My Mental Health Journey

My Favourite Buddhist Quotes

  • We are shaped by our thoughts; we become what we think. When the mind is pure, joy follows like a shadow that never leaves.

 

  • You will not be punished for you anger, you will be punished by your anger.

 

  • Those who are free of resentful thoughts surely find peace.

 

  • The mind is everything. What you think you become.

 

  • You, yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection.

 

  • Peace comes from within. Do not seek it without.

 

  • Holding onto anger is like grasping a hot coal with the intent of throwing it at someone else; you are the one who gets burnt.

 

  • Your worst enemy cannot harm you as much as your own unguarded thoughts.

 

  • Holding onto anger is like drinking poison and expecting the other person to die.

 

  • There is no path to happiness; Happiness is the path.

 

  • No matter how hard the past, you can always begin again.

 

  • Everything that has a beginning has an ending. Make your peace with that and all will be well.

 

  • Pain is certain, suffering is optional.

 

  • If you light a lamp for somebody, it will also brighten your path.

 

  • If the problem can be solved why worry? If the problem cannot be solved worrying will do you no good.

 

  • One moment can change a day, one day can change a life and one life can change the world.

 

  • If you are facing in the right direction, all you have to do is keep on walking.

 

  • Whatever words we utter should be chosen with care for people will hear them and be influenced by them for good or ill.

 

  • An idea that is developed and put into action is more important than an idea that exists only as an idea.
My Mental Health Journey

Be KIND To Others

So earlier today I posted about the importance of being kind to yourself. I honestly cannot stress enough how important this is. Happiness comes from within, and if you are too busy beating yourself up all the time you will never let that seed of joy grow. 

However. It is also really important to be kind to others. A simple remark can be enough to make some bodies day, or ruin it. I’m sure you have experienced this; you may have received a compliment etc and it has just perked you right up, or dealt with someone unpleasant and your mood has plummeted at the speed of light. Or maybe you are lucky enough that you don’t let others effect you as much. I am not this lucky however (although I am working at it!). 

It can be hard shaking yourself out of a bad mood sometimes. And it can be equally as hard to not take that bad mood out on people you are surrounded by at the time. And again, I will be the first person to admit I am guilty of both of these things. But. After having people take their problems out on me, that I have nothing to do with, one day it hit me; “it isn’t this persons fault that xyz happened, so why should I treat them like it is?”. 

Now this is not to say that you aren’t allowed to feel crappy. Or even behave in a human way. But think of a time you had someone behave in an agressive manner towards you for no reason. And how that made you feel. You may be having a hard time, but that random stranger, or loved one, that you are talking to is probably going through some battle of their own too. And you don’t have to tell them your life story, and listen to theirs, but you can be kind to them, and allow for them to respond in likeness. And if they don’t, just hope that one day they get it too. That kindness is free, but is also priceless with the effects it can bring on not only individuals, but on the whole world. 

I am setting a challenge for myself that every time I get annoyed at someone, either through their actions or words, I am going to try to turn it around. Whether it is by keeping my patience and being polite, or giving them a compliment, or maybe even pointing out a positive they may not have realised/noticed etc. 

Feel free to join me! 

My Mental Health Journey

Be KIND To Yourself

So its been a few days since my “epiphany”, and I am still going relatively well I think.

I was talking to my best friend the other night, about how I was feeling guilty as I had sworn I would take my dog for a walk morning and night every day and I hadnt that day as it was so cold (it had been below 10 degrees Celsius all day), and she told me not to be so hard on myself.

And she is right – it is so easy to get pulled/dragged down by all the weight and pressure society puts on us daily for all most every aspect of life; your eating, your fitness, what you do in your spare time, your physical appearance etc. With all this pressure and negativity from society, why should we be making it worse for ourselves by not only listening to society judging us, but doing it to ourselves too?

No one is perfect. You will have good days and bad days. But rather than beating yourself up for bad events/days, dont let it drag you down. There are always things to be positive and grateful for.

One thing about that little voice of negativity in your head – its mean, and its wrong. If you had a “friend” in your life that spoke to you the way that little (but loud) voice spoke to you, would you still be their friend? Would you speak to your friends that way either? There is a big chance that you answered no to both of those questions, for your own health and wealth being. So why is it ok to speak to yourself that way? It isnt. 

Bad times wont last, and you want always have what you want surrounding you. But the key is to not let it drag you down; rise above it and remind yourself of the positives in your life, and the moment will pass. One thing my councilor told me, which has helped, when that voices starts speaking up, the thoughts are pointless. They only exist to hurt you, and have no other purpose. Tell that voice “I’m not listening to you, you serve no purpose but to provide unhelpful thoughts. Go away”. Practice. It will take time. But it does work for me. At first it seemed silly, but I stuck with it. Give it a go!

My Mental Health Journey

Today I had an “Epiphany” or a Revelation..

As you may have seen from previous posts I have put up in the past week or so, I have been having a rough 1-2 weeks… This has hopefully be turned around today!

I decided about 2 weeks ago, that I would get up early to walk my pug before I have to go to work every day. And then again at night, either when I got home from work, or after I had dinner.

I was yet to bring myself to actually do it. Until today. I decided last night I was getting up and walking my pug in the morning. Granted, I didnt work today so I didnt have to get up at sunrise, but everything has to start somewhere right? So when I got up this morning, at about 8:30am, I made my pre-work out, put on my exercise clothes, put my dog in her harness and off we went. There is a walking path behind our house, and I have intended on walking it since we moved here 4months ago, and today is the first day I have used it. I told myself I would walk for 15mins then turn around and head back. We went a little longer, as it goes behind our old house and I wanted to walk to there, but 40mins and 2kms later we were back home. And I felt great!! I tried to enjoy as much of the walk as I could; the morning sun, the fresh air, moving my body, spending time with my dog, even being amused by how bad my dogs lead skills are lol. I actively concentrated on all these things to get as much joy as I could out of them.

When I got home, I messaged my best friend, telling her how great I felt and that I hoped it wasnt just coincidence, as I was planning to make this my daily ritual, and really hoped that I would be able to retain that happiness past today. I had heard exercise produces endorphins, and my friend confirmed this and said it likely was the walk/exercise. So I am making this commitment to myself, and my beautiful crazy dog, to do this everyday. I will follow through with this. I will make myself get up every morning and do this.

Now, if you are still reading, here is the real nugget I stumbled across in my joyful state; I create my own reality. You create your own reality. Every human being has the ability to create their own reality.

I Choose Happy

As mentioned previously, I have been especially struggling this past fortnight. And majority of my struggles have come from external parties. And you know what? Whilst life is hard, and it will always have its pains along with its joy; I cant control others, to get what I want, but you know what I can control? Myself. And how I respond to events. How I allow others to make me feel. Pulling yourself out a funk can be hard, but be honest with yourself; how many times have you been in a funk and not pulled yourself out of it because you dont want to? You dont want to let go of the anger and the hurt? I will raise my hand and be the first to admit I am guilty of this. There are times when I am feeling shitty, and say to myself “Ok, pull yourself out of this/snap yourself out this etc” and my brain responding with “Why?/Dont want to/Whats the point? etc”. Surely I am not the only one guilty of this.

5 Things You Cant Control

When I was going to see a psychologist a year ago (I have gone in the past and not found it helpful, this time around however I really did), she was talking to me about mindfulness. I dont know how new it is, but it is being used as a non-medication treatment for anxiety primarily, but also for depression. I dont fully understand it yet, but from what I can understand it is about being aware of your actions and surroundings rather than going through life on auto-pilot, and is aided by meditation. I did a mini meditation in one of our sessions, one on breathing (which seems to be a primary intro one, given its relative ease to complete). I use this meditation, only for short periods as allows, most days. I find I use it most nights when I am trying to fall asleep, with my own twist; alot of them will tell you to focus on either your nose, chest, or stomach – I follow my breath as it comes in my nose, and makes it “circle” around my body, with the fresh cold air “sweeping” out the anxiety. I digress however; I intend to begin meditation, and continue walking my dog, and try to change my mindset to create my own happiness.

One of the things I have struggled with mindfulness/meditation is the practice of “observing your thoughts without focusing them”. The idea of this is to allow your thoughts to be, without paying them much heed. To imagine you are laying in the grass and your thoughts are clouds that are to see, and acknowledge, but to watch float by without paying them lingering attention. My thoughts are at times very strong, and refuse to be ignored. Today, however, I was doing the mindless task of sweeping our floor, and my brain wandered down a negative path and was telling me hurtful things. And you know what I did? I told myself that the thoughts were serving no purpose but to cause me harm, and I told them to shut up. And for the most part they have. Everything takes time right?

Just Remember

So my challenge to myself going forward; strive for honest to god happiness. Yeah, not every moment is going to be joy. Life will still throw curve balls at me. But I am going to try so hard to create my own reality, and have it be a good one. I am going to try to post updates too, to keep myself accountable as much to hopefully help any of you reading this going through your own battles, trying to come out smiling.

Please join in on my challenge, and change your mind to change your life 🙂

Our Thoughts

Random Thoughts and Ideas

Generational Gaps, Racism, Stereotypes and Narrow-Mindedness…

I feel as though generation gaps do have so much bearing on how people view others and the world.

Whether this is in regards to acceptance of people’s nationality, religion, sexuality, beliefs, education, etc the list goes on…

One thing I have noticed in particular, that it seems to be as generations are progressing that acceptance is increasing and people are more likely to have an open mind to different ways of living. In saying this, this is me making my own stereo-types.

Lets start with racism… Alot of the older generation seem to harbor alot of racist tendencies. And the worst part is that they dont think that they are being rascist. It is just such a norm, just the way of life, for them. It is as black and white, and factual, as the sun rising every day. Whether this is due to both of the world wars, who knows. I can understand if it did stem from fear caused by the wars, but one thing they dont seem to understand either is that war is created from hate; and the only thing that hate is going to generate is more hate, and fear. And hate and fear arent solving any problems. I have been told, in the past week infact, that “my age makes me responsible to gather all of my young friends and stopping all foreigners from tainting our country”.

Stereotyping is another thing.. The amount of older people who have said to me “You kids, you youngsters, your generation” etc. Its like a general consensus like if you are 30yrs old and younger you are arrogant, and selfish, and immature, shallow and stupid. They then seem mind-blown when we show anything that contradicts their stereotypes.

Anything and everything relating to the LGBT community – men should be men, women should be women, and they should stay that way. Men should be with women, and nothing else. If you are in a same sex couple, then you arent in love. Infidelity and lose of love in a heterosexual couple are more acceptable than a same sex couple. Or a transgender person who just wants to be happy and be themselves.

I feel like as generations pass, certain things are becoming more socially acceptable and people are becoming less judgemental, but there is still too much hatred in this world for my liking.

My Mental Health Journey

My Anxiety is a Living, Breathing Demon

I can feel it. It’s inside me. 

It’s like a squid. Sitting in my stomach. It’s heavy and it makes me feel sick. It’s stretching its tentacles and tightening my chest. I can’t breathe. It’s squeezing my brain. And I’m in agony. 

It’s also like a jellyfish. Giving me fluttering and unease in my stomach. Wrapping its stinging tentacles around my heart, flooding my veins with poison and panic. 

I am worthless. 

My Mental Health Journey

My Anxiety is off the Richter Scale

Lately, I have been feeling so overwhelmed.

And I dont really know what to do.

Like, logically I can say, “make a plan”, or “schedule your time” or “prioritize” etc.

But logically thinking one thing, and being able to follow through on those actions is entirely different. Especially when you feel so overwhelmed that you dont think it would work. You dont know what to do, and yet you are convinced it wont work anyway.

I work fulltime. And have for 9 of the 13yrs of my working life. I prefer the financial stability it offers. Growing up in a single parent home, struggling for money, has pushed me to work harder. The idea of struggling financially as an adult terrifies me.  We have been having some changes at work lately and I am feeling pressure.

We are also at the moment paying two mortgages whilst we wait for our other house to sell. Now, it has only been on the market for about a fortnight, and probably 20 people have shown interest (and we are in a smallish town, so thats not bad), and received a couple of offers, but none of them reasonable. So money is abit tight at the moment. Once it sells and we have the money we will be fine. But we gotta there.

I also study. And this semester I am doing a (mandatory/core) subject/course that I struggle with. Badly. I have started and dropped this course in the past because of how I struggled. However, being a mandatory subject, I thought I would give it another crack. I feel as confident as I do lost with it. Some things just click and are so logical, and other things may as well be a foreign language that I fear I will never speak.

This also gives me anxiety that maybe I am not doing my life right. Like, where I am going in life? Am I making the wrong decisions for myself? And for my partner, by extension?

Among this I want to start losing weight, but dont have the money or time to plan out meals etc, or the time to exercise.

I feel like I am being silly as once the house sells, and when semester is over in a few weeks, my stress level will be so much less. So I need to just “shut up” and get through it.

But..

If anyone has any advice, or anxiety release tips, or time management tips, that you want to share, please do in the comments!!