Friday, June 7, 2013

Taking Down the Wall

The first Atlantic tropical storm of the season (Andrea) is here and I am feeling as soggy and grey as it is outside. I often wonder if barometric pressure has any effect on mood? Now that would make an interesting research paper!

As I look around the room right now, I am surrounded by clutter and mess.
It has built up like a wall around my psyche. Inability to take care of one's basic needs (e.g. housekeeping) is a hallmark symptom of depression. Taking down the wall is one of the necessary steps to take toward wellness; and this is my goal of the day.

But it feels overwhelming. How am I going to tackle all the mess!?

First of all, I'm not going to tackle all the mess. I am going to set a realistic goal for myself: the kitchen.

Second, this realistic goal is going to be achieved in micro-steps. Years ago, to get my kids involved in clean-up, I came up with the "clean-up game". I listed tiny, little mini-tasks (e.g., pick up books on floor, bring laundry downstairs) on pieces of paper, folded them up, and put them in a bowl. Like a raffle, each child  drew a piece of paper from the bowl and did that task. At the end of the designated time, or when all the papers were gone, the child with the most pieces of paper got to select desert for the evening. I am going to put my own micro-steps on paper and play the clean-up game.

Finally, I am going to savor the feeling of a clean, functional kitchen. Oh yeah, and instead of desert, I am going to reward myself with Starbucks! 

Thursday, June 6, 2013

The Daily Struggle

I am telling you right now, I do not want to go to class today! I don't even want to take a shower right now. It has nothing to do with the class itself - in fact I love the topic. Rather, it has everything to do with feeling exhausted and the gravity of my bed tugging at me.

But I must go to school. It is not that missing a day would set me back academically, so much as it is about what the late Stephen Covey called "exercising integrity in the moment of choice". As I struggle against the weight of the Vortex, I must keep the commitment I made to myself in order to keep moving in the direction of wellness. 

But why does everything have to feel so heavy?!


Well, I did it! I kept my commitment and it feels good! After signing off, I brushed my teeth and took a shower...

           got dressed...

Serenity Prayer Necklace

{everyone needs a super-hero outfit!}

          and headed to school. 

No really, that was the topic du jour!

And at the end of the day, lesson learned:

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Changing Momentum

I am feeling better today than I did yesterday, and I realize that the one thing that changed was setting small goals for myself and achieving them. When I say small, I mean small - things like: make bed, buy book online, send email - nothing monumental just momentum-changing. Just enough to get the ship moving a degree or two in a better direction.

What small goals can you set for yourself today - that will move you in a better direction? Write it down, commit to yourself, and do it! I'm gonna do it to!

Monday, June 3, 2013

Some Days

Some days are better than others, and today is not one of those days. I could not get out of bed for the longest time this morning. Time and space were sticky; it was like moving through molasses. In order to finally do it, I had to partially sit up, wait a while, then fully sit up. Eventually, I was able to sit at the edge of the bed, and finally stand up. A tree sloth would have gotten out of bed, made his way down the stairs, done the dishes, and made a batch of pancakes in the same amount of time it took me just to get out of bed. {Bet you didn't know they were so talented!}

Seriously, that is what it is like to get out of bed some days; and I hate myself for it. I know the average person struggles sometimes, but it seems depression adds another layer of heaviness to the whole process.