|Our den has never looked so beautiful to me.|
For some reason this time around I didn't see it coming. The descent down wasn't as rapid and dramatic as it normally is. That's a good thing, I'm learning! Maybe it's because I'm handling stress better? Or maybe I'm better able to self regulate? I don't know, what I do know though is that I still don't know how to take care of myself well enough to prevent this from happening in the first place. The crash landing is getting less turbulent, but it's still a crash landing.
I guess I should back up and explain what hitting bottom means for me. It means that I've managed to get myself to the point where I have a hard time functioning in my day to day. I still do it, I just have a hard time, a really hard time. It means that I'm over thinking everything, which means that I have an exhausted and overworked mind. It means there's lots of self doubt and feelings of inadequacy. It means withdrawing. It means drinking too much. Worst of all it means being way too hard on myself. I start to think "what's wrong with you, why can't you handle this".
These are the things I know prompt the downward spiral:
1. Taking on too much professionally. "Yes, I can do that". "Okay, I'll come in on Saturday." etc. etc. etc. I've mentioned before that my work ethic largely defines me. Work is important, it's how I pay my bills and it's what's going to allow me to retire at 50. I don't need to be an "exceptional" employee to do those things though. I can be an "exceeds expectations" or god forbid even a "meets expectations" employee at this point. I've climbed the latter. In my head I'm okay with where I am professionally but something always keeps me going. Habit maybe?
To stop the madness I took Thursday and Friday off. I wish I could say I wasn't online (but I was) and that I didn't think about work (but I did). At least I was home though right? That's a start.
2. Over extending in my social life. This space has opened me up and made me so much more aware of myself. I know for a fact that my social life is thriving because of that. I can't explain it exactly but over the course of the last 4 months I've met and connected with so many new people (irl) because of my blogging. There have been trips to the gym, happy hours, parties, weddings, weekend visits etc. I don't think I've had any downtime since before the 4th of July. That's fantastic, but there's got to be balance.
As much as I hated to do it, I had to cancel my plans for this weekend in pursuit of some "stay at home and do nothing time" (see the photo above). I've been listening to Pandora, trying like hell to avoid tv and social media, cooking (3 days in a row bitches) and sleeping a ton. I don't feel completely rested, but I'm getting there.
3. Being too wrapped up in my iphone, ipad, tv etc. I mean think about it, when you're perusing the internet for hours on end your brain is hopping from one thing to the next in a matter of minutes. Shopping online, scrolling, scrolling, scrolling, constant movement, constant stimulation. When you start taking your phone to the bathroom with you so that you can browse IG, you've got issues.
On Friday and again today I will not touch my phone or the ipad. I don't want to be connected to anything but me. And no more taking my phone to the bathroom #ridiculous.
4. Looking back. There are times I think I'm petty for not putting aside my feelings and pursuing relationships I use to value. It gets to the point where I'm about to reach out and then something happens and I'm reminded of why I stay away. The thing is there's always going to be "something", some kind of drama and for someone who takes things in as much as I do, it's too much to deal with. I don't stay away because I don't love these people. I stay away because I love myself more. Even cracking the door to the possibility of a relationship leaves me reeling.
The thing is, life is a never ending cycle of ups and downs. There's nothing to say that you won't relearn the same lessons over and over again. What's important is that you try your darnedest to improve these areas of your life and that you take the steps you can to make the landing a little smoother each time around.
That's it for today.