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Everything posted by Sophy

  1. How about this re guilt: By freeing yourself, you will be an example and an inspiration for everyone else to do the same. By staying trapped you will be an example for those around you to do the same. Really, in the long term, freeing yourself is the greatest gift you can give yourself and others, because by doing it, you give others permission to do it too.
  2. This is a beautiful idea!! Thank you! Actually, I will write this across the top in big letters. My to-do list is basically "everything" that needs to be done, that I can think of. There is no-realistically-possible-way that I will achieve anywhere near all of it during the next 6 weeks (it is wayyy too long). But that is okay, because it doesn't *all* NEED to be done within 6 weeks. Reminding myself of that by writing it across the top of the to-do list is excellent! : )
  3. I agree that "sharing" a forum at the same time could be tricky. Maybe you can just encourage her generally for now, to get some therapy and to join a (non-online) support/ self-help group? You could also post here in the "family and relationships" section to get advice/ feedback on how best to support her. This way you'd be providing a lot of support for her and not need to feel "conflicted" about not recommending "your" forum to her at the moment.
  4. Yes, it's all a very delicate and quite difficult balance, huh? Thanks for reminding me about truly challenging things, like what the people you work with are going through. I truly feel a bit silly for buying into the drama of battling my own demons as all I am struggling with is a long holiday with a crappy to-do list. It is soooooo easy to get caught up in our own heads and to get caught up in the drama of our own anxieties. This has been a healthy reminder that my anxiety is pretty small *in the large scale of things* and that not taking it too seriously is a good part of coping with it : )
  5. So, this "to do list" stuff has so many layers... I was talking to a work colleague before my break that we both set ourselves way too long/ way too demanding "to do" lists... And that inevitably, we only finish half of the list at most, because the list was so unrealistically long to start with. I know I'm going to struggle with that one on this break too. Also, my brain gets weirdly OCD-ish about work tasks. Sometimes this is great! I can get involved in nerdy projects and tasks for work for hours on end, producing really excellent results. Sometimes, it's not so great. My brain can start latching onto stupid tasks like paperwork and "overdo" it, losing a sense of perspective, getting caught up in weird anxiety-perfectionism loops, even tho I "know" perfectionism is detrimental and pointless and self-defeating. My mind just runs away with that stuff automatically sometimes. Gah. Being "stuck" with nothing to do except a big, triggering to-do list is bringing out the worst in me, haha : D All the negative habits, poor coping skills and other bad traits I have are really being brought to the forefront with this situation.... : P
  6. : ) Pretending only gets you so far... All the really valuable stuff you can only reach when you stop pretending, though Scary but worth it! : )
  7. Well, that's why I suggested an exercise bike... You could type here on your laptop as you are using it. We'd encourage you!! : )
  8. Have you considered getting one of those walking/ running treadmills? A decent one is pricey, but a 2nd hand one should be managable given your rent is cheap ; ) Or an exercise bike? I bought an exercise bike and built a desk-thingee for it, so I could use my laptop while using the exercise bike. Exercise bike and TV can be a good combination too. I think that's a pretty good option for anyone who's got depression/ doesn't like leaving the apartment. Getting a good quality exercise bike cheap 2nd hand is easy. So many ppl get told by their Dr to get one and then never use it and sell it : D
  9. If you can't find a quiet space, try the bathroom. People will allow you to lock yourself up in the bathroom for half an hour or an hour, even if they won't give you privacy and time out anywhere else. If you have a bathtub, curl up in the empty bathtub with some comfy towels and cry your eyes out. Or, if you have time/ inclination, actually have a soothing bath and cry. Benefit of being in the bathroom: you can wash your face, when you are done crying.
  10. Course it's allowed. Find yourself a quiet corner and tell everyone to go away until you've had your cry. I struggle to give myself permission to cry - I was taught for so many years it was "useless" and "being weak" by people who were a) abusive and b) didn't have a clue about anything that matters in life. You have everyone at DF's permission and support to cry as much and as often as you want and need to.
  11. Nope. Don't have an iPhone. I refuse to spend lots of $ on devices and gadgets and technology, so keep that stuff to a minimum. Do you use it? Want to share your daily stats with us as a potential source of motivation? : )
  12. Nope. Don't have an iPhone. I refuse to spend lots of $ on devices and gadgets and technology, so keep that stuff to a minimum. Do you use it? Want to share your daily stats with us as a potential source of motivation? : )
  13. You live in an interesting part of town : D Are you trying to recreate some kind of downtown New York flair?? : ) How many steps so far today? Unbelievably, I got up to 12,000 yesterday. Dunno how that happened (long dog walk) given I felt quite down yesterday evening and nearly stayed home. Only at 795 so far today tho I forgot to put my device on this morning, so I think I'm at about 1200 at the moment.
  14. This is true, tho I have struggled with it over the years. Coming from a traumatic childhood and starting into adulthood with PTSD, depression, anxiety and panic disorder at 18 has been rough. I felt 100% exhausted, drained, overwhelmed, depressed all of the time. If I'd just "given in" to that, I think I'd have slept for a decade. So it's always been a weird (probably not always healthy) mix of pushing myself to achieve the unachievable, because I knew I wanted to do therapy to recover and heal from this stuff, as I refused to allow trauma, depression and anxiety to rule my entire life - mixed with trying to get enough rest and recovery to actually keep going. I'm not sure that I *can* trust my body's or mind's signals about when I need a rest. I try to make the best guess I can, but I regularly get it wrong. It's all a bit hit and miss. I'm doing my best to eventually develop a sense of normalcy with this. I do wonder whether I will EVER sleep normally, feel rested, not feel perpetual-exhaustion, not have anxiety be the driving/ motivating force in my life. Life has certainly gotten better as I've done therapy and grown and healed. But I have spent 4 decades with PTSD, depression and anxiety and have a long way to go yet to living a life which is truly "free" of those things. I've not had a normal night's sleep in 35 years, for example. So normal/ healthy is still a goal off on the horizon. Not as distant as it used to be, but still a long way to go. For now, I've learned to live WITH my health issues and disabilities. Like someone who has got their diabetes in control, or someone who's come to terms and accepted their wheelchair, I've learned to live WITH an "acceptable" level of PTSD, depression an anxiety. I've sought treatment for the worst of it and have now structured my life, my job, my finances, my day around LIVING with the remainder. It's been difficult accepting it as a disability that won't "magically go away" any time soon and to make peace with it and to incorporate it into my life so fully that my life is now a life-with-depression and life-with-PTSD, but it's been a worthwhile journey. When I was trying to "just make it go away" it was utterly unworkable and miserable.
  15. Also, for anyone else struggling with a big pile of work and daunted by finding the motivation like @MarkintheDark ; ) An ex of mine used to say: If you need to eat an elephant, you can only do it one slice at a time. Basically, if you are confronted with an enormous task, then no superhuman effort you make, will ever get it "done and out of the way" within a day or two. Settling into the acceptance of "one slice at a time" and deeply knowing and trusting that this is how you *will* reach your goal is an important part of that journey. It's a marathon, not a sprint.
  16. @Floor2017 you also raise a very good point about enjoying my time off. I "know" I need to use this 6 week break as follows: 50% doing the big pile of difficult and overdue tasks 50% of getting true rest, relaxation, me-time, fun, inspiration etc If I don't do the latter, to basically re-charge my inner (emotional) batteries, I'll be an exhausted, frazzled mess when I return to work. Thank you for reminding me to get this balance right! I'd forgotten to focus on this for the last couple of days, because I was just trying to focus on how to start doing this biiiiiig pile of work.
  17. Hi Floor : ) No I did not, but I grew up in a very, very dysfunctional family as a child, which unfortunately was the equivalent of serving in the military... : P Yes, I am an evening person. Sometimes it's challenging to just say "no" to early-morning stuff, because society values morning-people so much more highly than evening-people. At 40, I figure screw that tho : D I'm happy to get anything done, at any time of day or night : D Anyone who doesn't like it can go and take a very long hike, right? : ) But it's a hard pattern to break out of.
  18. Also, when I get depressed/ anxious, mornings are my absolute worst time of day. For some reasons, that's when my serotonin/ dopamine/ whatever levels will hit rock-bottom. At that time of day, when I am feeling depressed/ anxious, I could basically burst into tears just from trying to tie my shoelaces/ making a cup of coffee. It's a horrendous start to the day, when it happens. I actually have a note to myself taped to my wardrobe that this happens and a reminder not to freak out about it. Often, I will forget that this is my "normal" depression/ anxiety pattern. If by noon I have achieved "nothing" I'll often get a panic attack because I feel like I will "never" achieve anything. But that is not true. In times of depression and anxiety, I achieve all my work in afternoons and evenings and can be quite highly functional then and achieve a LOT. So by putting pressure on myself in the mornings, when I am at my LEAST functional during times of stress/ depression, I set myself up to fail in the worst possible way, and will be so exhausted and miserable that I can hardly make any use of my productive afternoon and evening hours. It can be SUPER challenging to truly give myself "time off" compassionately in the mornings, but it's what works. At the moment, I'm NOT in a depression and anxiety phase (knock on wood) so my mornings have been reasonably productive, but they are still my least-productive time of day. For some reason (which I think is PTSD related) sleep is a source of recovery for my brain, but also totally unravels my brain. I feel like everytime I wake up, I have to "rebuild" my brain to cope with the day. I truly feel "blank" when I wake up and totally need to readjust to being awake and being alive and working out what I need to do and how to cope. It's weird, but it's been like that for the last 3 decades, so I guess I need to just deal with it and hope that it will slowly get less bad, as I continue to do long-term healing from PTSD, depression, anxiety.
  19. My tasks for today are: 1. Dismantle bed and furniture in the spare/ guest room so I can build a desk and book shelves there on Monday and Tuesday. I need to set up an office now. I moved to a farm 2 years ago and it's all been renovating since then and living on a building site. My "office" so far has been a big cardboard box of paperwork, a laptop and a printer. Not very managable!! : P 2. Make a BIG pile of the mail/ paperwork/ bills I need to deal with over the next few weeks 3. Install online banking for the new bank account I have opened for my non-profit project 4. Keep working on my to-do list for the next 6 weeks, so I have a good overview of what needs to be done and can start planning a sensible/ managable approach.
  20. No, I'm not, to be honest. I used to try and do this when I was younger (20s) but it's never worked for me. I will get so intensely triggered by stuff that it just turns into do-whatever-to-survive-emotionally. If I have to try and stick to an arbitrary "timetable" too, it drives me completely bonkers. I have a high level of intrinsic motivation (i.e. I *WANT* to get things done) and only avoid tasks out of fear/ anxiety, so I find I don't actually need to create additional "pressure" on myself to do them. Rather, I need to get anxiety/ fear/ triggering down to a level where I can actively DO the tasks I want to do. I have found that this technique helps me the most: Plus, I also do a thing of working for 10 mins, having a break for 10 mins, working for 10 mins etc when I get very triggered/ overwhelmed. (And I will adjust it to 5 mins of work, 10 mins of break, or 3 mins of work, 20 mins of break, if things get really, really bad - just so that I don't STOP doing stuff and keep accomplishing a BIT and making progress.)
  21. I have six weeks off from work, which as everyone here knows is a blessing and a curse, mixed into one. Yes, it's wonderful to be able to sleep in and to free float, but the unstructured time is also a huge burden in terms of motivation and staying balanced and not getting into weird, unhelpful emotional states. I have also got a really scary to-do list to deal with. I've piled tasks into the "too hard basket" for the last 12 - 18 months and now I have to face them during my time off. They are basically all overdue or very-overdue and are daunting tasks that I find triggering. I feel like these 6 weeks will be a constant pattern of me dealing with triggering tasks, recovering from the triggering, dealing with the next triggering tasks, recovering, moving on to the 3rd triggering task and so on. I'm going to be in my own personal maze of triggering crap with few positive tasks to give me a sense of achievement and with zero structure. I'm going to have to dredge up some superhuman strength to deal with some of this stuff. And I'm going to have to somehow/ magically/ over-night learn some better coping skills and self-management skills and time-managements skills and dealing-with-triggers skills. Blurgh : P I just want to run away and hide.
  22. Find a local dog to borrow for walks. Most dogs and their owners will be super grateful! And for everyone struggling with depression, it can be good not to have the added responsibility of looking after a living being 24/7. Don't just car-share, dog-share too! : D
  23. Totally agree with this. If someone has a major illness like depression then not seeking treatment is irresponsible and will destroy any relationship. Think of it like any other illness. If you had a partner with diabetes who was not seeking treatment, or a partner who was an alcoholic and not seeking treatment, or a partner with any other debilitating illness not being managed or treated, that would be unworkable and a huge burden. Life with someone who has major depression and is GETTING treatment is challenging enough! Living with someone who has major depression and is not making an active effort to get treatment and get better is a nightmare.
  24. Have you tried electrolytes, including salt? Electrolyte imbalance can cause some pretty full-on symptoms. Do you want to share what tic-borne illness you had and what meds were used to treat it? Maybe that'll ring a bell with someone...
  25. Hi I guess anything is possible, but it sounds pretty physical to me. Apart from the stress of having these symptoms, have you been subjected to lots of psychological stress in recent months? Is there any trauma in your past? As I said, it doesn't sound very psychological to me, with all of those symptoms and the onset so sudden, but I guess right now, every avenue is worth exploring.
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