We are all both good and bad, it is not an either/or position. The more honest we can be in acknowledging our dark side is the first step to claiming our imperfection. Ideally over time we can reduce our pile of internal bad. Think of yourself developmentally — through the age of 27 the dark side may be more than 50%. Then in our 30′s and 40′s we start chipping away at it through self-awareness so the bad gets smaller. (Ask anyone over 40 if they would start over again and the answer is likely to be “No.”) One of the goals in life is the ongoing process of making the bad smaller. Therefore, being able to tolerate bad feelings about yourself is crucial to learning and growth. One exercise to reduce anxiety is to make a list of all the “shoulds” you burden yourself with. This pile of “shoulds” is one of the ways you erase having any room to breathe. Sort out which are the “shoulds” you agree with. Years ago when I carpooled little kids to nursery school I would make a wrong turn on purpose and I was amazed at their anxiety. I would soothe them with how important mistakes are in life, because they seemed so insulated, as many suburban people are, from the notion that mistakes could be good. Our American culture feeds this point of view with the myth of success. Anxiety erupts it’s ugly head when we expect things to be a certain way. All our vacations should be sunny every day & we expect our lives to be stuffed full of happiness and certainty. Other cultures don’t have the same expectations. We can learn a lot from Asian culture, for example. Their idea of life is much more encompassing. Pain and setbacks are expected, not ignored. The reality of the complicatedness of life is more accurate. Happiness is understood to be a byproduct of life choices not an end goal. We could reduce our anxiety if we could pursue this frame of reference. From “Anxiety, Control & Codependency” by Rhoda Mills Sommer, L.C.S.W. http://therapyideas.net/anxiety.htm
If something bad happened
just do this 3 things.
and third accept
that it happened.
Kenneth de Guzman
Mate after mate we find ourselves trying to adapt to who they want us to be till eventually we lose our true identity. We spend countless years learning each mate but never take the time to learn ourselves. In the end we know our mates better than we know ourselves. If and when the mate walks away we are stuck living with a stranger, ourselves. If u can’t find comfort in yourself how can anyone else find comfort in you? Al-Saadiq Banks
You’re reaching out
And no one hears you cry.
You’re freaking out again
‘Cause all your fears
Remind you another dream has come undone.
You feel so small and lost like you’re the only one.
You wanna scream ’cause you’re
You want somebody, just anybody
To lay their hands on your soul tonight.
You want a reason to keep believing
That someday you’re gonna see the light.
You’re in the dark
There’s no one left to call
And sleep’s your only friend.
Well even sleep
Can’t hide you from all those tears
And all the pain and all the days
You wasted pushing them away.
It’s your life, it’s time.
As more adults are being diagnosed with ADHD, mental health professionals are learning that the major problems faced by these adults occur in their interpersonal relationships. The primary reason that adults with ADHD have poor interpersonal relationships is that they have underdeveloped social skills, the major one being empathy. The way the spouse of the ADHD partner often copes with this lack of empathy is to become codependent. Codependence is defined as a state of mind where you put your needs and dreams aside in order to help the other person have a life. Kindness is doing these kinds of things sometimes and having a balance of give and take in a relationship. In a codependent relationship, no matter how much you give, the other person does not return the favor. Yet you keep on giving, getting more fatigued, frustrated and resentful. Codependence leads to micromanaging the ADHD members of the family. Because the ADHD members are doing everything they can to quell the busy brain in their heads and to manage the main duties of life, everything else gets dropped. The codependent person picks up what is dropped along with managing his or her own life. The codependent eventually burns out. To get beyond codependency, you need to explore self-care. The codependent person needs to recognize that he/she counts just as much as the people they are protecting. By breaking the cycle of codependence, you are giving back, to your spouse and to your children responsibility for their behavior. The first step toward your recovery and theirs, is accepting responsibility for your behavior and your life and letting them accept responsibility for theirs. After all, how can they develop responsibility if you do it all for them? From an article by Kathy J. Marshack, Ph.D., P.S. http://www.addresources.org/?q=node/267
Codependents are reactionaries.
But rarely do they act.
They react to the problems,
pains, lives, and behaviors
of others. They react to their
own problems, pains, and behaviors.
Anxiety is loving certainty. It is stressful to live in an anxious world, and learning to embrace uncertainty seems impossible to those suffering with anxiety. We must each find a strategy to help us shuttle back and forth between the comfort of what we know, and the discomfort of all that we don’t know to become healthy. Anxiety is about fear being in charge of most of your choices. Getting stuck in fear robs you of possibilities in your life. An example of this is when you are too afraid to make mistakes. Making mistakes is the lynchpin to learning, in fact we learn far more from our mistakes than our successes. If you have anxiety you must learn to use your thinking to balance your exaggerated feelings of fear. Courage is the ingredient that, if sprinkled on that world, would make all of us better people. Greater courage is the antidote to anxiety. Learn to imagine new ways to have courage and to make your world larger. Real courage always has fear attached. Fearless courage is only the foolishness of youth. Follow your curiosity and try new small steps out into the world instead of waiting for life to happen to you. Invite fear to take a back seat instead of driving the train. Fear and excitement always travel together. Remember being scared of learning to ride a bicycle and being excited at the same time? Learn to allow room for both emotions. Don’t let fear erase excitement. Growth depends on one foot being in the familiar and one foot in the unfamiliar… Confusion is the emotion that is crucial to “allowing room for change,” which is exactly why adolescents are both confused and changing. From “Anxiety, Control & Codependency” by Rhoda Mills Sommer, L.C.S.W. http://therapyideas.net/anxiety.htm
The fear of becoming old
is born of the recognition
that one is not living now
the life that one wishes.
It is equivalent to a sense
of abusing the present.
Bipolar disorder, although rare in young children, can appear in both children and adolescents. The unusual shifts in mood, energy and functioning that are characteristic of bipolar disorder may begin with manic, depressive, or mixed manic and depressive symptoms. It is more likely to affect the children of parents who have the illness. Twenty to forty percent of adolescents with major depression go on to reveal bipolar disorder within five years after the onset of depression. Depression in children and adolescents is associated with an increased risk of suicidal behaviors. This risk may rise, particularly among adolescent males, if the depression is accompanied by conduct disorder and alcohol or other substance abuse. In 2000, suicide was the third leading cause of death among young males, age 10 to 24. (National Institute of Mental Health) NIMH-supported researchers found that among adolescents who develop major depressive disorder, as many as seven percent may die by suicide in the young adult years. Therefore, it is important for doctors and parents to take seriously any remarks about suicide. Early diagnosis and treatment, accurate evaluation of suicidal thinking, and limiting young people’s access to lethal agents—including firearms and medications—may hold the greatest suicide prevention value. https://www.mentalhealthscreening.org/screening/resources/men-and-depression.aspx
Mental pain is less dramatic than physical pain,
but it is more common and also more hard to bear.
The frequent attempt to conceal mental pain
increases the burden: it is easier to say
“My tooth is aching”
than to say
“My heart is broken.”
Worrying can be helpful when it spurs you to take action and solve a problem. But if you’re preoccupied with “what ifs” and worst-case scenarios, worry becomes a problem. Unrelenting doubts and fears can be paralyzing. They can sap your emotional energy, send your anxiety levels soaring, and interfere with your daily life. But chronic worrying is a mental habit that can be broken. You can train your brain to stay calm and look at life from a more positive perspective. Constant worrying takes a heavy toll. It keeps you up at night and makes you tense and edgy during the day. You hate feeling like a nervous wreck. So why is it so difficult to stop worrying? For most chronic worriers, the anxious thoughts are fueled by the beliefs—both negative and positive—they hold about worrying. On the negative side, you may believe that your constant worrying is harmful, that it’s going to drive you crazy or affect your physical health. Or you may worry that you’re going to lose all control over your worrying—that it will take over and never stop. On the positive side, you may believe that your worrying helps you avoid bad things, prevents problems, prepares you for the worst, or leads to solutions. Negative beliefs, or worrying about worrying, add to your anxiety and keep worry going. But positive beliefs about worrying can be just as damaging. It’s tough to break the worry habit if you believe that your worrying protects you. In order to stop worry and anxiety for good, you must give up your belief that worrying serves a positive purpose. Once you realize that worrying is the problem, not the solution, you can regain control of your worried mind. Authors: Melinda Smith, M.A., Robert Segal, M.A., and Jeanne Segal, Ph.D., http://www.helpguide.org/mental/anxiety_self_help.htm
If a problem is fixable, if a situation is such
that you can do something about it, then there
is no need to worry. If it’s not fixable,
then there is no help in worrying.
There is no benefit in worrying
Dalai Lama XIC
So, what causes men to move on so quickly from a breakup with you to the arms of another woman? You could easily believe the rapidity of his action indicates he isn’t at all broken up about your breakup, that he had no deep feelings for you and he cavalierly is humming to himself, “Another One Bites The Dust.” They would, however, be completely wrong. You see, when men invest emotionally in a relationship, their feelings run as deeply as yours, whether they show it or now. So, when their relationship crumbles, it causes a huge emotional void. …men don’t have the social support network to buoy them up in their time of pain and sadness. If they thought that kind of behavior would be acceptable, they might engage in it. But men are all too aware that stoicism, soldiering on, and “walking it off” are fundamental guidelines in the male handbook… He’s hurting, but he can’t tell anyone. And grieving and wallowing in private are likely to only lead to consuming mass quantities of Jim Beam to dull his pain. Thus, he realizes, with such limited options available, he must speedily move to contain his about-to-erupt emotions by filling the vacuum created by the demise of his previous relationship. How does he do this? By seeking out someone else to focus his attention on, both emotionally and sexually. And, the sooner, the better, for it is this new woman who heals his wounds by allowing him to step back into the comfortable, acceptable space of being the tough, unruffled man that he is supposed to be. She facilitates his return to a state of being where he can once again feel masculine and in control of himself and his emotions. Order is restored and all is right with the world again. The speed in which a man moves from a bitter breakup to a new amorous attachment is directly proportional to the pain he’s feeling — the deeper the hurt, the quicker the hookup. So if you see your ex in the arms of another within days of your breakup, don’t write him off as a horny, uncaring, slime-bucket. Instead, recognize that he was deeply hurt by the end of your relationship and is doing the best he can to mend his broken heart. Taken from an article by David M. Matthews, http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/06/05/rebound-relationship-why-_n_1569001.html
doesn’t always mean
you are weak;
sometimes it means
that you are
to let go.