Yesterday’s blogging was really helpful for me. Seeing things as they really are sometimes can be a helpful starting point for change.
If depression is an illness, then illnesses are treatable. There is medicine for illness and I know what that medicine is. So in the same way if I had a sore arm, I would know what will help and what would make it worse… I can do that with this period of low mood.
And that in and of itself makes things better. So here is my prescription thus far:
- accept the things I cannot currently change
- change the things I cannot currently accept
- go to bed at regular times
- eat food… and not just rubbish
- go out for a walk every day
- get sun on my face
- make the bed each day
- be kind to myself- don’t berate myself- it doesn’t help
- self-soothe using the different senses
- focus on breathing
- ask for help
and even though all of that feels too much, don’t give in to the temptation to do nothing and isolate.
I need to avoid:
- situations I find depressing (e.g. visiting my neighbour in the care home)
- only eating rubbish
- in fact, doing all the opposite of the above list!
THIS TOO SHALL PASS… it won’t last for ever.
I am restless. I am over tired. I can’t focus and all this leads to frustration.
So many things to do. Nice things. Necessary things. Creative things. Important things. And I can’t seem to do any of them.
I have school work to do. Sewing projects to start. Knitting projects to complete. De-cluttering. Tidying up. Marmalade to make before the oranges go off. Christmas presents from last year that need finishing and giving. Putting away the washing (still hanging up from 2 weeks ago). Posts to write. Books to read. Bills to pay. And I can’t seem to do any of them.
The restless-ness is one of my ‘worse’ feelings. I can’t bear being unproductive. If I don’t achieve something- I’ve failed. I am happy for that achievement to be small e.g. putting away the washing… but it has to be there. And it isn’t there.
It’s Saturday morning in the UK. I’ve been awake since early. I’ve talked to myself and told myself to chill. Take a day out. Rest. Penelope wants me to just do things for pleasure- try and raise my mood. But achieving/producing is my pleasure. I love turning old curtains in to new aprons. I love forming a cake from egg and flour. I love seeing a black and white page transform in to a blaze of colour. So what do I do about that… when my pleasure is derived from the very thing I can’t seem to do at the moment?
I suppose I have some options.
- explore finding another source of pleasure. (definitely worth doing any way)
- Get a grip and get off my arse and do something or
- Follow the DBT way. The DBT way says ‘radical acceptance’. I stop fighting the restless feeling, and accept it. I accept the mess. The unfinished. The plans that aren’t happening. I accept things as they are today. In this moment. I may not like being like this. But today, I am like this. Accepting it, disempowers it. Accepting it, causes rest.
So today, instead of looking at all the things to do and getting frustrated that they aren’t getting done. I will accept, I have unfinished things in my life. When I have more energy, they will get done. When I’m on form, I can achieve a lot. But at the moment, I can’t.
So today.I am restless. I am over tired. Can’t focus… and that is just the way it is.
Thanks for listening .