I haven’t written anything in almost a month. Part of it has been time commitments, part of it has been actively, albeit subconsciously, putting everything and everyone else first. The old guilt that I had started to get a handle on around my kids – am I doing enough/too much/not enough etc etc – has been rearing its head again in a big way, and when that takes hold it’s all too easy for everything else to get thrown out of perspective.
I talked about this with Therapist 2.0 on Monday, and she noticed something. There are 3 flows of compassion:
- self to self
- self to other
- other to self
The three of these ideally will be in balance, and that helps keep us well. What I have going on however, is very different. She had me break it down into percentages – my self to other is way too much, 90%, other to self is at 5%, and self to self is also at 5%. This in turn has a knock on effect on my emotion regulation systems (threat, drive and soothing). Drive is firmly on control, pushing me to keep doing and doing and doing. My capacity to say no is severely compromised. But the problem with being in drive mode all the time is that I get really tired. Drive wants me to keep doing. Soothing pipes up a little and wants me to stop, but then threat is activated because if I stop, then x, y and z won’t get done, and that’s pretty much the end of time (is how my threat system is seeing it).
Am I making any sense at all? It’s actually helping so, so much to write all this down, because it’s making me see it so much more clearly. It’s really noble to put everyone else first all the time, but it’s also a touch martyr-ish. And, ultimately, unsustainable. I’ve seen this time and again the last few weeks. Something grabs my attention, I focus on it, I give it all my energy, I make it happen and I feel really good. But, the feeling good wears off and I’m left with feeling shattered. When I’m shattered, my yoga stops. My breathing gets messed up. I’m way, way less inclined to look after myself, get myself to bed early etc etc. I appreciate the irony in that one – I’m tired, but I stay up late – it’s because I’m not allowing myself time during the day to just be, so the only time I can do it is at night, when everyone is in bed. But then I miss out on sleep………and round and round in circles I go.
It’s amazing how much of this I had forgotten in just the last few weeks of not writing. My anxiety has definitely been up. Monday was really tough going, and this morning not a whole lot better. But, a visit with my psychiatrist, an honest review of the last few weeks, a continued reducing of one of my meds and making the time to sit down and write this post is after making a huge difference. I feel better. Thanks for listening 🙂