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Currently Browsing: Daily Shalagh

100 Day Project : First Two Weeks

It would seem I’m two weeks into my 100 Day Project. And it’s been a real joy to be participating. I have no regrets for joining other than that I wish I knew my medium better. But I think this project will be the teacher of that lesson undoubtedly. 100 Day Project : First Two Weeks on Shalavee.com

I began only with the idea of quick sketches in mind. But I quickly realized that the items available for quick sketches were also everyday objects. Mundanity is laying about the house all the time. And such a realization elevates the everyday object to something bigger. Our everyday existence is just as glamorous and glorious as any other day, it’s just how we see it.100 Day Project : First Two Weeks on Shalavee.com

Somehow I doubt that I will run out of everyday objects.

100 Day Project : First Two Weeks on Shalavee.com

Follow along with my progress on Instagram and then Facebook as my Instagram account dumps out into Facebook. Any requests for objects? Let me know. Also I’ve asked if there is any subjects that you know I/we should be talking about but aren’t in my last post.

If you enjoyed what you read, please subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your email box. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter or Pinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional In-touchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

Habit and Anxiety Makes Us Feel The Fear is Real

Our societal addiction to anxiety is epic at this point. Number one mental disorder of the world is anxiety and it’s companion, depression. Depression is the leading cause of disability in the U.S. for people ages 15 to 45. Undiagnosed and untreated, people are on autopilot in their everyday lives perpetually bridging the gaps between their fears and the dopamine, the hormone that the brain releases that would quell it. Our “chosen” method to deal with our anxious selves is to emotionally regulate with our personal chosen “binkys” of food or phones, alcohol or dope.

But what struck me recently was the realization that what we’re afraid of may not be there anymore. Let’s be compassionate and know that we adopt our coping mechanisms honestly. Each of us anxiety prone people initially used food or alcohol or whatever chosen pacifier because there was something not good happening that we needed to self-soothe ourselves for. A fear of abandonment is a fear of death. My personal coping choice has been to over-drink wine. As a child of an alcoholic, I’ve always been concerned for myself although I never became an alcoholic.Habit and Anxiety Makes Us Feel The Fear is Real on Shalavee.com

When I began to truly want to shed my extra weight, I knew that those empty calories of wine were my “one thing”. That one thing that I’d lose the weight if I gave up. I began to look at why it was that I thought I needed to overindulge and what I saw was a habit of treating myself for the anticipated worry and stress of my life. Except, I couldn’t see how my life was truly that horrible any more. Yes maybe back in my first marriage but this life I have now ain’t too bad.

What I realized was that the assumption that I had something to be worried about was also an addiction. I was addicted to anxiety. By reverse substantiation, I was assuming something was still wrong because I kept treating myself as if there was. And then I realized that the only way to truly prove that my life now isn’t all that horrible, was to take away that very element (wine) which by its use seemed to keep proving I had something to worry about.Habit and Anxiety Makes Us Feel The Fear is Real on Shalavee.com

Addictions are two-fold. They are adopted to regulate our emotions but the unseen element is our bodies production of the hormone dopamine when it anticipates the reward is coming. People who “cut” themselves or play with their phones have the same addiction in common. They are hooked on the happy hormonal release of dopamine they get just before engaging in these acts. The same for overeating or smoking. Read this brief post on our hormones.

 

 

brain produces dopamine when you accomplish stuff on Shalavee.com

My friend and fellow blogger Heather Serody, author and creator of the blog Thrive in Midlife, wrote a very interesting series on how she overcame her over-drinking. Find the worksheets and links to her three pieces on How to Overcome Over-drinking Here. She discovered that the first part of breaking the cycle was abstinence. Allowing ourselves to cope without the crutch can be just the thing to prove to ourselves that the need for the addiction isn’t really there as much. Mind you that before or simultaneously, you may also want to have a talk with yourself about which fears are your go-to Cognitive Distortions; lies you tell yourself about how disastrous it all is and how it will always be (my preferred cognitive distortions are  catastrophic ones). There are more than a few that we offer ourselves to perpetuate our anxieties.Habit and Anxiety Makes Us Feel The Fear is Real on Shalavee.com

I also feel like our addictions become our pink elephants which also run the circus. I wrote a piece called Our addictions take on a life of their own in which I discuss how our fears have us so convinced that we will die without our addictions, we have no other options in light of this absolute but to continue feeding the fear beast and it’s dopamine addicted keeper.

A shortcut and circle has been made.

Anxiety equals feed or die and repeat.

We are intelligent beings whose quest for knowledge has placed cell phones in our hands and a couple of guys on the moon. Yet, when it comes to our own inner workings, we are not encouraged to understand ourselves. We are in fact encouraged to continue to watch Television news in horror so that we can become anxious and then go buy whatever we deem necessary to regulate our emotions. There is no profitability in self-discovery unless you’re in the self-help industry I suppose.

I abhor the concept that I’m a lemming destined to do the same exact thing everyday for the rest of my life as everyone else is doing. Call me a punk but if I really do have a choice everyday on what I do and who I am, let me be fully aware of how far that freedom extends. I don’t intend to continue to let fear control me if I can outsmart it and graduate to a better way of living.

“Fear, anxiety, and the addictions they create keep you from living, from hoping, and from moving. You are standing on the shoulder of the road of life while people are passing you who owned their choices and chose life over death or misery. You wouldn’t wish that fate on anyone so why are we living this fear loop for years? Because we don’t recognize our choice to choose hope.” From a blog post Addiction Pimps Out Your anxieties to Feed it’s Need

If any of this brings you relief to read it, you are not alone and I urge you to follow your inquisitions down whatever rabbit hole you need that you may truly understand that you are in control of your life. That the behaviours that we exhibit do not define us and we have all the power we give ourselves permission to have to fight back for the control. We can choose to return ourselves to ourselves.

If you enjoyed what you read, please subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your email box. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter or Pinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional In-touchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

 

What Are We Not Talking About ? Let’s Talk

(A little late coming to you today as I was sick this weekend and still am)

If you read me regularly, you’ll know there’s not much I’m not talking about. Not necessarily current events but I will discuss what they really mean to each of us. I will always tell my truth, I will offer perspective, and I will look for hope. So what am I not talking about that we should be talking about?

How about Women’s issues? It really wasn’t until recently that I realized that women were oppressing themselves.  That was a new topic for me. And perhaps I need to delve more into this subject? I love to talk about creativity and how it helps to diminish anxiety however all the articles I can find are about how anxious people are creative. What Are We Not Talking About ? Let's Talk on Shalavee.com

And my recent discovery of the Impostor Syndrome has my me recognizing that the reasons I can’t ask for money, or maybe you can’t seek better employment, is because of our fears of being singled out and shamed,… our fear that we won’t do it right. Every day that I own my part in my repression, I am freer. And it takes understanding and knowledge to gain the power to walk away.

So what is it that we aren’t talking about? Leave me a comment if you think there’s a particular subject that needs our attention. And let’s think about these ideas together.

If you enjoyed what you read, please subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your email box. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter or Pinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional In-touchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

Being OK With a One Pain Level

I went for two more appointments to follow up on my SI joint pain. That even though I am at a one mostly with the pain level, I had committed to seeing myself through to be pain free. And this is what happened. I found out I was not a candidate for the traditional radio frequency ablation (intentional nerve damage to cease the ongoing pain) because the usual nerve branches were not the ones causing the pain. But the procedure I researched that would help? That’s being done at Hopkins. And by the way, my SI joint is malformed. That I already knew.

I had a doctor ask me what my pain level was several months ago and I said a one maybe a two. He asked, “Well that’s pretty good. Can you not live with that?” I told him that if it meant I felt I had to take Ibuprofen on a regular basis than no. But his question kept buzzing in my head. He’s an Eastern medicine practitioner. And my friend recently pointed out that our Western notion of having to be completely pain-free may be unrealistic.

I am aware and wary, nay paranoid, that this pain will increase again. And this means that I will be getting shots to quell the pain several times a year until I do something else. But I agree that I have thought of this journey in medical treatment as an attempt to erase the pain, not make it livable. And this may also be the way I’ve thought about mental health as well.Being OK With a One Pain Level

None of us are without our quirks. But I think I have always thought of “normal” as a state of being without emotional pain and drama. And although occurrences of pain and drama vary, life is an unpredictable ride we very human humans have to go along with.

“We think that the point is to pass the test or to overcome the problem, but the truth is that things don’t really get solved. They come together and they fall apart.” -– Pema Chödrön –

Seems to me that the number one thing that we can always use to overhaul and edit is our expectations. And so, until my SI joint pain surpasses what it is now, I’ve decided to take the Summer off from worrying about it. The End. And The Beginning.

If you enjoyed what you read, please subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your email box. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter or Pinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional In-touchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

Body Buddy

When my son was little, if I saw he was doing something that would hurt himself intentionally, I’d say, “Don’t hurt my friend”. I say this to my daughter as well.The idea being that I care about them as much as I would a friend seems to be not as obligatory but a choice to care about them. I love each as a buddy and friend and as children.

The more I learn about self-care and self-trust, the more I know I need to teach my daughter how to self-soothe and be there for herself instead of looking for the comfort and acceptance outside herself through drugs, food, or sex perhaps. Seems such a simple concept yet no one ever pointed out my duty to take care of myself in this way.

And then the other day, I was explaining the bracelet on m wrist was my friendship bracelet to myself. That before I could be a good friend to anyone else, I needed to be my own friend first. And Fiona thought about this and agreed and side, “We can have our own Body Buddy.” I gasped at the simple brilliance of this concept and asked if I could use the phrase. She agreed to let me.Body Buddy on Shalavee.com

Imagine if we were all allowed and encouraged to be our own friends from when we were small. That this friendship would allow more self-compassion and thus less self-hatred. What if we didn’t hate our bodies and accepted our differences as beautiful? That we could then have more love and compassion for our fellow humans and less judgement because we knew ourselves well enough. Imagine the rooting of self-trust that would allow us to take bigger and better better risks because we knew we always had our own backs in the end even if we failed. 

The opposites of anxiety and depression is love and trust and connection. It makes complete sense that in giving our next generation solid selse of self and tolerance for our humanity, we are raising people who can make better decisions on behalf of humanity. If this is my only contribution, let it be the best I can give. Let my children know themselves and have faith in their own body buddy. Let my daughter be visible to herself and need no one to give her what she can give herself.

If you enjoyed what you read, please subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your email box. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter or Pinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional In-touchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

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