Thursday, May 1, 2014

Mental Health: Turning Negative Thoughts to Positive Ones

I'm a slacker.

Here's my excuse:
This has been a tough year (January and February), emotionally. I would come home completely drained, and still have documentation to write, which means I had to relive the day. I would then watch TV shows that allowed me to escape reality for a little while. I would have anxiety dreams of all kinds at night, and do it all over again the next day.

I am just now (at the end of April) getting over the stress that hit me in January and February and March.

I am new to this whole 'dealing with people' thing in the way that they manipulate words and ask leading questions, and pry, and gossip, and manipulate others around me so that I am entangled in a web of deceit and emotional trauma and drama.

I asked others for help, and was given assignment after assignment and change after change to make. I was given direction after direction and made every effort to keep trying new things. I struggled. I limped along. I cried. I tried to find my grip on the edge of truth, justice, and sanity. Finally, the persons who instigated this drama got fed up and left. I must not have played into their hand the way they wanted. I'm counting it a victory.

Then another drama came along. I, in my lack of tact and wisdom and maturity, did not approach the persons involved professionally and just say the words plainly and privately. I have some guilt with that. I also have not been taking good data. I am really guilty and upset over that.

I have to pick myself up instead of beating myself up. I have to create a new beginning. I can start the data collection now. (Why is there so much data collection?!? Can I have an aide just to do data collection?!?)

While this may help solve my problems, the point here is to look at how I turn negative thoughts:
"I'm such a failure."
"I can't do this."
"I want to quit."
"I'm a slacker."

into positive ones:
"I just need to reorganize."
"I need to step back and rethink things."
"I need to talk to that person."
"I can do this. It will take time, but I can do this."

I accept them. I can't fight myself. These are problems that need solving.

When I was able to solve the problems, my dreams returned to vacationing instead of fleeing. The getaway that I truly desire is not one that makes me run with fear and trepidation.

More than anything, I have been dreaming of writing. I have been dreaming of summer. I could use a writer's retreat! I could also use a massage, and yoga lessons, and a hot tub, and a pedicure...

But I digress.

The truth is, I have to admit that I am not a slacker. I have had to divert my efforts and energies into pursuits I am less passionate about and find less fulfilling. I have had to give 13 tests. I have had to write 10 papers. I have had to pay bills, register for a big exam, work out my sons' school locations for next year, be a Mom, a wife, and a teacher. I have had to juggle life a bit.

I may be writing an excuse, but it is not a complaint. I have learned so much this year! I have learned that it is time I grew a set of balls. It is painful to grow a set, but once they are in, directing others will be easier. I'm way too nurturing, accommodating, and respectful of other's feelings to step on toes, even when they need stepping on.

I can learn, painful as it is. I can deal with people. I can get my work done, manage my time, and still watch a little mind-numbing  TV at the end of the day.

I can do this.

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