Tag Archives: self-awareness

Ooomph

Resumption of play after lunch on the first day of the Boxing Day test, 2011

Resumption of play after lunch on the first day of the Boxing Day test, 2011

I do love my test cricket. It’s the only sport I really follow (apart from Aussie Rules, via osmosis from the dearly beloved). I felt I needed a soothing image this evening after a stressful day, so pulled up this picture of play resuming after lunch on Boxing Day, 2011.

Why was today stressful? Well, I called the insurance company at 9:04am, spoke to the woman handling my claim, and she said she’d call back at midday. I emailed at around 3:45pm and finally spoke to her about an hour later. There is still no definitive answer, but my claim has progressed to the next level. The process of completing a major insurance claim seems a bit like playing Candy Crush – these levels are endless!

I had high hopes of today, and I certainly did get a lot done, but it was all “busy work” – not the creative stuff I’d really been wanting to get my hands into. Well, apart from planting out some bulbs ūüôā That was possibly the highlight of the day. Most of my energy went into managing my anxiety, and that was a truly full-time job.

Did I have a successful day? Yes, I did. In terms of output, in terms of crossing items off my dream list, I fell short; but as my major challenge today was dealing with my anxiety and stress related to this insurance claim, I’d say I¬†aced it.

However, putting that much energy into managing anxiety takes its toll, and I am totally exhausted. I may not even make it through Masterchef tonight! I suspect it may be one of those nights where, despite medication, I can’t fall asleep.

This is where memories of test cricket at the MCG on Boxing Day can come in handy. Ball after ball bowled as the sun beats down, the rhythm of the overs, the excitement of a wicket falling; the hijinx of Bay 13 and the odd pitch invasion to incite mild outrage among the true believers. I can feel the heat seeping into my bones, hear the murmur of cricket on the radio …

Soothing.

 

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A Decluttering Success Story!

I have a wonderful friend, K, who has been encouraging me to declutter my life. She is very skilled in this area and everything she says makes perfect sense. But …

… my mind is fully occupied with other things, like surviving; it’s a BIG job; it’s changing long-held patterns; it’s – well, it’s a bunch of excuses is what it is.

Yesterday, though, I did successfully declutter something: my “Blogs I Follow” list! Now I have pared it down to the blogs I’ve discovered I really want to read. I can stop typing the names of my favourite ¬†blogs into the browser window from memory and use the WordPress reader as it should be used – to keep up with my desired reading, instead of it being jam-packed with other reading as well.

I made a quite severe cut – 90% of the blogs went – and was still concerned that I may need to prune harder, but I left the laptop off overnight and woke up to a very manageable reading list this morning.

How do I feel about this? Absolutely-bloody-fantastic. OK, it just took half an hour of hitting little “x”s, but it has made my life more streamlined, more efficient, and it’s a task I conceived of, carried out and completed, all in one session. That feels great, too!

I may not quite be up to clearing out the spare room (again) but when the time comes, I know I am capable of mustering the right mental mindset to get the job done.

Are you a natural declutterer, or like me, does stuff accumulate? If you’re like me, how do you cope with this in your daily life? I’d love to hear from you!

Jul to Dec 2010 002

This is how I feel: my Reader has been transformed from its wild, natural, organic self into a more useful form!

 

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Life is a salad bar, and you’ve got a lot of your plate, man

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By Helder Ribeiro from Campinas, Brazil (img_1386) [CC-BY-SA-2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)%5D, via Wikimedia Commons

Or so said the guitar-strumming therapist from “The Millers”.

This afternoon, it’s time to practise all those stress-release techniques I’ve been perfecting. Here’s to a few hours of:

  • Realizing these stressors will pass:¬†My therapist will come back from leave; the portentous¬†phone call will come; the tide will turn.¬†¬†
  • Directing my thoughts: There are things in life we can control, and things we can’t. There’s no point dwelling on those we can’t. (I need to check that I’m not avoiding difficult topics, but I’ve run the scan, and today’s stressors are most certainly un-dwellable.)
  • Ditching the diet: Yes, I am trying to lose weight, but weight loss is a marathon, not a sprint. Furthermore, studies have shown that willpower is a commodity which decreases as the day progresses. I’m going to put my efforts into controlling my thoughts, not controlling my calorie intake.
  • Relishing small pleasures: The feel of fur-lined slippers; the comfort of pappy TV comedy; the warmth of tea crossing my tongue.

How do you cope when there’s a lot on your plate?

 

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Stuff that’s true

Here’s a list of statements which are true, as I type this post:

  • I have a snotty nose and hope I’m not coming down with a cold
  • The central heating is working again – yay!
  • After a cluster of triggers and emotions yesterday afternoon, this morning I am firmly back in “dwell only upon that which you can control” territory; long may it last
  • I didn’t complete my exercise mini-challenge, but I’m cool with that – sometimes other things come up which take precedence
  • My therapist is away next week, so I’ll be left to the not-so-tender mercies of my psychologist, and I am expecting some major news which might be good or bad, so that will be interesting (anxiety plus!)
  • You know the difference between “want” and “need”? Well, the time when I “need” a new laptop¬†is rapidly approaching! This little darling has had so many parts replaced it’s more new than old, but it’s fading fast
  • When something’s true, it feels in my chest like a well-constructed bell ringing. Another aspect of my psychosomatic superpower, I guess!
  • Boring housework doesn’t get itself done
  • This morning would be an excellent time to finish editing an anthology of papers for my alter-ego, but I’m not sure the task will be completed before lunch … or anytime today, truth be told
  • I love my friends, and I am loved by my friends

What better note to finish on?

Church bell cutaway. Image found at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Church_bell.

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What is it about me and men?

I’ve got real issues with male authority figures. This time, it was my psychologist. I think he’s pretty good –¬†our first couple of months together have been quite constructive¬†– but today he reduced me to tears.

I was so excited explaining¬†the breakthrough I’d made with my therapist last week (complete with diagrams!) that he asked me to take a breath and slow down. I took the breath, but then felt tears pricking, welling, falling … The rational part of my mind knew he didn’t intend to rebuke me, but that’s how my inner child reacted. Thankfully, eventually, I could speak with him about this.

Perhaps today’s episode was a case¬†of (female) hormones clashing with (male) pragmatism; however, I have had a sad history with male authority figures in the past. Of course, I hope to transfer my psychologist from the “authority” category to the “work alongside” category, but he brings a bracing, energetic energy into the room, which I find unsettling – other men I’ve worked with in a therapeutic session have been gentler, less obtrusive.

The good thing about all this is that the issues have been brought into the therapeutic space and can be dealt with. The revelation is that certain types of men in certain types of situations still push my buttons.

Onward and upward!

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