Tag Archives: calm

WELL-BEING TECHNIQUES // 3 Things

June 24, 2016

 

3 Things

This is a simple and practical exercise to remind yourself of your greatness. Loving and accepting yourself is crucial to good mental health and well-being.

So, take some paper. And write:

  • 3 nice things that someone said about you.
  • 3 nice things you’ve done for others.
  • 3 good memories.

Always keep your list near you – in your diary, journal or organiser.

Read it often. Remind yourself often, how wonderful you are.

Onwards, Kiki xox

” You are smart, you are kind, you are beautiful and you are important.”

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For more advice:

Depression & Anxiety

Well-being techniques

Fibromyalgia

DEPRESSION, CHRONIC ILLNESS // You are strong

March 30, 2016

 

you are strong

‘You are strong!’ I can’t tell you how many times my loved ones have told me this over the years. Time and time again. I rarely believed it. I felt nothing like a strong person. I felt weak and timid and useless.

Strength and depression are not usually bandied about in the same sentence. It’s not something that a sufferer would think about themselves. When you suffer with depression and crippling anxiety, the last thing you feel is strong. You relate far more to a timid mouse! A lion? No! Continue reading

Techniques – Just be

May 4, 2015

just be may 2015

When your world is consumed by anxiety and depression, you have an overwhelming need to find the solution. It’s like looking for the golden ticket, the ticket to freedom. You try every which way to think yourself out of the nightmare you’re in.

I know. I still do it from time to time. But take note my friends. The worst thing you can do to perpetuate the anxiety, is to constantly search for the answer. It is the over-thinking that causes the problem.

In my experience and over my journey, I have tried every therapy, every medication, every diet and every supplement. All in an effort to finally rid myself of this beast. I wholeheartedly believe that each one brings benefits of some sort, along the way. And each has a place in recovery.  But the truth is that sometimes the ‘searching’ and ‘trying’ to ‘fix’ yourself, can make matters worse and prolong the pain.

Learning to see that the fight is making you more stressed will actually bring relief. So I tell you right now. Stop! Stop looking. Stop trying so hard. Just BE.

Right now, if u are or have been in a constant state of anxiety and depression for some time, then I can guarantee that your poor body and soul are exhausted. Exhausted from the fight and looking for the miracle that will bring your old self back.

Well there is a miracle. It is acceptance and allowing yourself to just be. You will heal. Time will heal you if you just step out of your own way. If you take one thought away from this blog post, then let it be this: you do not need to fight any more.

Learning to not fight, to accept myself, as I am right now, has given me immeasurable freedom and peace.

Anyone who suffers anxiety knows that feeling when you believe that you are your own worst enemy. If only you could stop thinking. If only you were stronger. If only you could stop these horrible thoughts.

If I just say to you. Stop fighting. You will be ok. Your confidence will return. But that confidence and peace will only return if you give yourself a break. The healing process takes time. There is no immediate cure. But if you look after yourself. Look after your battered body and soul then peace will return. The key is patience.

There is always some pressure for us to be well and whole right now. This day, this week, this month. But, at this point in your life you are not quite there. The reason doesn’t really matter. What matters is that right now, in this moment, you have to care for yourself and let yourself off the hook. Say to yourself that right now you are anxious and low. But if you can give yourself a break, take time out. Stop thinking and just be, then the healing will begin.

I read an interesting article on the subject that included this sentence: ‘Don’t say yes when you mean no, and don’t say no when you mean yes!’. This sentence really resonated with me. All too often I am in a place where I say yes to things, when really inside I am struggling and I should be saying no. And its ok to say no. Doing what feels right for you, right now, is the most important thing. Don’t put pressure on yourself. In time, parts of you will return, piece by piece, layer by layer, and you will get back to a place where you can say ‘yes’ again.

Most anxious people I know are very driven people. This drive keeps you strong. But it also keeps you fighting and you’re fighting something you cannot win with boxing gloves. The kind of fight you need is with kid gloves.  You will win by allowing yourself to just be.

As you take the pressure off yourself, you find a peace. It’s OK not to be OK. It’s OK to feel battered. There will be days you can accept it and days that you can’t. But either way, if you stick to a promise of giving yourself a break and just be, you will find that parts of you start to return.

Be black and white about it. The grey murkiness does not help. Say to yourself that right now you need care. Right now you are not as strong as you have been or will be again. And that’s ok. Stick with one route to healing and don’t stray.

When full recovery comes you will be bigger and better than ever. You will be stronger, wiser, more considerate and kind. You will have an understanding of this illness that no one else can have. You will be strong enough to face anything that’s ahead of you, armed with the knowledge that you already managed to get through so much.

Time heals everything. Your body knows what it needs. The constant barrage of thinking and stress is not what it needs. Treat yourself as you would a good friend or as a child. Lots of TLC and no more pressure. Just acceptance. Just being who you are, right now. Time will show you that you have not gone anywhere. Your confidence may be battered right now, but that will heal too. You will be more confident, more you, than ever before. I know how brave you are. I know how strong you are. To have traveled this far, you are amazing in my eyes. Don’t ever underestimate that. So whilst you wait it out, to become strong again, just be.

Onwards and upwards my loves.  Always Kiki xox

Techniques- Let’s pretend

March 24, 2015

lets pretend wear a different mask image

Let’s play let’s pretend. Do you remember that as a child. Pretending to be someone else, usually a grown up or a doctor or teacher. It was a game that offered hours of fun pretending to be someone else. Playing make believe.

Now I’ve dabbled with acting over the years. But what we are talking about here today is about wearing a different hat for a few hours. Putting a smile on. About pretending you are ok when in fact inside, you feel like crap or like a bag of Jelly.

Over the years, having lived as a depressive and anxiety sufferer, it was always hard for me to show the world my true self when I was depressed or anxious. My self at my very worst and most vulnerable. This has generally only been seen by those closest to me. Historically, if I’m in a bad way I tend to pull back from socialising and mixing with others until I’m strong enough to face everyone again, with a smile. That’s the way I like to do it. Thats my coping mechanism.

I may be a depressive but I’m actually a pretty happy person. I don’t actually like to bring down the mood of a friend or situation. So when the time is right and I’m somewhere between heaven and hell, I wear my ‘I’m fine‘ hat. A bit like Worzel Gummidge. I change heads. To the Kiki that I really am. The KIki who isn’t depressed or anxious. I pretend.

Now you may think this seems crazy or far fetched. The truth is many people use this technique every day. It is a rare thing to see the open and naked truth of a person every day. We all use little techniques to get through.

Over the years when I’m wearing the ‘I’m fine’ hat. Or that smile. I’m pretending I’m ok. And what I’ve found over the years, is that if you pretend for long enough, some of it becomes reality. I pretend I’m ok. So I am ok. The make believe becomes a reality.

What this does again, is change your focus. Rather than being consumed inside your head thinking all the negative thoughts and preempting every possible anxious situation, you pretend that you’re ok. The person you are at your best. Or the best version of yourself. You pretend all is well. You pretend what ever makes you feel strong and happy.

Its about giving yourself a break from the reality of what’s really going on inside. If you can pretend for a few hours that you’re doing ok. You might actually find that you start to feel ok. That you gain some strength and momentum that actually spurs on the next stage of recovery. To actually be ok.

It’s not about misleading anybody. It’s about giving you strength. Taking care of your battered heart and soul. Not everyone wants to bear their raw soul. And to be honest, in my experience most people don’t want to see it. They have enough of their own soul to deal with. And that is fine. It’s your soul, so treat it with kid gloves. It’s faking it ’til you’re making it. It’s About tricking your own mind into thinking that you’re just fine even if you’re not.

So the next time you’re low or anxious try taking some deep breaths and tell yourself the words ‘I’m fine’ and although it may be the furthest thing from the truth it actually changes how you feel. Your body relaxes, tension releases.

Another way to instantly improve your mood is to smile. By smiling you release happy chemicals. You cannot be anxious if you’re smiling! So smile away. Pretend you’re fine. If nothing else it buys you time to work on being fine. Fake it whilst you make it. And I promise that there will come a day where you don’t have to pretend any more. You will be fine. You will make it!

Let me know your thoughts. Love and hugs, Kiki xxx

Depression – Gauge symptoms

March 10, 2015

gauge symptoms march 2015

 

This may seem an unusual one. But, during my darkest days my mum encouraged me to gauge each day and sometimes each moment on a scale of 1-10. I can assure you that at first I was a 10! But as days passed I may have had 10 minutes or an hour where the darkness and fear were not so bad. From this I could gauge myself as maybe a nine. This simple tool made all the difference to me, as it allowed me to see my progress, no matter how small. This progress gave me hope and strength to keep fighting on.

In the early days you feel you will never get through. The days are so long and every hour is like a lifetime. But when the light comes, even for the shortest time, you can see improvements. But unless you are gauging, you may miss these improvements and you will continue to feel overwhelmed. It will feel like nothing is getting better as the bad far outweighs the good. So keep checking in. The slightest improvement is so crucial and worth noting.

It’s so simple. But so effective. What is there worst you have ever felt? That’s a 10. Then Each day ask yourself. How am I today? Could it be you’re a nine. You may have had 10 minutes of freedom from your thoughts. This is positive. Then if one day is a little better than yesterday, then you may be an eight.

The key is to know that even though improvements may be minimal, they are still happening and without you realising this gives you hope and courage to carry on.

Remember your worst can’t get any worse. When you have hit rock bottom, the only way is up! So you can only improve. Over time you will notice little steps, improvements in your mood or less anxiety. On that day you might feel a seven.

Also. Depression is worse first thing in the morning. The minute you open your eyes it is there. But it does improve over the day. You will start to notice this.

I guess the point here is to change your focus. It is so overwhelming when you are so low and anxious. It’s easy not to see any improvements at all in the early days. You want to pull the duvet over your head as you don’t have the strength to fight. But if you change your focus, and notice moments of relief, then you can hold on to these moments as a good thing. As time passes I guarantee that your pain will diminish. By using the gauge in your mind, you will see the improvements. You will find that one morning, without you noticing, you didn’t need to ask yourself how you are. This means that you are definitely on the up!

It’s important to say here that gauging anxiety attacks is a different thing. You can be in the grips of an attack and be at a 10. But it can’t stay that way for long. Within minutes you may feel the anxiety easing and you can gauge this as it’s grip lessens. You may then be only an eight. Then a five. If you suffer both anxiety and depression it might be useful to have two gauges. One for how your mood is and one for your anxiety.

The hardest thing is that depression and anxiety take time to heal. You may have to wait for medication or therapy to start taking effect. Whilst you’re waiting keep gauging and let those moments of freedom give you hope. All will be well eventually. You are so brave for holding on. But it will be worth it.

Let me know your thoughts, Always Love, Kiki xxx

Depression/Anxiety -Time Travel

March 6, 2015

 

time travel quote image bitd

If you are depressed it is likely you are living in the past. If you are anxious, it is likely you are living too much in the future.

Try to live in the present. In real terms, all we have is the right NOW. The NOW soon becomes the past and with it you can harbor strong negative feelings which then influence your future. So if you live in the moment and don’t travel back and forth in time to the past or the future you will find more peace.

Have faith that you already have everything you need within you to equip you to face each present moment. Worrying about what is coming with ‘What if’?’s is only going to make you afraid of the future. You may think that given your past, you will always feel this way. But the truth is if you can live right now, then you are already influencing your future in a more positive way. When you live with ‘What if?’s you are making the present moment anxious and therefore in no time at all it becomes an anxious memory and so continues the vicious circle of anxiety.

Its not easy at first. Particularly if your mind is full of noise. But with practice it does become second nature. When you find your thoughts are time travelling, back and forth, remember to bring your attention back to the present moment. To the here and now. Focus on your breath, or a sound around you, something as simple as the clock ticking. Feel the life within you and take in all that’s around you. Breathe. Take little steps at first as It will feel strange. Just do bring yourself back as often as you can.

As you become more present you will see that you have everything within you that you need to face that moment and your confidence will increase.

Living in the past is futile and has a terrible drain on you emotionally and physically. There is NOTHING good that comes from it. Particularly reliving negative events. Happy memories are different, they fill the soul with joy. We all need to hold on to these thoughts and feelings. But looking back on bad things that have happened only makes you feel bad in the here and now. And the purpose for all of us is to live. No matter how bad things have been in the past. See it for what it is and then try to not focus on it.

In reality the past has gone. It no longer exists. Only in your mind. You only have now. As you become more present you will feel the hold of the past fall away. You will never forget, but it will no longer have the hold on you. It has no use to you if you want to move forward and live a fulfilling and peaceful life of well-being and balance.

With practice you will realise that in living each moment in the now, you are creating good memories. Moments that fill your heart with joy. When your mind wanders in the present, pull it back. The more present you are, the more joyous life becomes. Living too far ahead or too far in the past has no benefit.

I have ‘time traveled’ as long as I can remember. It had become a habit that I didn’t even know I had. But having read some incredible articles on being mindful I am learning that there is a peace to bringing yourself back to the here and now. I am still practicing daily but I am already seeing the benefits.

So live now, if you can. Enjoy the life force that pumps through you. Enjoy your loved ones, your family, your friends, your work and your hobbies. Let the noise in your head, that  wants to pull you back to the safety of thinking, go. I promise it will bring a peace that you may not have experienced before.

Please let me know your thoughts and comment below. Good luck. Huge hugs K xxx

Important Note

Please remember that this advice is generally more helpful as you come to terms with your anxiety and depression. I want to assure you, that at the very beginning, when anxiety consumes you, you may find it hard to do anything remotely like this. This is OK! You need time to adjust. You need time to come to terms with what is happening to you. Take the time to get medical assistance and educate yourself and as some sense of self returns, when you feel a little stronger, then please start to look at these techniques as help in your journey to recovery, K xxx