️

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Thank you @dkkarolien. I never understood the severity of them before. I sure do now.

You're doing a great coping skill right now - writing.

And BTW, love @Bengy's stuff too.

Namaste, JaiChai

Thank you @jaichai. I do forget that at times.

Aww I am so sorry you’re going thru this. I was on meds for 6 months, I use CBD products now, when needed. I try to prevent these horrible attacks. When I feel unease, I massage my hands and feet, I hold ice cubes in my hand, I sing a familiar song, anything to distract my fear and empty my brain. Those racing thoughts are disgusting. And every night I drink ‘sleepy time’ tea. I convinced myself that the tea will help me sleep. And you know what? Any tea will do it, if you believe in that. Obviously caffeine free. 😊

I have a great chamomile tea. I had run out :( I need to get my night time routine set back up. I would drink my tea, 'take my meds', read and then doze off. Sometimes the book would be too good to put down LOL. I try to keep my bed and bedroom free from electronics. I have my ipad there to use for music, that's about it. I'll put on native music, shamanistic, singing bowls and such just to keep the tone of my room soothing.

I've been wanting to try CBD oil for a few different things. I know it sounds crazy, but I have a bit of apprehension since I am allergic to marijuana 🙄 I don't know what aspect I am allergic to. The last thing I need is to have my throat seize up while spewing (had to choose a less gross term) it is not fun. I haven't tried the ice cubes, but have done the massage usually with coconut oil.

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I had no idea that you got anxiety so badly. It's a good idea that sometimes, it's just time to relax and stop fighting it... Wasted energy is energy that isn't there when you need it most.

By the way, I think you have misapplied the bengy imperial to logical conversion. It is a mathematical function that is a one way function, applied on a logical function it spits out the relevant and correct gobbledygook faceroll scaling. Applied in the reverse direction it is likely to result in nonsense that is a mathematical artifact rather than a reflection of the physical world. Coomon rookie mistake, but pros have been also ben known to forget this!

Yeah,it's been under control for the most part. You get so used to fighting all of the time, you forget the simple things like letting it run its course.

A little miscalculation. I promise to fully embrace the bengy imperial standard fully.

I had no idea that you got anxiety so badly. It's a good idea that sometimes, it's just time to relax and stop fighting it... Wasted energy is energy that isn't there when you need it most.

By the way, I think you have misapplied the bengy imperial to logical conversion. It is a mathematical function that is a one way function, applied on a logical function it spits out the relevant and correct gobbledygook faceroll scaling. Applied in the reverse direction it is likely to result in nonsense that is a mathematical artifact rather than a reflection of the physical world. Coomon rookie mistake, but pros have been also ben known to forget this!