Managing Mental Illness

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I think a direction I would definitely like to go with this blog is the management of Mental Illness. I’ve been mulling over ideas, and I’ve at least come up with something solid. I would like to talk about the day to day victories of living with a mental illness.

I had a bit of an a-ha moment with this idea. I realized that the problem I was facing wasn’t one that had an answer. I was trying to solve mental illness, when I’m in no place to do so. I do, however, have real experience on living with it day to day, and the things I do to keep myself going.

I think this is more important then just building a website. I think that I often forget that there is no cure for this. It’s never going to go away completely. I’ve been chasing that though, a final escape from my condition. And I think it makes me go in circles. I look for things that caused it, I look for what’s going to make me better.

I think I put a lot of extra stress on myself trying to come up with an answer. It’s fruitless because there is no end-game.

If I were to focus my efforts on managing the illness, I might find my efforts more rewarding. Look at my strengths and my weaknesses and figure out where I can go from there.

I’m already learning all the time what my limits are. What I can and can’t do. I may not be ready yet for a full time job, but I’m volunteering at an animal shelter so that I’m prepared with a reference when I am ready to apply for work again.

Just writing this post is making me realize how hard I’ve been on myself. I’ve tried a lot of different things to try to improve my situation, and I think I’ve learned a lot from it. It’s easy for me to look back and just see a mountain of failures. If I were to change my perspective though, I might look back and see that I’ve learned something about myself and my abilities every time I’ve failed. I could even say that it was good that I was at least trying to do something to improve my situation.

When I don’t stick with things it makes it harder to come back to it and start over. I’m really hard on myself when I set a goal and don’t follow through. It scares me out of trying again, for fear of feeling shitty if I fail again. I think it’s important for me to think about trying something even though I failed the first time, or first hundred times. I think I’ll even pat myself on the back for the fact that I’ve started 4 blogs now, and yet I keep coming back. Each one gets better then the last, and each time I grow in my ability to express myself. After the first failed attempt I felt horrible about myself. Now I’m feeling like I can let go a little with the past failures and focus on what I’ve improved.

A week ago I was going crazy trying to come up with ideas for my blog or think about what to do next. I’ve found if I just sit down and start working instead of worrying about it that I always produce something better then last time. I was being so hard on myself for not being able to come up with what needed to be done. I was overwhelmed by how complicated and how much work building a website can be. If I would have done all the same things I did this week without stressing about it, I probably would have completed the same things, except I could have lived with a little less stress on my mind.

It’s so easy to look at the future and see how much work needs to be done, and to feel like it’s too much. While a certain larger direction is needed, I think putting focus on my daily efforts is important. Thinking about how to solve a problem or motivate myself should be more important then figuring out the big picture on a daily basis. I can set aside time to look at the bigger picture, a day to sit down and navigate myself.

I’ll have to start writing down things I do during the day that improve my mood or move me in a good direction. It will be good for me to think in terms of taking things day by day, and seeing the small victories that will lead to bigger victories. It will be useful for me to be able to go back and read things that I used to deal with problems and tasks before.

 

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2 thoughts on “Managing Mental Illness

  1. I’ve found that the saying is absolutely true…take it one day at a time. And I love your idea of writing the things down that make you happy or improve your mood on a given day. I’ll have to do that for myself too!

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