This is something I feel pretty much on a daily basis. Trapped.
It’s a horrible feeling, especially since every time I try to reach out and grasp onto something meant to help pull me out, I seem to get trapped all over again and have to struggle to find my way back out again.
It’s exhausting. It’s depressing. And it’s often unexplainable & unrelatable to a lot of people in my life that I wish understood it better.
A few weeks ago I had a bit of a rough day (to say the least) and I cried to my boyfriend about how I felt so trapped in my head, and I was so exhausted all the time of having to be aware, or trying to remember what skills to use to help me in what situations. I tried to explain to him that even just small things that most people do without thinking about them take a lot of concentration & effort, especially I’m feeling unstable. Simple things like making a meal can sometimes go wrong so quickly, and he has a hard time grasping what is going on in my head & why it’s so hard for me.
It’s not his fault, of course. He tries his best, and he’s oh so patient with me. And I’m honestly glad that he doesn’t really understand, because it means that he hasn’t had to deal with this sort of frustration and pain on the level that I am.
One important thing I’m learning on my journey through life is how important it can be to keep your cool, or just be calm. I worry and stress a lot just on my own, but since I pick up on the emotions of people around me so easily, this sometimes gets really hard to deal with. I already have a hard time staying calm when it’s just my own things, but when it has other people involved too…well that can be a lot harder.
This spread was inspired by another spread, though the things on the list were how to stay calm during a busy work day. I thought to myself, “This would be awesome to put in my journal if it was geared more towards my everyday life.”. So after some thinking, this is the end result! And yes, it says to take a deep breath or to breathe more than once, but I think it’s really important to do throughout the whole process, even after you’ve calmed down. It can be so easy to just forget to breathe sometimes!
I decided to get this book a while ago because I’d been noticing that my anger was suddenly out of control. I went from being this person who rarely felt anger (or so I thought) to being someone who felt angry all the time, and it made me really uncomfortable. I knew something had to be done, so I bought the book and also started seeing a counselor who helped me with my anger. Here are some of the notes I took on it!
When I first really started to notice my anger, it took me by surprise. In the past anytime I had been even remotely angry I would have a good cry over it and not actually feel that angry at all. I often felt ashamed, stupid, weak or powerless, ridiculed, betrayed…but I didn’t really felt like I was actually angry. I just thought I was a person who didn’t ever really get angry.
Wow, I can’t believe March is already (almost) over! This month felt like it went by really fast, but I have been keeping fairly busy so that definitely makes the time feel like it’s just flying by.
Today I’ve been spending some free time going over plans for April & checking out how I did for March. I am really excited for April, and am really proud of my progress from March. At the end of February I decided I wanted to focus on my mindfulness, thus, Mindful March was born. If you check out that post you can see a bit more info about it!
So a quick recap of what my Mindful March consisted of:
Major focus on Mindfulness in my DBT books
Daily Mindful tracker (I’ve called mine Mindful Life)
I talk about a few things in this post that might upset or trigger someone. Please be warned that this post is about a little ‘fight’ with my boyfriend and I do talk about some negative thought processes.
Sometimes my emotions are easy to decipher, like when I’m happy or calm. They are steady and not wavering, and if they happen to change they do so slowly and not erratically. But other times it often feels like someone took a box of discarded emotions, shook it up, opened it and dumped it all onto my lap at once and I’m trying to frantically get a hold of them but I don’t know where one starts & another begins. Sometimes people don’t seem to understand how exhausting this can be, and a lot of the time they don’t even know it’s going on. Sometimes it comes on so quickly that I’m not able to get on top of it and use my skills to handle it as well as I could, and sometimes I’m already so vulnerable due to other things going on that using skills doesn’t even cross my mind.
The other day I had an eye exam, which I was mildly anxious about. The last eye exam I’d been to was a few years ago, and the optometrist wasn’t very impressed that I kept flinching or blinking during the exams. Of course I wasn’t doing it on purpose, I’m one of those people who doesn’t like anything around their eyes, even their own fingers. So having someone else close to my eyes with weird instruments always has me on edge a bit. After the appointment I felt horrible all day, I kept thinking to myself that I was so useless I couldn’t even sit still and not blink long enough to get my eyes checked. What a failure. No wonder why nobody likes me. The optometrist had every right to be rude and angry. Why am I even alive? This is all so stupid, I just want to die.
I’ve been sharing some of my blog posts on a few groups on Facebook, and I’ve been getting a lot of messages on Facebook about why I started a separate BuJo for my mental health, along with how I decide what to put in it! I hope this helps some people out, keep in mind these are just my personal preferences & geared towards what I find helps me the most, so some of this might not work for you.
Why I started a separate bullet journal for my mental health:
I had too many pages & spreads I was duplicating each year, taking up valuable space in my daily BuJo (also taking a lot of time!).
I don’t like taking pages out of old journals & pasting them into new ones. Most of the spreads had other stuff on the other side of the page (trackers, part of a weekly, etc), so taking it out would just mess things up when I go through old journals to check something – which I do often enough that it’s not worth it to take a page out.
Currently I can fit a whole year into one 250 page A5 journal, and I really like it. If I added all the mental health spreads I wanted to each year, I’d have to split my year into 2 journals for the year and that doesn’t work well for me.