What... did I do today?
Just one of those days...
It was a happy one non the less. Today is a random ramble- if you want coherent read another post!
Biography of a nobody day 48. February 17th 2021.
Have you ever started scrolling through social media and then abruptly realised you have been sat on the toilet watching people fall over for 90 minutes... Well, I had an entire day a little like that.
I can't really put my finger on it. Alex and I have played. I have done some research on affiliate links. I will do a large post on that tomorrow. I have written up yesterday's blog post... I played with some crypto and stocks... I cooked... I watched a little TV... I walked... Rusty?...
How the hell is it 2am again? I am definitely exercising before bed tonight- I have done barely any exercise this week and I will be back at work soon 15kg heavier with less muscle. Meh. I am 10-15 years the junior of most of the other lecturers I know... Though I am three years the senior of my manager... how does that work?
I am feeling better- mentally.
Let me first note that my mental state is improving. I feel easily 100x better than I did a month ago. I am feeling optimistic. I am making plans. I am regularly calling friends and family. I am on an upwards spiral and that is incredible. It is worrying me though that this is how I am feeling due to not being at work? Well, I say worrying... I am not worried about returning to work anymore though I am concerned that is because I am not remembering actually doing work and more the fact that I will have an element of physically socialising? By the by, not feeling sick or instantly disconnected at the idea of work is great.
I can also tell that I am feeling happier because I am making people laugh again- I had forgotten how great that felt. I can't tell whether it is just because I am talking to more people again so I have more opportunity to make people laugh- or whether it is because I feel like my brain is nowhere near as cloudy and I have twice as much clarity so my positivity and humour are shining through? No idea.
I guess giving yourself the opportunity to have fun- then having it- go hand in hand...
Why am I feeling better... Mentally?
You know what... I have no idea. Lifes big shit things keep piling up. They aren't going away- but my ability to handle them is literally tenfold what it was a month ago. As far as external emotional pressures go I am feeling a little like a teenager again.
I suppose I have forced so many healthy coping methods and recovery techniques into my life that if I wasn't starting to notice a bit of an uplift then I would need to consider medication. Not that there is anything wrong with that- but I don't even like taking paracetamol so it would be the last step for me.
I have started therapy. Therapy has recommended increasing my oxygen flow by exercising, walking, cleaning- whatever- just physically move more. Therapy has also recommended I embrace some forms of creativity to give my brain something positive to overthink rather than bad thoughts and terrible memories. I have started writing, reading, researching and working with others online. It has been a healthy escape. Once I started doing all of those I found I was writing how I felt... Then I would post it on a site I made... This site. Once the world had the opportunity to see it- who am I kidding I think my site has had 110 visitors- I have felt good... I can now confidently tell other people how I have been feeling without any deep internal shame or feelings of weakness. I say other people- I mean close friends and family. I haven't been messaging people I haven't spoken to in years typing 'HEY I HAVE BEEN DEPRESSED, COME READ ABOUT IT'.
I think I have something here...
Is it just that? Removing the pressure of skirting around the subject- or dodging it- with people I love. Answering 'Yeah I am ok' or 'Yeah I am doing well' around a month ago was just a flat out lie. So I stopped answering my phone to people. I stopped talking to people- and I definitely stopped calling people or seeking interaction. The more I did that the more the questions of 'are you ok' came and the more I doubled down with a 'Yeah' when realistically I was feeling worse. Now I am actually feeling pretty good- so when people ask and actually genuinely want to know... Well, I can tell them. Yeah, I am feeling good- I am currently signed off from work though. I never would have told people that before, out of embarrassment. If people are genuinely interested as to why I will tell them. Then I say- I started counselling to process some stuff and it has worked wonders- I am feeling much better.
Because I have removed the invisible rock from my mind that was blocking me from sharing how I actually felt... Which probably made it worse... I all of a sudden am enjoying talking to people again. I don't feel perfect- but I am happier- So I am having a laugh with friends. I am catching up with family. The more I interact again knowing that nothing is off-limits if I am asked the better I feel. It was like I was holding onto a secret and so that I avoided telling anyone I just avoided them.
Why didn't I just tell people before?
To be honest, looking at it now with fresh eyes, it is because I was weak. I was too weak to admit that I needed help so I avoided the questions that would result in help or worry. I was ashamed to be struggling and I thought that it made me less of a person to need help emotionally- especially as a guy.
I now realise it is far weaker to need help and avoid it than it is to just need help.
Needing help isn't weak. Wanting help isn't weak. What is weakness anyway? One of my favourite quotes (it is actually from an anime- don't judge me) is:
"Being weak is nothing to be ashamed of. Staying weak is"
If you know you have a problem and you aren't willing to try EVERYTHING to fix it- then that is a real weakness. I have been open and honest and it has freed so much pressure from my head it is insane! I have sought help, structure and healing in so many different ways that obviously some of them have started to work. The more chances you give yourself to feel better- the more likely it is to happen. Some may not help- shit, some have made me feel worse at times- but my distance travelled in my emotional strength and mental wellbeing is phenomenal. I am starting to feel stronger. I am strong.
I just wish I hadn't ignored it, pretended it wasn't there or covered it up for so long- it has given me so much more to heal from. See it as compounding interest on a debt. The longer you pretend it isn't something that needs fixing- the longer it is going to take to fix. Debt can tear you apart.