Things I've done to get out of my Bad Brain Week
I mentioned in my last list that it's been a Bad Brain Week. It's something that has been building for months and came to a head about two weeks ago. I'm feeling calmer now, if not happy or even ok, and these are some of the things I did
- •Went quiet on social mediaApart from Li.st, which I'm not as active on as I am on Twitter/Instagram/Facebook and which I'm counting as therapeutic. I've pulled back massively, not posted anything in several days which is unheard of for me. I still read occasionally to keep up with my friends, but if I feel myself getting sucked in I make myself put my phone down and do something else
- •Was out of the house as much as possibleWhether that's walking, wandering round the areas near my home, going for a coffee...anything where I'm distracted and can't obsess
- •Made thingsI wrote ten pages of a novel. I picked up a colouring book. I cooked. I made up recipes to try. I started a journal and drew and created in it. I edited a video I had footage for. I was just a little bit creative, enough to soothe me
- •Did thingsTidied the flat, meal planned, all the creative stuff above, organised cookbooks. Anything that gave me a sense of achievement and stopped the "I am a useless piece of crap and I'm wasting my life" panic
- •Reached out to (select) friendsWhen I first started getting low I whined a lot on social media. This didn't help. I'd fire out a sad tweet into the void and no-one would reply and I'd panic everyone hated me or I was annoying. And then I saw some tweets by a friend bitching about some unrelated things I'd said whilst low, which didn't help! Instead I met up with two friends for a coffee. I didn't tell them I was depressed - not sure they know. But one-on-one contact reassured me that I am an ok, non-awful person for a while
- •Watched crappy TVFriends and The Big Bang Theory can make me furious if I think about them. So I watched them and didn't think about them. They are formulaic and comfortable and 20 minutes long and incredibly soothing for an anxious, miserable brain.
- •Watched crappy TV WHILST doing something else absorbingMainly colouring, but sewing helps here too. My brain can easily watch a TV show and send me into a meltdown because I'm worrying about other things or obsessing over how terrible a person I am. But give me a TV show and something like colouring which I'm fairly bad at and have to focus on, all I think about is the thing my hands are doing and what's on TV.
- •GroomingOne of the things I'm most miserable about at the moment is my weight and how much I've gained recently (THANKS, COMFORT EATING AS A COPING MECHANISM) so I've been putting extra effort into other areas. Painting my toenails, a face mask, all that stuff. It isn't something I do usually but forcing myself to spend time on my appearance tricks me into feeling like I'm worth it.
- •The stuff I don't want to doShowering, which is the first thing to go when I feel sad. I made myself do it. Exercise - I feel shitty whilst doing it (not physically shitty but emotionally shitty at how bad I am at it and how awful my body is at doing anything apart from housing my brain) but it's something I KNOW is good for me and I feel calm knowing I'm at least doing something. I'm mainly walking (props to my husband for getting me out of the house) and Yoga With Adriene, a YouTuber I highly recommend
- •MopedI feel sad. I'm letting myself feel sad. I'm writing down how sad I feel and why. Running away only makes me feel worse. Feeling sad doesn't make me a bad person, it just makes me a sad person. Accepting that I feel crappy right now and it's ok stops me worrying about it, even if it doesn't stop me feeling crappy
- •So that's what I'm doing right nowI go back to work tomorrow after a week on leave and my time to do all of this is going to be cut in half. Any suggestions of how to stop myself spiralling would be gratefully appreciated