Boyfriend/Anxiety/Vicious Cycles

I’ve been waiting on something extraordinary to happen, so I could fill the world in with what new “adult” like things I have learned. And not to say that I haven’t learned anything noteworthy, rather it’s just taken me an incredible amount of time to understand these lessons.

I searched a long time for inner peace. I worked really hard at being comfortable with where I was in my life despite some of the “uglier” things that I didn’t like. I was good, life made sense and I had my shit together.

And then all of a sudden life didn’t make sense. And I didn’t have my life together. I met a guy that totally flipped everything on it’s tail- and in no negative way at all. Suddenly I was in a place where I “missed” someone. I wanted to tell him things that were exciting or sad or happy or just tell him what I had for lunch. The little 24 year old divorced person became a 24 year old and “holy crap is this guy real” person. And that was a shock to my system.

My weekends were routine, and as were my work days. I knew the desires of my heart, and I knew what my soul needed at all times. And then it changed. My weekends became a delicious blur of two people playing in a kitchen and talking for hours. Work days became sprinkled with funny or sweet texts at the most opportune time and I was *living* for it.

Everything was perfect. So why didn’t I feel like it? I felt like I had met the most extraordinary man, someone who could be the literal definition of perfection, and yet I was struggling more than ever. And then it clicked- I wasn’t protected anymore. The little ice walls I built around myself after my divorce came down quite easily with this new guy. I let the walls come down without a second thought.

Once I realized I really liked this guy and that the feeling was mutual, everything became terrifying. Almost like a “this is too good to be true” type of feeling. For weeks I was overanalyzing things that people were saying to me, I could barely sleep, I was having a hard time being positive in my everyday life. It’s like subconsciously I decided that things were going amazingly and that now was as good a time as ever to self-sabotage.

This self-sabotage thing is so common for people to do. And we all do it, in one form or another, all in varying degrees. It basically stems from anxiety, fear and a belief that you are not good or important enough. For weeks my apartment was unbelievably messy. I was behind on laundry, behind with my blog, and just mentally not who I had been. *disclaimer, I was also quite sick for about two weeks during this time which didn’t exactly help the mental state* I was self-sabotaging my happiness, relationships, and even my laundry at that point.

And then, once I realized that self-sabotaging stems from anxiety and that annoying belief that you are not good enough I had an epiphany. Like anxiety and depression, this was a classic case of “vicious-miserable-cycle”. Example- you go home miserably sad and unmotivated and you lay in bed. You look at YouTube or go to sleep and neglect laundry or your responsibilities. This in turn only adds to the list of responsibilities you have and buries you even farther in your miserable state.

The only way I was able to break this cycle (with a lot of Tylenol and open conversations with my boyfriend) was to GET UP AND GO. I had to force myself to pick my room up, clear my email, deep condition my hair, and literally get my shit together. Sometimes we fall so far off of the path because we are sick, or going through a tough time. But it was comforting to know that I was not alone in this. Once I started in on the things I knew I needed to do it almost seemed like I was uncovering myself a little bit at a time. I didn’t let the stress or anxiety of what I was feeling control and dominate my life. Instead I pushed past that. I had to make a conscious decision to act against my anxiety and do the things I feared. Everybody has their ups and downs- but you have to appropriately deal with those low moments in order to truly get over them.

If you find you’re also in this slump, where you’re not depressed, but good lord you are just DONE for a bit, I recommend the following.

Do your most daunting task. And yes, it’s going to suck balls, but if you can get that one thing that’s keeping you awake out of the way, then you will be able to defeat ANYTHING.

Talk with a friend. Lay it all out on the line and just explode in your gross reality and listen to them when they say it will be okay.

Eat some good food and drink tons of water. You’re already dealing with stuff emotionally/physically so at least try to make sure you are trying your best to deal with your blood sugar and hunger pains.

Get out and go for a walk or a hike. Fresh air will do wonders.

And of course, always feel free to reach out and share how you have dealt with hard times too.

Exhausted Because I Am Growing A Hippocampus

No but really it’s true. In my psych class right now we are studying all sorts of strange things. One project is a case report on a 7 year old girl. Now I suppose I could pick issues out left and right with the textbook by my side and I could diagnose this child with a million things. But one, morally that feels quite strange, and two… she’s 7.

So in reading pages upon pages and doing so much research I found that we have a hippocampus (okay, I already knew this exhisted, but bear with me). The hippocampus is largely in charge of aggression, emotion and memory. The hippocamps regulates emotion. So it’s kind of an important thing, right?

Well turns out it develops with you until you are about 285 when it is fully developed. So *basically* we have been making decisions with only have a brain for the first 25 years of our life. I feel like this explains so much.

All jokes aside, it was a interesting moment when I realized that we are still physically and emotionally developing. Maybe this gives excuse to our crisis break downs at 20 and how we can’t logically think through some tough areas in our life.

The hippocampus, though located in the limbic system therefore associated with emotions, memory and motivation is most highly involved with our memories.

Let’s do math. Memories + Under Developed Emotional Capabilities + Stress= 20 year old life crisis. This explains so much.

This explains how it is possible to be so emotionally exhausted. We are searching for answers our brains don’t even have yet. Working with undeveloped organs.

Even though we are adulting and kicking asses and taking names- we are still tired. It takes a lot of work to grow a hippocampus (I mean, probably. Not a scientist or anything). Just think about these things the next time you’re pissed because you don’t know why you feel a certain way or why you can’t emotionally work through something. And then blame your under developed hippocampus.

How To Kick Anxieties Ass| Collab w/ Nicculent!

Hello lovelies, and welcome back to Adultish! Now as you know if you’ve been following my blog for any amount of time I am about as anxious as they come. I’m talking I can’t tie my shoes if I am hesitant about my breakfast choice kind of anxious. Anxiety is such a complex “thing” (let’s not call it a disorder just to be nice). Nicculent has done an amazing job at outlining what anxiety is, and how to tell if you have it. This is a collaboration we have worked hard on and to get the full effect make sure you check out her blog on this as well! In this blog we will talk about ways to manage your anxiety… and let me tell you, I have definitely found some tricks along the way!

Firstly, I think it’s really important to come to terms with the idea that you are anxious. I don’t believe in hiding your feelings and hoping they will go away. That’s the equivalent of putting a blanket over a pile of laundry and pretending it’s folded- while we have all been guilty, we are just lying to ourselves.

Now that you know you’re an anxious little bundle of emotions, try to rationally think about what it is that’s making you anxious. Take your anxiety as an opportunity to reevaluate your current situation and ask yourself what could be done to resolve the problem. This takes a tremendous effort to step outside of the “feelings” box you are in and enter a happier place.

This happy place can be whatever you want it to be. Think beach, forest, at home with your partner, with your parents, or alone in a bath tub with a bottle of wine (guilty). When you become anxious think about this happy place, it will lower your heart rate and allow your thoughts to swim a bit slower so you can actually *think* about what is going on.

While you are rationally thinking about your life and visualizing yourself in a tub as big as the Ganges river, your thoughts can either be happy or good. Usually when we are anxious we are also mean to ourselves. Thoughts like “why didn’t I do this, ugh so stupid!” swim around and that hammers us into an even more anxious little ball of emotion. Instead of letting your “mean voice” control the scene, allow the positive voice to come into play. Think “I know this didn’t go as planned, but what can I do now.”. When we think negatively we charge the vicious cycle of anxiety. When we think positively, we calm the cycle, we ground ourselves and become more realistic in our thinking.

Now of course not everything is that easy, and it takes a very strong mind and heart to implement these steps as they are mentally challenging. But what you already know about anxiety is that certain things will serve as triggers to your anxiety. For me, I am most anxious when my apartment isn’t clean, or when I don’t get enough sleep. Situations out of my control that make me anxious is when I think someone is mad at me. These things I might not have complete control over and to think my apartment can be immaculate at all times is just a psychotic thought I have given up on. So instead, I learned to change my approach. If I think someone is mad at me, I rationally think if I have upset them, and even if I have, I tell myself I can not allow it to steal my joy.

It’s not like everytime you are experiencing severe anxiety that you have to play along with these mind game mentioned above. Sometimes you need a quicker, more realistic “fix’. This is when I recommend the following:

  • Talk to a friend, let them in, and maybe cry a little. It’s good for your soul and you will feel lighter- I pinky promise.
  • Go for a walk outside. Sunshine helps with your mood so much, and getting your body moving will make your mind stop.
  • EAT. Make sure you eat something throughout the day. I have noticed if I accidentally skimp on meals that my anxiety is 10x worse. I think it is the sugar crash.
  • Write it out. Take all of your anxious little feelings and thoughts and give them another home other than your mind. As the words form on your paper let them stay there, and do not give them permission to come back into your thoughts.
  • Talk to a doctor. When my anxiety and depression was at its worse I went to the doctor and was prescribed medicine that helped me SO much. I was still able to function, and it gave me the ability to live my life. When I got off the medicine I was left with a better understanding of which situations should instill anxiety and which one’s my brain was taking too far.

I hope this blog was helpful to someone! These were my tricks along the way to becoming a less anxious person, and how I think I was able to really overcome being diagnosed with anxiety. I hope you check out Nicculents blog as well and show her some love!

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Give Me All The Coffee

Welcome back! Now, let’s get into the nitty gritty. I think I may be overdoing it this week, not going to lie. Here’s a break down of my week–

Monday- Work event- at work from 7am- 7:30pm.

Tuesday- At work at 6:30, proctor, 3 meetings and a crap ton of homework. Oh, and I need to make a diaper cake for Wednesday, work project #1 due.

Wednesday- Baby shower I planned for two people. Food, decorations, 4 hours of set up and countless email. Homework due. You need to grocery shop.

Thursday- proctor, work on collab blog, clean up Stan The Mans house for his pending arrival, big work project #2 due, set up for another work event.

Friday- Work event, homework due, collab blog due, work project #3 due, death.

I just want to know why I said “yes” to the diaper cake. I’ve gotta learn to say no! But let’s be real; the diaper cake isn’t stressing me out, it’s just the work load right now.

In other fascinating news, ToBeAdultish now has a Facebook page! And a Twitter! And needs a nap!!

All of the work stress and starting a new class on Monday has affected my sleep- I am dreaming I am at work and alligators are coming to class. What?!

I found gluten free donuts and they taste just like I would imagine fairy dust to taste like, only with the slightest hint of cardboard.

I have shaved my legs everyday this week, and yet missed a spot every single time. How does this happen?

It was 113 degrees the other day and I melted.

That’s your beautifully summarized coffee talk this week my lovely friends. Stay tuned for something super great to happen on Friday!!

When You Have A Bonus Kid

So this is a topic I never touch on because I feel like it is way too personal and incriminating to the aliases I have made on my blog. But I have written many blogs that explain what happens when you have a “Bonus Kid” and just never published them. Welp- that’s all changing now.

You see, when Vegas Friend and I started to become “closer friends” we kept Bonus Kid out of everything. BK didn’t know about me, we weren’t around with each other and it was a non issue. Now from my past blogs you will know that I had an interesting upbringing and that has made me a very “Child Sensitive Minded” person- if that’s a thing. I am always very receptive to kids feelings and very in-tuned with what they are trying to say. I am very empathetic by nature, and maybe more so with kids.

So here we are. Vegas Friend and Bonus Kid, my new “normal” that feels so weird. Weird because I am #not trying to be Bonus Kids mom, and they know that. Weird because I am zero percent qualified to even drive a kid around with me- yet I do. This is a whole new experience of “kid” that I have never known.

I didn’t know I could love a kid that wasn’t mine, or have the school calendar memorized of Bonus Kids days off. I didn’t know there would ever be a time of me looking at a report card and being super proud- Bonus Kid isn’t just a silly goober, but a SMART silly goober.

That’s kind of the thing about “Bonus Kids”. They are the bonus to your relationship. The provide humor, random outbursts about how much they have to pee, ladle in twenty pound of garlic “accidentally” and leave crumbs all over the place. And then they leave and you miss them. Bonus in the sense that I can hardly stand most other peoples kids, minus good friends, and I actually like this one!

Bonus because I have learned SO MUCH through Bonus Kid, and I get to show BK new things, like art, or planting, or playing scrabble (although, have you ever played scrabble with a kid?! I am not sure I advise. Lol).

One huge lesson is that I usually have the patience of a saint with BK. I am never upset, never annoyed or frustrated. BK is a kid, and I am pretty good at remembering that. EXCEPT, for when I am not good at it. We had a “long” day of a lot of highs and lows. The day started off GREAT, and then I started not to feel 100%. I was really irritable and grouchy. Well, turns out Kids sense EVERYTHING. And by 7 or so at night and the longest day of life, BK inadvertently throwing plants towards my eyeballs and then just being hangry- something happened. I was so agitated and uncomfortable I just got up and went inside.

I just wanted to shower the plants and day off of me and get ready to go out to dinner. Vegas Friend and BK were a little surprised because I have never just gotten up and walked away before. I went in to shower and Vegas Friend came in. I was sitting on the shower floor, Uber upset because I just let BK know I was frustrated. Well, turns out BK started crying because she thought I was mad at her, and then I felt like total garbage. So I went in to talk to her. It took me back to being a kid and when my grandma would be upset with me. I would get so wrapped up in my feelings I would just start to cry. BK said, you’re always so calm and you always take my side and make me laugh, and tonight you just walked away. So pause here, and just hear my heart shatter in a million pieces. Yep. I felt like a TOTAL ASS. I just explained we all have good days and bad days, and as an adult I should be able to handle my emotions better, and that I was sorry. We talked for an hour on her bed while Vegas Friend was dying of starvation on the couch- then went to have steak. And steak fixes everything.

I don’t totally know if there’s a point to this blog, or a lesson to take away. But props to the actual moms with the actual kids who do this on the daily. A Bonus Kid is hard enough.