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Monday, 19 August 2013

Constant Quest for Positivity

Whew. It's been a crazy few months. Some of you may have noticed my radio silence. I imagine those who follow my blog or twitter feed are not surprised I needed a break from social media. The break has been necessary as I work hard to be the best me I can be. However I will continue to write. Here's a tidbit of my focus as of late.

Recovery, as I have mentioned before, is a process that is not always linear, often takes steps backwards, has an indeterminate length, and requires a tremendous amount of patience. Once I began to get stronger, it also required (requires) a tremendous of work from me. 

So that, in a nutshell, is where I'm at. Facing my emotions, looking into my heart.

Taking one day at a time (sometimes one moment at a time) but trying to remember to live it, not just survive it. I am getting better and have been equipped with the tools to make the final steps. As the depression wanes, it's up to me to discover happiness again.

This means not listening when the thoughts creep in that I don't know what I'm doing, wondering what the hell I was thinking to make such a major change, thinking that I am not cut out for this. It means taking each and every one of those thoughts and turning it around.

I do know what I'm doing.
This change is a step forward.
I am cut out for this.

Reframe it.
 Accentuate the positive.

Keep on the sunnyside.

There have been times when I think of it as "fake it till you make it" but it's not really faking it. It's just grabbing hold of that little thing and holding on to it with all I've got so I can get to the other side of the darkness. 

How can I make this feel okay?

What can I do to make myself smile?

To breathe?

My runs have become my meditation. I breathe in for three steps and out for two. Three strong words are picked each day and I think them as I breathe in, breathe out and start again. A mantra. 




The words change but it fuels my run and cleanses my soul.

Each and every night, I lie in bed and list the things I'm grateful for. Often they are not about at me, but the loving friends and family I have surrounding me, the amazing people I have come in contact with, the beautiful weather I've been living in. I drift off to sleep holding these thoughts in my head instead of turning over and over the things that went wrong.

Sounds cheesy. But it's working.

The last bump I had was a doozy. I was in town, on my own, and as I hung up from a difficult phone call, I could feel the anxiety closing in, my chest tightening, my eyes glistening. 

***annnnnd breeeeeathhhheeee*

in for three, out for four
in for five, out for six.

***annnnd wallllkk**

'positive positive positive'

It'll be fine. It'll work out. It is not in your control.

Focus on what is.

I ran errands. 

One. at. a. time.

Each check mark, I stopped, reminded myself that it was a step forward, and continued to the next one.

The anxiety didn't magically disappear, but I kept it at bay. Not in a masking, ignoring, I'll have a total break down way, either. (believe me, I've been there) I was aware of it constantly. I had to stop and breathe a lot that afternoon but focusing on what I could do, what I was doing, helped me get through. I made it.

The day was good.