Duress

When I am under duress, stress, pressure of an incoming avalanche, I freeze.

I go round and round in circle, spend half an hour working on an email. Checking, rechecking, making sure I don’t look stupid.

I go on walks in my head and spend 5 hours to do two powerpoint slides. I re-read my slides five time over trying and change it a million to see if there’s a hole, there’s a gap or that I’m simply sounding stupid.

And last week someone clearly thinks I am stupid as my work products had holes. Gaping holes that was so rudimentary I bet he was wondering how I got the job at the first place. I hyperventilated deep inside. My speech turned to blabber and I became incomprehensible. It was awful. It was awful but it did not make me want to kill myself.

Which is an improvement on its own.

I didn’t even tear. I didn’t think the world is crumbling. I didn’t think that I should just pack up my back and go. I didn’t think that all hope was lost.

I looked at the piece and see where the gaps were. Estimated how long it would take me to fix it. And did another estimation on how long it would *really* take me to fix it. I started fixing it and left work at 6pm. It was Friday. I had socialising to do with some new people I met in Confest that I’d rather get to know than spending another 4 hours ruminating on how incompetent I am at this job.

And I came back to work on Saturday. I spent 6 hours ruminating, staring at the document and tore it apart and put it back together and tear it apart again and put it back together again. It was painful. My stomach was cramping. And I had to throw the towel at 5 pm. Took some pain pills and went to sleep. Cramps were killing me.

I still think I should know better. I still aim for perfection. I still wish I am smarter or a faster thinker or a better person in general. But in all honesty, I am not as worried as I used to be in the past. I know I will get through this. And I know I always think things are worse than they really are.

If something is broken, I will fix it. For now, I will not feed my monster.

 

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So….

I still need this after all.

I thought this blog will just make me focus on the negative. So I started a much lighter, happier and more positive blog/instapage.

Well that did not last.

Contrary to my belief, wish, hope, dreams of hot balmy nights, I am not as well as I’d rather be.

I need this outlet. I need to write. I need to sometime just write whatever works in my head. And this blog is for that.

I am unwell and it’s okay.

One step at a time, one breath at a time. Still alive. And kicking

#highfive

Yogaing in Tears

Feeling like a failure.

Had a good run with morning exercise this week so I went to another one yesterday morning. Felt great coming in to the office. Worked for an hour in my zone until my underling came in. She’s been having a hard time with the project as it’s a misresourced and mismanaged one. We are all frustrated.

I just didn’t realise the extent of how much we influence each other with my mood. When she gets stressed, it stresses me out and I’ll get harder on her. She’ll lash out to others and it’s just a vicious cycle.

I was aware of this.

Yet it was hard to manage.

I was aware I was getting angrier as I was working with one of the leads as I don’t really know where things are going. Six week into the project.

I was also getting more upset as I think the underling is just bitching a lot and failing to complete simple tasks. She’s a good worker but it’s almost like her quality of work rebels against the whole situation.

I am just fed up.

The day before, walked inside the clients space on level 7 and I thought about what would happen if I just jump off. Wondered what the clients would do, my team, my boss. Probably business as usual.

The world doesn’t have time to pause just cause one girl can’t get all her shit together.

And that’s probably all I want really. For people to just pause. And think. And freaking do something.

Anyway. Ended up getting influenced by the underling’s mood. And my day was messed up. What’s started good ended so messy.

So today I woke up and did yoga at 8. And it was tough. I couldn’t take my mind off the project. My balance (or lack thereof) was all over the place. I felt like staying in child pose forever.

Tried so hard to mind control my emerging tears to go back inside.

Anyway.

Lessons learnt.

My mood affects other people. I need to start managing how I portray myself in front of other people.

But I guess it’s not a total fail.

All is still well. No bridges burnt yet. I hope.

HONY

Oh such gems.

Anxiety – “The indescribable feeling of nothing”

Ultimate goal – “Get better, try hard. So your kids can have a childhood they don’t have to recover from.’

Maybe I should Quit Drinking

So last week was a relative success.

Went to barre and yoga for three days. Felt fabulous.

This week, planned to the same.

Started well with Tuesday morning class. Had a boost of positivity throughout. It was however 40 degrees Celsius yesterday. Could not sleep. Midnight came, housemates still chatting with a friend in the living room.

Popped my face and saw aircon was on. Decided to join them. Had 3 shots in 2.5 hrs. It was soon 2:30am and I went to bed.

Woke up feeling great and now just feel like murder.

Alcohol is a depressant. I know this, yet I do it anyway.

Why.
Why.
Why.

Different choice next time!

Now to get through the next 2 hours without any destructive thought, get a massage, shower, food, house cleaning and basic business work. Then bed.

New slate tomorrow.

This does not define me. This will change. This will get better.

Also I am the shittiest friend ever. Housemates bdays were two days apart last week. And I completely missed them. Yay you. Yay self-absorbed all is about you, me.

😦

X a Size

Exercise.

My physio told me I should try exercising. So I signed up to the 20$ classpass and hauled my ass to a yoga Nidras class on Sunday. It’s sleeping yoga. Was quite relaxing. However, my back still hurts.

So Wednesday I woke up at 6 and took a barre class in the city.

I had an OK day. Still pissy about things. Still upset about little things. But I slept like a baby.

Woke up and snoozed a couple times. And something switched today after I had my usual vent at project. I decided to try be positive about things. Something ticked. Reminding me of an improv exercise we do. So most funny scene is made of an absurd-straight character. The game is for the absurd character to pick one thing and stick to it no matter what the scene partner throws at him. Continually heightening the stake where the straight keeps egging the absurd. Or the other way around.

For example. If a character just loves hats, he will always relate everything the straight character says back to hats. As simple as that.

It’s not unlike a lot of people I meet everyday actually. The ex CFO on the project who always manage to link any conversation to this one framework that he created. The other org expert who does the same. And even I probably do the same to an extent. Bringing all the findings at work to what I know based on my experience so far.

And that’s how most people function.

The people I admire, however, are able to go beyond their experience. They grow. They learn. They expand their knowledge bank to make sure that whatever challenges life throw at them, they can come from a depth of knowledge instead of hearsay.

Lost my train of thought. I’m going on a tangent.

Oh

So what I’ve done in the past is also bringing everything to my past. I’m that absurd character who always brings everything back to my growing up experience. The stress. The tears. All of it. And if you watch an absurd-straight scene. You know that there’s no reasoning to an absurd character.

But on the flip side.

What if you anchor your absurdity to how much you love life. And the positivity that came with it. So I tried that. Without knowing I did exactly that. When there was an option to be bitchy or happy, I chose the latter.

And it felt good.

It felt like coming home to a house you’ve always wanted to live but have lost the map to.

I just hope I wake up tomorrow in the same place.

Anxiety Triggers

I read this post on anxiety just now. It reads like thoughtcatalog articles but it’s on Huffington Post. Some substance with the right dose of heart?

Had trigger warning at the start of the article. Thought nothing of it.

Result?

Bawled my eyes out half way through.

#liveontheedge

Even as I see myself in the writing, a little part of me still question myself, and hence the writer, whether we are all just lazy and such a waste of humanity for not having enough grit to weather the world like we should. Waking up and not wanting to go to work. Isn’t that the sign of a lazy ass, dole bludger and simply trash of society. Inner voice has no mercy.

Most of the time I’ll stay at home trying to work remotely, fail miserably and end up watching anything that will distract me doing destructive things to myself. For all the slight thought of jumping off a bridge or zonking out on sleeping pills,
I won’t do it. I can’t do it to my parents. I just can’t. Doesn’t mean my head don’t go spinning trying to figure out a way to be without the empty pangs nor the constant state of worries.

So reading that article kinda put things into perspective a little.

One. I’m not alone in trying to get through this. Two. Every aware conscious triumphant moment is a win. It will mean nothing to people around me. It will look like normalcy to most. It will be mediocrity at best.  But it is still a win for me. And that is enough. I don’t need other people’s stamp of approval to be a functioning human being. They’re all too busy minding their own demons anyway. Three. There will be more failures. There will be wins. There will be real normalcies. They are all valid. Just like these tears.

And so I thought about sharing that article on my Facebook feed of 1000 friends. I don’t know most of them anymore anyway so I can at least raise awareness. I, however am not ready to out myself. Future employers, current ones. Too much at stake. Or so it feels like.

So I sent it to my parents and brother. Mum has anxiety. Dad knows I’ve been struggling with fear of failure and validation in general. Brother had depression (suspected. Don’t know for sure. He’s not really a talker lately and we all live thousands miles away). Sent it to a friend who I know struggle as well. And another one who I one day will trust with all my email passwords if I ever get terminal disease. I haven’t told her about my anxietg. But she’s seen and experienced me in all sorts of states. She was on that receiving end of the twelve year old me crying on the phone freaking out over the crinkle in my laminated paper. Not. Perfect. Sounds silly. But I can remember the devastation. And the patheticness of it all. She doesn’t remember. She doesn’t remember most of my hissy fit. My general sense of unfounded worries. Just cause she’s nice like that. Selected amnesia. Of the kindest kind.

The boy? It’s going so well. He’s so understanding. He knows the weather’s not always sunny but he doesn’t know yet how thunderous it gets. I’d like to keep it that way for now. Hopefully I’ll develop my storm charmer routine by the time we shack up.

If we ever do. If I’ll ever be so lucky.

Mindset

Growth mindset vs. Fixed mindset

Growth mindset looks at challenges as opportunities. A room of growth instead of instant risk failure and possibly looking stupid in front of other people. Success comes from process instead of approval.

Rather conflicted on this.

I grew up thinking I could do anything as long as I was given the time and something or someone to learn it from. Which is how I convinced the art teacher to take me despite not taking previous classes. That was half my life ago.

Now I shirk from challenges. Blame others. Avoid stressors. And give up easily. What happened?

Let’s analyse if this is true in the first place.

Facts that supports this: I took up way too many things that I didn’t follow through. Was never really good in tennis, swimming, organ, ballet, sewing, illustrating, writing, now improv. That’s just half the list. Tried muaythai, salsa swing along the way too.

Rebuttal: I stuck around years of tennis, ballet and swimming despite all the constant badgering how sucky I was. Enough that can still play a decent game, taught a friend or two how to tennis, swimming took me diving and snorkling, can improvise organ playing when I want to and still sound ok-ish, still got music in my vein from all those dancing years that shakes the core, sewing is quite a lost cause indeed, I’ve illustrated a tattoo for a friend, T-shirt for another, countless random to which people’s joy in receiving them seem to be much more achievement than my own judgement of the piece. Improv… Made few funnies. And greatest one. Sticking around in high school, post grad years though I was on the brink of insanity. And here I am. Still kicking and breathing. Sometimes we forget that to some of us, just being alive is a struggle on its own. And for every night and morning, we all should be putting ourselves. Well done. Another day of overcoming challenges. Another day of struggle.

It all ain’t that bad. To any degree.

But why do I feel like a failure most often that not.

How do I tell that voice inside my head saying “you always give up. So why not give up already. Why care. Why bother ”
And somehow invite that little voice to speak louder “you can learn anything if you have the time. You have the capacity to grow. Yes you can. Your worth is not tied to other people’s approval”

Case#1