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A is for anger

At least a few times a week I have decided to challenge myself, by giving myself an alphabetical theme to blog on. Each theme will be related to living with mental illness/ physical disability. I am also going to do the same challenge on my FBL blog Lifelovesandlipgloss.wordpress.com , although often using different topics for the different blogs.

I chose to write about anger first, because it is something that I struggle with a great deal.

Expressed anger

My experience of anger as a child, my parent’s violence and emotional abuse, taught me how much expressed anger can hurt others, so I tend to BOTTLE IT UP.

Triggers

My anger is mainly triggered by memories from the past which leave me feeling POWERLESS and UNABLE TO ESCAPE, stress which also leaves me feeling BACKED INTO A CORNER as well as UNABLE TO COPE, and being unable to cope leads to a great deal of FRUSTRATION, which makes me want to EXPLODE.

Turning it inwards

Instead of expressing my anger and frustration in a healthy way, I turn it inwards and attack myself. At first it starts off as a mental attack. INSULTS, ABUSE, SELF-HATRED. The things my parents and the bullies at school used to say to me, I say to myself: Ugly, fat, useless, pathetic, unwanted, better off dead.

The negative self-talk can only go on for so long before the anger bubbles over, like I’m in some kind of pressure valve, and I end up wanting to act on the negative feelings I hold towards myself, by physically causing myself pain, also known as SELF-HARMING.

Searching for a new anger-management strategy

At the moment though, I’m desperate not to follow the old negative patterns. I feel STUCK, TRAPPED. I know that I will lose my partner if I end up self-harming or attempting suicide again, and, if I do, I am also likely to end up back on the PSYCH WARD.

Alternatives

I’m trying so hard to change things. Firstly, I try to FILL MY DAY so I don’t have too much time to dwell on things. I try to do things that I know will RELIEVE MY TENSION, from watching a favourite TV show, to colouring in or other creative-type stuff. Blogging also really helps. It helps me to EXPRESS MYSELF in a CONSTRUCTIVE way and to feel LESS ALONE, when I realise that others are struggling with similar issues.

Hopes for the future

My hopes for the future are that my feelings of anger will lessen and I will FEEL MORE IN CONTROL of my anger,that I will learn to express it in a healthy way, that doesn’t leave me with feelings of REGRET after yet another explosion.

Do you struggle with anger? What ways have you found to manage it? What helps you to cope better with it? Either comment below or Tweet me @spursbythebeach.

Ready for a fight

You may or may not have noticed, that I have been absent, and almost absent, from the blogging community and social media. Hardly a word has been typed during this past month.

As a result I have felt isolated and lost. I was just starting to really think of myself as a blogger, when it all seemed to crash and burn, and I wondered if I would ever get it back.

The thought of a life without this blog and social media, depressed me and made me feel more alone than I’d felt in a long time. I missed the community that I’ve had on this blog and Twitter etc.

What happened?

This time has been less obvious as I wasn’t constantly feeling suicidal (although I still have my moments), I wasn’t on a psychiatric ward. Instead it has been a mixture of lethargy, distraction, personal problems, anxiety and depression, specifically negative thinking.

All I seem to do is sleep. I’ve tried reducing meds, but that made no difference, so I’m mostly back on them again. It’s so frustrating. I’m fighting back though. I’m determined to start posting again this week, and to finally return to the blogging and social media communities.

How do I plan to do this? Focus!

Frequently write something in draft form, coming back on a regular basis to add to, and edit, what I’ve written, so before I know it, I’ve produced another blog post.

Old posts could inspire follow-up or new posts, or give me ideas on ways that I can improve the blog. So I’m going to go through the blog with a fine-tooth-comb to decide where I go next with the it.

Confidence – believe in myself. Don’t let negative comments hold me back, instead, learn from them and move on.

Understand myself . Some days will be easier than others. There will be days full of inspiration, and days where I struggle to get a single word on the page, whether due to energy levels and concentration, or just plain and simple writers’ block.

Statistics – learn from them. What worked, what didn’t. Most importantly, write from the heart and don’t be ruled by them.

Anyway if you’re glad to see me back or have any useful tips to share, please feel free to comment below or tweet me @spursbythebeach.

When you feel like hiding from the world

Kitty feels like hiding from the world

Kitty feels like hiding from the world

For far too much of my life, I’ve felt like hiding from the world. It started when I was a child. I was ashamed of the way I looked, afraid of the bullies, worried my parents would embarrass me/kick off when they were drunk.

Now I’m almost 30 and not a lot has changed. This time it’s social anxiety, fear of being judged for my disabilities and severe depression, in which I feel like being around people just makes me, and them, worse.

There are things I’d like to do: Blogging meet-ups, physiotherapy groups, day centres, book clubs. Even when I was thinking about starting university the anxiety about being around hundreds of people during lectures, freaking out about fresher’s week and how I was going to go it alone as a disabled person and make friends, was tearing me apart.

I’d love to have another chance at education but at the moment my anxiety and depression are so bad that I’m constantly changing my mind about whether or not I should give it a try, because I don’t feel like I’m good enough. I’m not living, I’m existing.

I want to be a journalist and was given the opportunity to blog for my local newspaper but I’ve bottled out of doing it more than one time because I’m worried I’ll make a fool of myself. I know that sounds strange coming from a mental health blogger, but I’m ashamed to admit that negative feedback terrifies me. It causes me to beat myself up and is the reason I’ve spent too long hiding away or not doing the things that I love.

I want to change and I know that the only way that I can do that is with one small step at a time. I’ve started Slimming World and trying to wear make up more often so that I can be more physically confident. Mentally, is another matter entirely. I’m so scared of getting hurt or messing up. I’ve just started seeing a psychologist and I’m really hoping that it makes a difference as I’m so tired of being like this.

Being honest about how I feel, especially on here, helps a lot. The support I’ve received from Brokenglassshimmers’ followers, has meant so much.

I’m thinking about branching out with the blog too and doing an email newsletter for followers to chart my progress, what works/what doesn’t, perhaps even interview some of you too if you’re interested. If you would like to receive something like this then please let me know. I’m available on here as well as on Twitter @spursbythebeach .

52 weeks of gratitude – week 1 – Why start this challenge?

Thank you

Thank you

Recently, in fact for quite some time now, I’ve been feeling negative. I’ve been letting my health issues bring me down and leave me feeling negative and frustrated.

I spotted the 52 weeks of gratitude challenge on Pinterest (apologies I can’t remember who started it off), but I thought that this would be perfect for me.

Instead of focussing on the negatives all the time, the things I can’t do, I’m going to spend more time being thankful. I’m going to start this off with ‘Thankful Thursdays ‘. Every Thursday I am going to take part in this weekly gratitude challenge, helping me to look over the week with more positivity and start the weekend with some optimism.

The main reason that I am doing this challenge though, is because I know what happens when I get caught up in a negative thought cycle: I stop doing the things that I love, for example blogging, I isolate myself, I start thinking negatively towards myself and before I know it, I’m having thoughts about/actively trying to harm myself.

I want so badly, to break this negative thoughts cycle, and this seems like a great way to do that, by focussing on the positives in my life.

If you would like to join me with this challenge, please feel free to comment with your links/thoughts below, or Tweet @spursbythebeach . I hope that this can be useful for all of us.

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