Anxiety, ADHD, OCD… so many labels… hard for me specially to accept and embrace. I am no the one to jump into labels or judgments and that’s because my mind goes into the negative, and I do all I can all the time not to be negative, that has been me, my entire life.
And learning the nuances, fine lines and most importantly silver linings has been key on my journey and breakthroughs. I hate being vulnerable, but who doesn’t. So, to me accepting and embracing my conditions shows weakness, lack of competence, structure, follow through, reliance… But does it really? Or is it me projecting my fears of what I believe people may or might think of me?
So, bottling up ends up being easier right?! Until it isn’t… until you see yourself feeling pressured because of all the standards we set to ourselves. Then you either implode or explode and none of the options produce good outcomes, specially on the ones around us. I know, I have done it over and over… I was doing again this morning.
I was almost turning my selfcare routine into a chore and punishment – “ I need to meditate, connect to source, do my gratitude routine, do workout X, then need to post Y, I need to participate in Z, inspire people, then shower, get ready, get the kids ready, take care of the dog, get gas in the car, air in my tires, bring in the garbage bins and clean the dishes so I don’t get triggered when I come back home later, and do it all timely so I can I be at the office on time for my first meeting of the day with my manager”
That’s my brain all day, every day, all the time… Plus all the other tabs that keep popping up as I notice a different colored squirrel climbing a tree while I’m driving, or get mesmerized by how the sun hits the snow and sparkle and thank God for nature, and for how privileged I am. Then I remember I need to wrap all the Christmas gifts and hide them, do groceries, catch up on laundry while I don’t know where the music is coming from… Meanwhile, I’m worried that if I really don’t do all of that, and if my brain doesn’t stop spinning and if I really don’t focus things could get worse add the financial responsibilities and stress in the mix. By then my heart is pounding hard, my breath is fast, I’m getting dizzy, and feel like I could literally faint at any moment, I hold back tears and just makes me want to give up, throw my hands up in the air, walk away and QUIT!
You guys just read what living with anxiety, ADHD and OCD looks like. Yet I receive plenty of compliments from people – “You’re so positive”, “You’re so centered”, “You really got you shit together”, “You inspire me” … I appreciate it so very much, but if there’s one thing I don’t have, is my shit together, not I don’t. When I receive messages like these I want to go “Man, I’m really wasting my time and potential, I should be in Hollywood making a boat load of money if I can act this well…” but I also feel humbled and most times get tear eyed as I remember – this is validation!
So today, instead of doing workout x, I started with Yoga, I love the reminders I get throughout the practice about how important it is to control our breath and quiet our minds, no, didn’t make the chaos go away, but did make me sweat, stretch my muscles and tendons that were in desperate need for it and definitely got the blood pumping in my body and made me feel good that I still took the time for ME. Then I got ready and got the kids ready, took care of the dog, didn’t do the dishes or brought the garbage bins inside… But, didn’t lose my shit! I did text and got support from people in my support system, I did make an appointment with my therapist, made it to work and to my meeting with time to spare, was blunt honest with my manager instead of fluffing things up and he not only welcomed my updates, I now will work from home a half day on wed to accommodate to my mental health appointment, and have off the entire next week!
Yes, life is challenging but I’m really am making the most of while learning to navigate all, and what truly helped me was embracing and accepting. Being real and honest like I always been with everyone else, but this time with MYSELF. And accepting that showing weakness is sign of strength. The shit show is nothing but white noise to put things in perspective and help recognize the actual contrasts and achievements!
Life doesn’t have to be perfect, it just has to be REAL and HONEST! And I have been living it to the fullest since I became honest and real with myself. Yes, I do take medications to help, yes, I do see a therapist and psychiatrist on a regular basis, yes, some days are tougher, yes, I do need lists, calendars, reminders and some days I don’t get through all of them and forget to start the dryer and have to re-wash that load when swapping loads… but everyone still has clean clothes, I still am managing a house, a career, children, a dog, while building my side hustles and re-building my life including financially, not to mention I have the BEST and strongest support system ever, because I do allow myself time for real and intense connections with people and am not afraid of being raw and honest with them either.
So if you haven’t yet, I strongly advise you get in touch with the person in the mirror, make amends with you past and mistakes, accept and embrace, seek and accept help, share your fears, shed the tears… It’s not easy, not in the slightest, but completely WORTH IT!