Liking Yourself, Mental Health Awareness

Be weird and enjoy it.

Those of us with mental illnesses have no need for extra reasons to feel down. More often than not, it seems, we tend to feel down about ourselves. It’s a very hard habit to break. Make a mistake at work? I suck. Say something awkward in a conversation? I’m a weirdo. Did I forget to do something?! I’m an idiot! People like us are hard on ourselves.

I’ve recently been trying to change how I look at myself. It has taken me years but I think I’m starting to win. I’ve actually gotten to the point where I’m starting to feel okay with myself. I’m starting to accept myself for who I am. I’m acknowledging the parts of my personality I think people find weird and I’m being okay with being different. That’s huge for me.

I won’t sit here and say it was easy but I definitely don’t want anything to think it’s impossible. You CAN like yourself. I used to let my weird quirks hold me back. It doesn’t help that I’ve had people point them out to me. You know what did help? Taking a good look at the people who have always inspired me. I realized that some of the people I’ve looked up to throughout my life have also been a little weird or at least different as far as social conventions go. It made me realize that being different doesn’t mean I’m unlikable. Standing out doesn’t have to be something I’m ashamed of- I can embrace it.

You can be different. You can stand out. Don’t let it be the thing that holds you back. Let it be the thing that empowers you. Nobody ordinary ever made headlines. Ever hear of a boring inventor? No! They’re all eccentric and had their own unconventional ways of doing things. Read up on some of the most successful people in the world. They have a unique way of doing things or thinking about things and look where that got them. Compare that to your office full of coworkers. Everyone in your office is doing things the same way, afraid to go outside of the box. Go outside of your box! Decorate your box. Invite people to your box. Get a new box that has lop-sided walls and doesn’t close right.

Society tends to make people feel bad for being different and yet being different is how you stand out. In business, you have to stand out or you’ll never beat your competition. The point I’m getting at here is that from now on the next time you start feeling bad about how different you are from other people just remember- you could be boring like everyone else.

Go out there and be weird.

Mental Health Awareness

How to Saturday

Today is Saturday, my favorite day of the week. Why? Because I get to do nothing all day if I choose. I usually wake up when I want, relax for a bit with some coffee and about an hour or two of video games, then go out for some groceries and then to the gym. That’s usually about it.

When coming home from my grocery run today I noticed the parking lot in my complex was emptier than usual, even for a Saturday. I thought, “Well, it IS Memorial Day weekend so people are probably going out of town for…I don’t know, stuff.” Then it dawned on me- what DO people do on Saturdays? Am I the only one that uses my days off to sit around and avoid leaving the house? Holy crap, am I turning into THAT guy?

I used to do stuff. I used to have things to do on Saturday and now I use it as an excuse to specifically do nothing. I especially avoid socializing unless it’s with someone from out of town who I really want to see. At this point I’ve realized what my anxiety has turned into. I’ve always been somewhat of a hermit but I still used to go out and enjoy myself. Now the thought of leaving the house makes me nervous. The thought of going out in public makes me nervous. Even going out to see family and friends makes me uncomfortable.

My anxiety has grown into a monster that steals joy from my life. There’s nothing wrong with enjoying your days off indoors with a good game but spending every Saturday by yourself while watching everyone else go out and have fun makes you feel kind of weird.

This makes me think maybe I am letting my anxiety control me too much. It might be time for me to take back control before I become even more reclusive and socially awkward. Don’t get me wrong, I’m still going to prefer staying in with a game every now and then but I think getting used to going out and enjoying time with other people will do me a lot of good.

If you are also falling into this same rut, try to take little steps out of your comfort zone to see if that helps. That’s what I intend to do and I’m sure I’ll be back on here to give an update on the progress.

Mental Health Awareness, Uncategorized

Racing Thoughts

I don’t know about you but I deal with a lot of restlessness. More specifically, though, I’m talking about racing thoughts. If you’re unfamiliar with that term it means that several different ideas or thoughts are scrambling to take priority in your mind leaving you feeling like you have to provide a solution to all of them at once. This is maddening and is not only draining but also makes you feel very anxious. This is because every thought is fighting for priority so all of them are floating around the top, jam-packed.

Think about it like a computer. Imagine you have multiple OS’s installed on one computer and somehow it was trying to run all of them at once. For those of you who are not tech savvy it means you’ll get burned out quick and probably give up out of stress.

For some of us, this is a regular occurrence. It sucks down your energy and somehow leaves you with no completed task! How frustrating is that?! While I don’t have a silver bullet for you, I do have a suggestion that has helped me when my mind wouldn’t shut up. Write or type it all out.

Really? Yes, really. For me, it is like acknowledging the thoughts and giving them attention so your brain calms down about them. Then, with the permanence of having them on paper or a word/notepad doc, you know you can address them later and that usually helps relieve some of the anxiety. It might not completely alleviate the issue but it does have a soothing effect.

Give it a shot the next time you find yourself filled with rampant thoughts, unsure of how to deal with them. Take a second, stop what you are in the middle of, and start typing (or writing) away. If you have a lot of tasks you need to complete – write those out. If you’re just trying to relax and have something nagging at you – write that down. You can treat it like a journal entry. Sometimes that in itself helps you feel better. You might start working a problem out as you’re writing it and realize a solution, thus putting the thought to rest.

Writing in general can be therapeutic and I highly recommend it for any big thinkers but for people who frequently deal with racing thoughts I definitely suggest you give it a shot and see if you get some sort of relief from it.