a2z: Juggling yourselves

April 2015’s Blogging A to Z:
Juggling yourselves

 

I’m not talking about juggling balls and flaming pins and shit.  I’m referring to tending to the various roles you play in your life.

Stephen Covey is awesome.  his most popular book is The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, and it’s awesome.  other powerful pieces by him include First Things FirstThe 8th Habit, and Principle Centered Leadership.  his material isn’t so much “self-help” books as “self-empowerment” books.  he teaches you how to be a more productive person and a better leader, rather than how to love yourself better or find peace.  he suggests that the latter will come with an improved management of your life; but that’s not the focus.

anyway, in the first books I mentioned, he presents a seven-step process in which you can create a guideline of sorts for your life.  in step two, you learn how to define and approach goals in an efficient manner.  one thing he stresses in this step is understanding your various roles in your life.

many people have since then created their own approach as to how to create said list of roles.  but almost of all of them agree: Self must be first.  so a set of roles may look like the following:

  • Self (spiritual, mental, physical, etc.)
  • Wife/Husband
  • Mother/Father
  • Family Member (sister/brother, daughter/son, niece, uncle, etc.)
  • Employee
  • Friend
  • Community Volunteer (troop leader, etc.)
  • Hobbyist (singer, artist, etc.)
  • And so on

something that I’ve been doing recently is reconsidering my personal Roles.  I used to place Volunteer and X_Sterotype above roles such as Lover or Friend.  and we all know that I’ve  always place Self at the bottom.

having Sean come stay with us for a few weeks helped me understand how it’s not a bad thing to be self-focused.  just as I differentiate between “child-like” (innocence, fun, purity) and “childish” (immature, greedy, impatient, petty), there’s “selfish” and “self-centered”.  I mean, you can assign whatever exact terms you want to them — for example, is a “fag” a cigarette or a homosexual to you? –, it’s the idea that matters.  Sean taught me that sometimes I have to focus on keeping myself afloat before I can even consider tending to others.

so that’s something I think I need to ponder on more — what my different Roles currently are, which I want to keep or are necessary, and what’s each of their importance to me.

 

Juggling yourselves

Advertisements

a2z: Identity

I spent more of yesterday than I should have trying to decide about what to write for “I”.

I was trying really hard not to be super-depressive with this post (especially since “F”, “G”, and “H” were all gloomy), but was was rather difficult.  the first few “I” words that came to mind were “incarceration”, “indecisiveness”, “ignorance”, “issues”, “injuries”, “illusions”, “inmate”, “illegal”, “insane”, and “immoral”.  I wasn’t not a fan of any of them, of course.

so then I was pondered about the good “I” words — “imagination”, “independence”, “interdependence”,  “ingenuity”, “intelligence”, “Impala”, “Illuminati”.  but yesterday, I din’t have the energy to give any of those illustrious topics (see what I did there?) the deserved justice in writing about them.  hell, I was even all geared up to do a post about my being an INTP — but I wasn’t even sure how true that was anymore.

then it hit me, and so here we go:

 

April 2015’s Blogging A to Z:
Identity

 

I’m not going into the philosophical concept of self, because that’s not with what I’m concerned.  I’m concerned about Identity of personality.

I used to have really bad insomnia (among other sleeping disorders).  I take medication now.  which means I sometimes can actually go to sleep within an hour of laying in bed; it also means that sometimes I can stay asleep for more than 45 minutes at a time.  but I also have a slight sleep phobia.  no really, I have a semi-irrational fear of sleeping.

well, I’m scared about waking, more accurately.  too often do I go to bed one person, and wake up someone else.

my bipolar, primarily when not medicated, is rapid-cycling.  which means in a set of days to even a mere few hours, my mood can drastically swing from one end of the spectrum to the other, with no obvious motivator.

in a study about the paradigms and perspective bipolar blokes had of themselves and the world, a conflict of self-identity was common:

The participants’ descriptions of themselves reflected self-definitions shaped by their mood and other aspects of their illness, leading to experiences of confusion. Mood was a defining characteristic of self with one participant describing himself in terms of different mood states.  […]  There was recognition that mood shifts lead to cognitive and behavioral changes which one participant experienced as: “Like I actually mentally change and think differently and act differently.” These different experiences of themselves resulted in a sense of confusion for the participants over who they really were. One participant described a struggle between mood and personality: “Like I actually don’t know who I am. There’s a few kind of core things, but it’s almost like my personality was grappling with my mood.”  Additionally, confusion arose for the participants in trying to differentiate themselves from their illness: “So, I’m not sure if that was the mania or if that was just me.”  [1]

I’m scared to go to sleep some nights, because I don’t know who I’ll be in the morning.  will I be James the Greatest, the loud boisterous manic lass who gets a lot of shit done?  or will I be a timid, depressive form of myself, hiding in the shadows and along the crevices of the walls hoping no one notices me so I can just disappear?  will I be bored because I’ve made no grand plans for the day ahead?  or will I be overwhelmed because I have a job and friends?

and how am I going to fuck it up?  will I be so manic that I get multiple speeding tickets and make promises I can’t keep?  or will I fail at my required tasks and get myself in line for another day of fussing at work in a week or two?

if I don’t go to sleep, it’s easier to know who I am.  I can kinda tell as I change in a given moment.  well, kinda.

maybe not.

maybe I’ll never really know who I’ll ever be.

ever…?

 

Identity

 

 

Sources:

1] Inder, ML, et al.  “‘I Actually Don’t Know Who I Am’: The Impact Of Bipolar Disorder On The Development Of Self”.  Psychiatry: Interpersonal & Biological Processes 71.2 (Jun. 1, 2008): 123-133.  CINAHL Plus with Full Text.  Web.  Apr. 22, 2015.

a2z: Ffff

 

I couldn’t do it; I couldn’t decide.  I started this entry several times, focusing on different words and concepts each time.  the letter “F” has a lot of personal meaning to me.  it’s been literally carved into my skin more times than I can count.  there is no mere single word I can choose.  (not even “fuck”, lol.)

so instead, we’re doing this….

 

April 2015’s Blogging A to Z:
Ffff

 

Feelings:  i am overwhelmed with these emotions and reactions that i cannot seem to control, do not seem to understand.
i feel it all. / numb to nothing, / i feel it all. / standing in my own, / cut and bleeding, / i feel it all.

Freedom:  this often causes me to feel like i’m trapped in my life, in this shell and these expectations.
some days aren’t yours at all. / they come and go / as if they’re someone else’s days. / they come and leave you behind someone else’s face, / and it’s harsher than yours / and colder than yours.

Flee:  i want to escape the barriers of this existence, the pain inside my mind.
i was happy in the haze of a drunken hour. / but heaven knows I’m miserable now. / “you’ve been the house too long,” she said. / and i naturally fled.

Forget:  i want to let go of my past and start anew.
sometimes i remember the darkness of my past / bringing back these memories i wish i didn’t have. / sometimes i think of letting go and never looking back, / and never moving forward so there’d never be a past.

Force:  i want to be stronger and move on, to improve and change.
reckon i’ll close the door, / pull down the curtains, stay close to the floor. / mercy is for the weak; we do not train to be merciful here. / mercy is everything I fear; we do not train to see His mercy here.

Future:  but i’m terrified of what lies ahead.
in the wastelands of today — / when tomorrow disappears, / when the Future slips away, / and your hope turns into fear / in the wastelands of today.

Fear:  this apprehension and anxiety controls so much of me, so many of my decisions; and it keeps me trapped.
time is shorter than you know. / i know the light is blinding to the naked eye. / so why don’t you take steps away from being alone? / i swear, it’s not too late for you. / so come on down, / what are you so afraid of?

Failure:  because I know i’ll just fuck something up again; i know that i’ll never be “good enough” for myself.
and i will be someone i admire. / and it’s funny how i imagined / that i could be that person now. / but that’s not what i want; / but that’s what i wanted. / and i’d be giving up somehow. / how strange to see / that i don’t wanna be the person that i want to be.

Fake:  but I try anyway; i pretend, and most people buy it.
but you’ll fight, and you’ll make it through. / you’ll Fake it if you have to. / and you’ll show up for work with a smile. / you’ll be better, you’ll be smarter, / and more grown up, and a better daughter.

Family:  even the ones i love the most believe the lies that i’m okay and i’ll make it out alright.
i cannot / run from my Family. / they’re hiding inside me, / corpses on ice. / come in if you’d like. / but just don’t tell my Family; / they’d never Forgive me. / they say that I’m crazy.

Following instructions:  that i’m a good girl, that i am responsible, and that i do as i should.
but lately you’ve been painting on the walls / with a black fire you lit, / and it’s a lie, / and i hate it. / but still you think it’s you, / so you keep it.

Fuck-up:  but none of these facades will change what i truely am.
but i’m / nothing special. I’m / not unique. I / have many secrets, and I / eat the weak.

Falling:  and i know i will continue on in this downward spiral of self-hate and disappoint.
you are the wind, the flood, and the flame. / nothing here can get in your way. / you’ve come too far to care what they say. / now you’re the only thing in your way.

Fly away:  until i finally just quit…
the pills, the windowsill, / razor blade, great escape. / so lonely, the feeling, / the slipping, the bleeding. / good lord, where are you found?

 

Ffff