Much Needed Closure

Receiving a no rather than a maybe is always preferred in my book. This comes down to almost anything, minus maybe a few small things. I work in a competitive market & hear the word “no” quite often, so it doesn’t bother me. If anything, it frees me up to do other things, things actually worth my time. Tasks with potential, or in this case, working on myself.

You lot know I’ve struggled immensely over the past few months with my depression & anxiety. All of that stems from my past, but it was triggered most recently by a breakup. Breakups are never easy – this is the second one I’ve been on the wrong side of, & to be quite honest, I’m terrible at reacclimating my life once a split happens. It’s something I need to work on, & it all starts with that one saying you hear from EVERYBODY: You need to love yourself.

Well, I’ve had issues loving myself for about 15 years now. Some days I adore myself, most days I can’t stand the sight of myself. Now, this is just over the past… seven months, so hopefully I manage to swap those percentages down the road. I mean, that’s why I started this blog – an outlet, somewhere I can place my thoughts, & as I write, I work through my issues. It’s really been a great tool for me, & if you’re just a reader I highly advise you to start your own blog for an outlet. It’s much better than a personal journal.

Closure. I finally received it from my ex. I was told I never stand a chance of getting back with her due to my mental health & how I treat people close to me when I’m struggling. I can’t blame her. She’s right. I treated her like shit. My depression, my anxiety, allowing those two things to control me really controlled everything else I did. Meaning I didn’t have control. I still don’t have control, but I’m getting better. And now with closure, I can start to move on.

Yesterday I read something I thought to be extremely helpful in times like these. “It’s OK to look in the past, just don’t stare.” I can’t remember where I read this, I think Reddit, but it really makes a lot of sense. Now, with closure, I can stare a bit less. I know that moment is gone for me & it’s time to focus on the present & a bit on the future.

Closure is a good thing, even if it’s a bit harsh. False hope is something I wouldn’t wish on anyone, & if you have the opportunity to get some closure, even if you think it’s not the answer you want to hear, do it. It will allow you to move forward.

I wish you well. Try not to beat the shit out of yourself.

I Should Probably Write

Hey, everybody. Hope you’ve been well. Can’t remember the last time I put something up on here, so here comes another word vomit.

I’m selling my house soon. I was extremely excited about it, but now it feels like an overwhelming task. I can’t even keep a sleep schedule right now, how am I supposed to manage selling & buying a new house? My mental capacity is so very low right now, but what must be done must be done.

I also have a major test coming up in the month of November. Y’know, one of those tests that tells you if you’re smart enough to be in an MBA program. I’m a bit worried here, too, because… well, my mental capacity is extremely low. I’ve mentioned that before, haven’t I? I’m not poor at school, but I am experiencing a motivation drought. Oh how I long for the times where I’ve felt extremely positive, but those times come & go so quickly.

Managing stress is one of the most important skills you can learn throughout life. I’ve done a decent job at staying sane during these moments in my life through not expecting the world out of myself. Telling yourself that you will get this done, along with 100 other miscellaneous items, can be tasks too daunting for individuals like you & I to take head on. That’s why you must cut yourself some slack. Maybe you got 50 of those tasks done. That’s a win.

Don’t discount the work you’ve put in to get here. The reason you’re stressed is because so many things in your life are changing & guess what, most likely you’re the one creating that change. That’s a good thing. You can’t have a journey without multiple stops. Nothing is seamless.

What the fuck am I writing?

Anyway, just keep after it. Day after day, things will hopefully slow down for you like I hope they slow down for me. Who knows, maybe things will pick up even more – but I’m positioning myself to handle that. I hope you are, too.

I wish you well. Try not to beat the shit out of yourself.

It Gets Better

Example: Me.

Now look, I’m not 100% better. If you’ve followed my blog posts since August when I started this outlet, you know I’ve been struggling with many things in my life. Mainly passion, loneliness, & overall depression. Anxiety gets tossed in there, too. Can’t stand that shit.

Over the past couple of days I’ve actually seen progress. Is it from my meds? Who knows. Is it from my therapy? Again, who knows. Who really cares? If we try to find answers for everything in our lives, we’ll go absolutely mad. Whatever I’m doing is working. I’m not close to my normal self yet, but I’m making progress most days.

Weekends still suck. Way too much time on my hands on the weekends. Monday through Friday? Doing real well.

Work is going well although I am interviewing for other companies (keep all doors open), I’m putting my house up for sale at the end of this month, & my future is quite unknown. I’m not scared about that any longer. I’m excited for it. I haven’t felt excitement in months, so I’m acclimating to it the best I possibly can. I must make sure not to get overexcited, because I’m sure something will slap me in the face over the next few days. You’re quite dense if you think everything is going to go smoothly because all of a sudden you feel like somewhat like yourself again. At least that’s what I think. If you don’t agree, you are a much more positive person & I can’t fault for you that. No one can. Keep that positivity. It’s hard to get back. (Again, example: Me.)

It feels good to genuinely laugh again. To go on dates & actually want to go on dates. To hit the heavy bag with purpose. To golf with my father. To walk my dogs. To cooking some of my favorite meals. To going to a dog birthday party this weekend.

It’s starting to feel like I’m turning a corner. Let’s hope it lasts, eh?

I wish you well. Try not to beat the shit out of yourself.

Figuring Out Passion

One thing I struggle with on a daily basis, moreso over the past four months since my break-up & most of my life shifted in a different direction, is what I’m passionate about nowadays.

In the midst of the pandemic, my normal passion, boxing, is put to a halt. Coaching children in the art of boxing isn’t something I can just up & go do right now. That’s left me a bit stranded. I have, however, volunteered more of my time to another volunteer opportunity & I do hope the work with that picks up.

Passion, it’s an odd thing really. One day you have it, one day you don’t. It’s OK though, sometimes feeling passionate isn’t natural. For me, it’s understandable that it’s difficult to feel passionate about anything right now. My life, along with all of your lives, shifted in a crazy way. Those who used to spend their evenings with friends, having drinks, etc. are all now… somewhat stuck in their homes if they’re listening to social distancing guidelines. I sometimes fail at that, but if I didn’t go out in public (gym, grocery store, sometimes the bar for a soccer match), I would go ABSOLUTELY INSANE.

So let’s get back to passion. If you read my last post, you know that I also struggle with focus. That’s definitely on display here.

I’m almost 30. I don’t know if I’ve mentioned that in the past, but that eats at me. Not because I think I’m old, but due to the fact that I don’t feel passionate about a single thing in life right now. At the age of 30, or just a bit younger, I thought I’d have it all figured out by now. Luckily I acknowledge that’s a myth & no one really has anything figured out in life. We’re all just winging it. Yes, you may have a plan, but there’s a good chance that doesn’t go exactly your way. I speak from experience, it definitely doesn’t go 100% our way when we have a plan.

Holy shit, I’ve somehow managed to get away from the topic at hand again. PULL IT TOGETHER, BLOGGER.

Passion. I don’t have it right now. I wish I did. I need something to keep me going. I am not dangerous when I’m bored, but holy shit do I treat my body like hell when I have nothing to do. Nothing to really look forward to.

It’s important to note that I most likely have plenty to look forward to, but that’s the funny thing about depression & anxiety & whatever else you could be dealing with – those little demons don’t give you much help in feeling good about yourself. They don’t help you find a passion, pursue a passion, or stick to a passion. They’re barriers. And maybe before I worry myself with what I’m passionate about, I should really look at why I’m not happy with myself.

Welp, don’t know if I said anything of value in this post. I hope you’re passionate about something in life, even if it’s something you consider small. It’s so very important to be excited about something in life. When you aren’t, everything just repeats. It’s all the same. Every day is the damn same.

Find a passion. Stick with it. Follow that shit. And if you have any outside the box ideas for a passion, LET ME KNOW. I am in dire need of a new passion. Hell, maybe even a passion project.

I wish you well. Try not to beat the shit out of yourself.

Scattered Focus

As we continue down this path of getting to know me, I thought it might be time to address what I like to call “scattered focus”. It’s a pretty self-explanatory term, but I’ll explain it. Scattered focus, for me, is very simple: I have intervals where I’m focused, like during the work day or in my workouts. These are moments in the day where my mind is completely present, mostly aware, & I don’t have 14 random thoughts racing through my mind.

I love these moments. My moments of focus really drive me to the next day majority of the time. One of my all-time favorite therapists that I’ve had & it’s really sad typing that out… hahahahahaha. Sorry, “my all-time favorite therapist” like it’s a Greatest Hits album. Jesus, this life.

Anyway, one of the only therapists I had great success with told me to focus on the small happinesses in life. Focus on the little things. I think I’ve went over this with you lot before, but I want to really stress it here. My moments of focus are also moments of small happiness, sometimes BIG happiness. It’s important to note that stuff, you know. Important to note the wins you have throughout the day, no matter how sparse they are.

Even within my writing you can tell that my focus isn’t always there. I don’t know what I typed two paragraphs ago & there’s a good chance half of this shit doesn’t connect with the other half. So what? I’m sure there’s some good stuff in here. Not everything has to be a winner. I started this blog with no focus & from writing I’m able to grasp some focus. That’s pretty cool.

What am I talking about again? Focus. Focus. Focus. Let’s look at the opposite side of that. What’s that look like, man? It isn’t pretty.

Have you ever looked down at a page… eh, let’s just use an example. My GRE prep book. Holy shit. I know I’m not stupid, but when I look down at those pages, my mind scatters. It has no clue what to pick up on or where to start. Did I used to be like that? No, I used to be just fine in school if I applied myself/went to class. Now? I want to be in class, I want to learn, yet something in my mind is saying I better not. I’ll embarrass myself if I take that test. I’ll never get an MBA. Will you even make it to the next day? What’s the point?

Yeah, trying having that little bugger roaming your mind all willy-nilly when you’re trying to learn how to do fucking fractions again. HA. God, it sucks.

And no, I will not take any damn Adderall or Ritalin. Noooooo way. That shit turns me into the Grinch. I am looking for natural solutions to solidify my focus. If you have any tips, please share!

I wish you well. Try not to beat the shit out of yourself.

Stopgaps

Every night I go to bed with similar & quite stressful thoughts: Why do I keep filling my day with meaningless tasks? What void am I trying to fill & why am I doing such a terrible job at it? Will I be better tomorrow? I’ll be better tomorrow. Tomorrow I’ll do x differently & y so much better.

That last part doesn’t usually end up happening. My days remain relatively consistent – couch lounging, menial house & gardening work, & a mix of Tinder & cannabis. Let’s just say this mixture isn’t your best bet to get out of a slump – at least a mental health “slump” or whatever you want to call it.

Tinder is where I really go wrong. In the past week I’ve had four encounters with four different women, all usually followed by a heap of regret outside of my encounter in Maine. That person is now a friend.

You’re probably asking yourself why I keep swiping left & right. I don’t have a good answer for you. I mean, part of me wants to say that sex is an easy fix that creates some type of happiness/joy, but it doesn’t last. I’m not looking to create anything long-lasting. I promise I tend to be a nice guy when it comes to women which generates even more regret when I blow someone off or tell them I’m just not interested anymore.

One of the many stopgaps.

Let’s discuss my use of cannabis. I’m not a crazy heavy user, but when things get tough, I tend to smoke some cannabis & lie down. It helps with my anxiety, but it doesn’t help me long term. Where’s the balance in that? Which one is more important than the other? More questions I constantly ask myself each & every day.

Could I quit cannabis? I don’t think so – at least not right now. When I traveled to Maine, I didn’t have an itch for it, but when I’m in my own home… well, it just feels too natural & sometimes my anxiety climbs too high.

Another stopgap.

My menial tasks, my lounging. These are tasks that I do to just pass time. You have no idea how quickly I want days to end. I want to wake up & it be time for bed already. Sadly that doesn’t happen, but I strive for that right now. If I can spend less than six hours a day conscious, I call that a win. Luckily it’s not a big enough of a win for me to go back to my destructive opiate addiction (almost 10 years clean! See, there’s a positive in here).

Too many stopgaps & nonsensical tasks. Hell, I have to take the GRE to get into an MBA program in less than a month & I haven’t studied a page. I’m fucked, I know it, but I’m having trouble self-starting. Outside of work, I can’t do much for myself at this point. Luckily I’ve been able to get into the gym recently & have some decent workouts, but the hours before & after that gym visit are mostly shitty.

Holy fuck, this post sucks. Can I say anything positive at all?

Yeah, I can say a few positive things. I mean, if I didn’t, my best friend would holler at me for not listening to his #1 rule when it comes to venting/bitching/whatever this is. So let’s do it, let’s get into the positives.

My house is almost ready to sell. My dogs are healthy. I’m physically healthy. My parents are celebrating their 37th! wedding anniversary in the mountains as I type this post. My garden is still going strong. I do have something to look forward to – the test for the MBA program – I just need to get to studying at some point. I have a final interview on Monday & should receive two job offers over the next week. Anything else? Hey, I have a fully stocked fridge. That’s a huge win, too.

Life isn’t the absolute worst right now. Really, it isn’t. However, I need to figure out how to get rid of my stopgaps & dive into some passions. The problem is I don’t really feel like I have too much passion for any passions right now, if that makes sense. I’m hoping that changes, & until then I’ll keep using the stopgaps proven to get me by.

I wish you well. Try not to beat the shit out of yourself.

Today Feels Different

I don’t want to get ahead of myself, but I feel pretty damn good today. It feels like a new day with actual opportunities in front of me. It feels like a new week with plenty planned out to keep me busy. I feel refreshed, I’m back to eating, & I’ve had a couple good gym sessions in the past couple of days.

Again, I don’t want to get ahead of myself, but I feel pretty damn good.

What’s brought me to this point? Probably a mixed bag of my travels, my friends, my dogs, & my general awareness of my mental health. The normal stuff. It feels good… for a lack of better term… to feel normal again. The bags are gone from under my eyes, my smile is back, & I’m back to singing in Zoom meetings.

Again, can’t get ahead of myself.

Today I get to see one of my best friend’s newborn child for the very first time in person. Am I pumped? Hell yes I’m pumped. Oh, there’s a great soccer match on later today, too. Am I pumped for that? Hell yes I’m pumped. Would I have been pumped last week, or hell, even two days ago? No, but things change. Sometimes drastically.

Can’t get ahead of myself.

Ah, screw it. I’m happy today. That’s what matters. Live in the damn moment, will ya?!

I wish you well. Try not to beat the shit out of yourself.

Reflections: Flying Home

I’m sitting in a Burger King right now. Checked in for my flight, head home here in just an hour or so.

What has this trip meant to me?

I originally embarked on this trip filled with zero expectations. I think I managed that. I never set anything in stone on things I had to get done, places I had to see, or people I had to meet. I did a good job on that.

However, I don’t know why I feel like I didn’t do enough this trip. It could have something to do with my crippling depression & constant need for naps throughout the trip to pass some time. But when I think about those naps, they managed to get me through some really tough mental moments.

I leave Maine knowing I saw what I could see. I ventured out as much as I could. I did give it my all. Now I head home without an ounce of knowledge on what to do next, & that’s a scary thought.

My parents will be there for me. My dogs will be there for me.

What did I learn about myself this trip? I still have a knack for meeting strangers and befriending them. That’s good to know. Maybe when I get back home it’ll be time to head back out to bars, to head back out & just talk with people. Maybe I’ll make some new friends. Maybe I’ll rekindle friendships with those that I’ve put aside recently due to my mental state.

This was a positive trip. I maybe cried a bit more than I’d care to admit, but I did something I didn’t think was possible for me. Hell, I thought I might drive off a cliff when I was heading up & down Cadillac Mountain, I was that poor off. But I didn’t. I’m still here. Fighting. Living somewhat, but mostly fighting.

I can’t wait to see my dogs. I can’t wait to be in my own bed. I am excited for what’s next. I’m proud to feel that way.

I wish you well. Try not to beat the shit out of yourself.

It’s Been a Minute

Hey, everyone!

It’s been a while. I do apologize. I’ve been in the shit.

However! Tomorrow I head off to Maine for eight days. Very, very pumped about it. It’s time for a trip filled with restoration & almost no expectations. It’s really freeing to have something like this booked. A week on the river, right by the ocean, just a couple kayaks & me. I have a rental car to skedaddle anywhere I want in the state & who knows where that will be!

So let’s talk about the shit. I haven’t posted in a week, why? Well, like I said, I’ve been in the shit. Self-motivation? Big fat NOPE. Self-care? Big fat NOPE. Crying? Big fat YES. But things change. They do. This week had shitty weather anyway, maybe it’s not even my fault. One thing I do know: Who cares! We have another day to live tomorrow, another breath to take right now, & another smile to unearth sometime soon, hopefully.

What am I going to do on my trip? Disconnect. I will have to work, but I’ve told my team that I will be delegating quite a bit of my workload next week. They understand. It’s nice to have coworkers that understand (they won’t understand unless you’re honest about your situation – try that sometime). I have a list concocted by a work acquaintance of the best street to shop in a certain city in Maine, the best trails, the best foods, the best everything. Very excited to use that resource as somewhat of a compass throughout the trip. Props to the person that cared enough to share the list, right? Some good people out there.

Most importantly, I’m going to be doing nothing. Not nothing in the sense of just sitting on the couch like I’ve been doing this week, but nothing in the sense of expectations. Sometimes those pesky expectations weigh you down, drive guilt into your cranium, and make that heart puff up to the point of uncomfortability. I’m getting away from that next week & I cannot wait.

Will I write next week? Most likely. I tend to write when I do quite a bit of thinking, & I believe I’ll be doing quite a bit of thinking. I mean, it is just me & some kayaks.

I’m bringing four to five books with me, all untouched. If I don’t like the first few pages, bang!, I’m discarding the book. Well, maybe, they’re quite expensive. My point is: I’m doing what I want next week. Nothing more, nothing less, & that feels AMAZING to type out.

I hope you lot had a fantastic week. I hope to be on here more, writing my own shit & reading some of your great posts.

I wish you well. Try not to beat the shit out of yourself.

Racing Thoughts

Sometimes the mind just won’t shut up.

Majority of the time, time moves slow.

When you add up those two concretes in my life, things can get a bit dodgy. Half of the day I spend inside my own head – hell, probably more than half of the day. If someone’s not communicating with me or if I’m not neck deep in a show, book, or video game, there’s a good chance my mind is toying with itself. Also, there’s a good chance I’ve had 2,949,820,439 thoughts within a span of five minutes – mostly all bad, some tragic.

Oh! But it must be good to be such an active, critical thinker, right? WRONG. I don’t think about the world’s problems during these times, hell, sometimes I can’t even focus on what’s going on around me. My EEG results proved that this week. Boy, I do not recommend getting that exam done if you’re experiencing depression and/or anxiety in clumps. It just adds to the clump.

I have been somewhat eating recently, which is nice. I mean, mainly it’s a couple yogurt cups, a few protein shakes, and a lot of bananas – but hey, it’s something, & I’m up four pounds. I’m sure I’ll lose it again, but I just have to keep pushing.

What do you guys do when time seems to recycle itself? I feel like I’ve woken up in the exact same moment on the exact same day for the past three to four days. It isn’t fun. It’s quite the opposite. My psych this week told me, “You aren’t crazy, at least.” MAN, SHUT UP. I’m growing tired of psych appointments, I’ll be honest. They leave me in a poor mood & it’s starting to feel like a prescription factory.

Anyway, I don’t have much to write today. I just noticed that I haven’t written in a bit & it felt wrong to leave you lot stranded. I know a few of you read my stuff as soon as it comes out & I appreciate you for that. This blog is quite helpful along this journey.

BUT we’re not done! I have to finish with a positive. Maybe a couple today? Who knows, feelin’ wild.

Positive #1: I planted all of the bushes needed to make my house sellable. Sellable? Yeah, sellable. I think.

Positive #2: I’m doing well at work & other companies are noticing. It’s nice to see that others see more out of me than I currently do myself. Maybe they’re onto something.

I wish you well. Try not to beat the shit out of yourself.