Battling Depression and Anxiety (2) | How I Cope with Everything (without Fairytale Ending, Of Course)

2:08 AM

Many times about depression, people don't get the point that it's all about fighting silent battles. People can easily judge you're fine and ask you to leave those ugly thoughts and feelings. Guess what? It's hardly impossible. People think like it can be forgotten right away like you forgot where you put your glasses just now. Actually, when you ask depressed people to be positive and light up just like that, it's the same as you ask someone who caught flu not to sneeze. It's a 'virus' inside that needs to be subdued.

As those silent battles are inside us, no one would understand... But I want to try to make you understand. So, let me do it first.

If you read the previous post Battling Depression and Anxiety Part 1, you know a little how I go through. Partially. Here's more coz I wrote it in slightly sober mind...

Due to lack of focus, disrupted mind, and dysfunction to anxiety, I found it hard to read books, study, sit still for Netflix. It's so hard to write, too. Well, yes I do have ADD but it's just worsened ever since I had the acute depression. I started to hoard books, developed a habit where I have to turn on my laptop with autoplay with my food recipes playlist on YouTube, just to hear the cooking noise that soothes my mind.

I feel like revenge to its core source. I feel like letting it out.

This phase in life has changed me into something (that people think) I'm not, but I think I should be like this to speak up what I have been silent for so long.

Some part of me admit that when I'm angry, that's because I need to be angry. I need to tell it out. When something is wrong, it's ok to have a reaction to it. I accept it. But the problem for me is that people misunderstand the concept of patience which feels like holding me back to let this out from inside me.

When people threw a shit on you, you should fight it back.... not just stand still and be patient and forgive. Hey no, you have to tell people when they're doing the wrong thing and that could lead to another damage to others. It's sort of becoming a responsibility for a victim to get up and stop the evil cycle. In smallest way possible. Somehow, just to stand up after people make you fall is already the hardest start.

It's exhausting and more work as a victim, I know.

... that's my first revelation.

On the pre-phase I thought, once I got out from bad people environment, it would get better. Unfortunately, I learned something else, a background story, of why and how things had become at my 'new work place' at the time---how it killed me with big disappointments and more anger; my failing relationship; doubts on myself. Moreover, some digital stalkers that got in my way. So, when I already moved out to that 'new work place', things weren't changed. In fact, it got worsened.

After years of depression, started by quarter-life crisis (that I had since I am 19) which brought recurring anxiety attacks ever since I often feel like I'm lost. Even in my own house. I locked myself in my room and still feeling like I wanna go home, but I AM HOME! Does my home feel like no home anymore? Not exactly that.

I had my shrink visit for the first time and haven't got back to the second meeting, until today, I decided not to go back anymore. Well, at least I ticked off one thing of my checklists: whether to go back or not going at all. It's done and decided. Yay!

But after the shrink visit, I had a series of revelation and I felt lighter. The exercise helped me gradually.


And yes, it DID a good start for me.

Then, one thing popped in my head was... why am I always stuck in the repetitive deep shit, the same problem, meeting the exactly the same kind of people and it happened to be worst?

Is it karma? Or, is it because of a sign that I shouldn't runaway? Even so, how should I face it?

After having a little clearer mind thanks for the psychologist visit, the solution came up. Just like that. Like a whisper.

I need to an extreme change. 

So I challenge myself to turn things around. Doing thing I never think I would do: decluttering. Throwing away all the things in the past, or the ones that should be in the trash bin. I started with things and people.

DECLUTTERING TO KONMARI
This revelation came up like a ping from your doorbell. And maybe because I also watch Baby Cobra... therefore I can thank Ali Wong for sharing her read "The Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo". (Watch her on Netflix, please! She's the real feminist!)

As I've been a kind of a person who would decorate her own room with lots of random kinds of stuff being displayed, it's a big start to put a magic in my room into minimalism. But I also developed a habit where I kept unused stuffs, even a packaging of emptied sweets, or skincare I didn't like or I stop using for no reasons. Plus, unused makeups!

It took two huge plastic bags just to pack those skin care and makeups out of my room! There, I also found unused Bluetooth keyboard and stacks of old clothes I never wanted to wear---and some clothes I decided not to re-wear again. I sold those good things online and got the money to buy new clothes to give more color in my wardrobe as most remaining are black or grey.

Turns out that there's a logical explanation why you'd need more space in my room and not being crowded with things, no matter how much you like those things... you need space. Your eyes need to see some 'breathing space'.


... oh I wish I took a photo of those full trash bags, now!

Trying advice to do Konmari for living is like another angel's whispers for me. It popped in my head when my head told me to do extreme change and fvck everything to get myself in control. Result: not that bad! I'm happier. I felt relieve.
My first attempt to KonMari method. Exactly a year ago.

And trust me, it's not easy. As hoarding is a form of my depression, I cried a lot, like crazy, just to get things that are not gonna be used... out of my room. I always feel like those stuffs should be there to keep things that I'm okay with in life to stay put... like in feng shui. And I believe those things contain memories I never want to forget and efforts to appreciate. That's why, it's harder to let them go.

But since the revelations came, I kept telling myself, 'you need to do what you've never done before. Just fuck it! Start new!'

And I have more spaces now to breathe. Those hard feelings and pain are gone with those things I let go. That involved crying a lot while putting those things into the trash bags.

That also means, some books and toys will be in boxes to make it look neater.  How long does it take for my room only? Two months!


I also declutter people. I've relooked how I've been treated, misunderstood and all. Sometimes, you need to stand up cold to those people who look for you when they need you and don't care if you're busy, sick, in trouble... or sleepy (I can get text from people asking for attention at 2AM or 4AM).

These people are toxic. Once you know people don't really care about you as much you do, leave them. Build walls and distance. That's for the best. Don't waste your time and energy. I've been a sincere person and I don't see it a good thing to do.

Choose to whom you should be sincere, not everyone deserves it.

SLEEP
Technically when you sleep, your body will manage your metabolism (repair the broken cells, and some source say you can get flatter tummy if you have much enough sleep). During sleep, your body will produce serotonin to maintain your mood and all. However, you need to make sure, it's a good deep quality sleep.

Try caffeine nap! Drink coffee and take a power nap for 15 mins when you can. It also boost productivity, if you're like me who are into doing so many things at the same time.

And, during those depressed times, I get sleepy a lot. My psychologist said, it's the way my body cope with the situation I'm having, so my body can recover and go on.

I can't just sleep away like that of course, that's why it's getting worse and worse as I can't have much sleep. So now, yeah I'm recovering... slowly.


RELAYOUT YOUR ROOM
Continuing the previous bullet... and as I have told you that I believe in feng shui and all, I got the revelation that I really need to change the layout. So, within a night, I bought a new desk, cupboars and create another book corner.



This might be working if you're a girl or have a similar taste. The key point is to have the wider space in bright color. I don't know why... but I'm telling you that I don't like yellow and green, but here you go. It's about balance---that means, you would need colors you don't like to create balance with colors of your favorite. 





DO SOMETHING NEW, FIRST TIME IN YOUR LIFE
As much as I love challenges, but when my mood drops, it's not easy to be that positive to accept new things or push yourself doing something you never know before.

That leads me into thinking to learn how to swim! Another thing that leads me to swim was my doctor's suggestion that I shouldn't take any exercise due to my low back pain and past left arm fracture... but I can't swim... and I wanted to do exercise, at least 5K running but I wasn't allowed until I got into physiotherapy or swim.

During the time, I randomly take single classes, like tea classes, baking classes, flower arrangement, or online classes. Anything that fits my schedule and my budget.

After I regain control of my life, as I move to another work place, finally I can continue my long lost Counter-Terrorism Studies class!

And the rose gold is suddenly my favorite that boosts my mood!

I tried everything new... celebrating each of my new firsts in my life. When it's closer to the time I would start, I'd ask, "What am I doing here? I shouldn't have!" But I pushed myself... after going through it, no matter I like it or not, I love it. I love how I am exposed to new things.

And yeah, guessed, my shrink visit DID a good start for me.

Something new is also including... talking to strangers and their dogs and be friends with them after knowing it's safe to spend time with them further! Then you realize the world is indeed small.

Start small? Try watching movies in Netflix, new movies (coz I do have tendencies to keep watching movies I've watched 1000 times), and break your algorithm! I made a highlight on my Instagram about movie list that could expose you to something new. That just feels so great!


EXERCISE
I know I'm kinda lucky as I'm supported by the office to get new sportwear, gym membership and all. But I also tried to exercise daily at home, using my S-Health in Samsung Galaxy smartphone. They have program for you to try and it's managable. Totally cool, but some exercise program would need you to get some dumbells. Maybe you can replace it with water bottles?

I just told you that I'm not allowed to do exercise by doc. After tried the gentle ones, low to medium intensity, like Yoga, Pilates, Barre, and TRX Yoga. Logically, anything you exercise, your body will create endorphines which will stabilize your mood and overall body process.

I was in Ubud a few days ago. I stayed in an awesome secluded place, a total hidden gem among ricefields. The air was fresh enough for me to breathe all I can. I decided to bring my Yoga mat and workout clothes. No regret! I think would be great if you can travel, too. Alone.




EAT HEALTHY


Well, I love cooking!

However, I also start to think what I eat to gain balance. As mood swing can be caused by PMS and unbalance nutrition. This trick, at least, can reduce your sufferings.

For example, I reduce eating white rice or anything wheat and too flour-y. Less fried foods. Yet, for me, I still eat naughty, let's call it cheating, but that makes you happy. Just don't make it a habit, though. I'm not into something extreme like crazy... like I said, we need balance. So I'm calling peanut butter chocolate, fried noodles, and the gangs!

I start to eat veggies, too. Well this one also goes to TRYING SOMETHING NEW. Coz I never like veggies unless spinach rice with ginger. Even I eat banana now, even though only small portion. Mixing granola is new hobby.

Cooking nuisance is also a therapy.

That's the reason why I like listening to people cooking on YouTube (those videos where the host isn't talking too much).


Maybe these things aren't changing the fact that people harm you that deep. Maybe these things cannot fix how your brain processes the situation you're struggling in.

It's been ups and downs for me. But I've decided to reclaim myself and my life. Get myself on track. Learning the essence of 'keep moving'. Get myself in control.

All those cries in the night... those anger... that sadness.... those disappointments, might not go away just like that. But, at least, it keeps you going.

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