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Topic: A Common Story?

  1. smallwolf
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    smallwolf avatar
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    12 December 2017

    I was reading a couple of the other introductions earlier and could see a lot of myself in their stories. I am the generally the one that helps everyone, the one that has all the answers, the one that puts on a brave face, when underneath it is all turning to crap.

    My anxiety ... future telling, finding problems that don't exist and my mind goes over and over these again and again. I know these thoughts are irrational and emotive, and yet these thought don't leave my head. I know that I am loved by family, but I just don't feel it or don't deserve it. Yin and Yang... one part of my head thinks irrationally and the other (logical side) know that it should not be the case.

    With my psychologist started a happy memories session yesterday. Going through it I ended in tears. As helpful as it was, it seemed like one of the few memories in my life that seems to get overtaken by every other problem in a sea of black and those happy memories fade away. (I work from home as a software developer and have always been logical, even if a glass half empty. There is little/no thanks in the work I do anymore.)

    I am tired and despondent in feeling this way. I hope that I am not complaining too much. Just want to know that I am not alone.


    9 people found this helpful
  2. demonblaster
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    12 December 2017 in reply to smallwolf

    Welcome wolf

    I aim to return & talk more just not sure when

    Here you're not alone

    Thanks for posting

    Bbl ☺

  3. TogALot
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    12 December 2017 in reply to smallwolf

    Hi small wolf. It took me a while to post on these forums, but after posting the other night for the first time I did feel a bit better, even for just a short while. Reading peoples stories that echo my own situation is almost a relief, that I am not alone, that there are others that will understand exactly how I feel.

    Like you, I see a lot of my story in others and I am sure now that reading so many similar stories and knowing others feel the same will help and maybe we can all support each other as we fight a common battle.

    5 people found this helpful
  4. Bethie
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    12 December 2017 in reply to smallwolf

    Welcome smallwolf

    Your not alone in any of this. I feel your pain. One of my biggest hurdles with anxity and depression is projecting into the future.

    If it helps a happy memory can be your on here now and communicating how and what you feel😊😊 that's a positive.

    Staying in the now is easier said than done. Something I personally do is close my eyes, put my hand on my heart and just focus on the sound of it. Might sound strange but it lets me know things are ok.

    Please keep checking in. I'm only New here but people who have been on here for ages can help with advice probably more.

    Your not alone...you've taken a huge positive step by being here. A journey of a thousand miles starts with 1 step

    3 people found this helpful
  5. demonblaster
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    12 December 2017 in reply to smallwolf

    Wolf Bethie & togs hey welcome, think we've met Bethie here, very good posts both of you btw

    Wolf I too have less now but what the ? Thoughts of scenarios in the future, I think it branches off depression & irrational as you said so they're rubbish thoughts, nothing that can be addressed so Im starting to learn to let them slide through & dismiss as nah just trying to pull me down, not having that.

    Other thoughts if we can change or learn from when we're strong enough then hopefully we can work through, & put them to bed.

    Good you have logic working for you, by focus & listening to those moreso can aid in pulling strength back up.

    Depression buries our strength but I believe its not gone. Another way of bringing it back is to continue thinking of those good memories, although you said fading they'd still be there i hope, everytime you do it blocks another negative thought. Any break from the downs lessons the habit causing the constant downs.

    Glad you found the happy memories helped & tears are a release of emotion so exhausting as it is some stress is getting out

    Good on you posting & opening up, as you can see here's a great safe caring community people wanting to be there for eachother.

    Please when you're ready feel free to continue

    Tc all ☺

    1 person found this helpful
  6. smallwolf
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    smallwolf avatar
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    13 December 2017 in reply to demonblaster

    Thank you for those replies. Here is why I should be happy... a loving wife, 2 kids, cat, a job, house. But I feel detached from everything... one occasion when I was walking up the road near my house and there was a fleeting moment of happiness. And I then wondered why I was happy and the feeling was foreign. Did I deserve to be happy? Logically YES, but my heart says otherwise...

    In one session I went through the cognitive distortions, and pretty much ticked them all! The problem I face regarding the negative thoughts vs the logical mind is that the negative thoughts are winning, and my logical side says to snap out of it. the other consequences are that I don't feel as productive as I "used to be", and times when I draw a total blank as to what I was/should be doing. And if you are also self-critical introvert, the downward spiral begins.

    I work from home as a software developer. People send me their problems when all other avenues have failed. And typically at this stage the customer might also be irate. So I don't really have anyone to talk through issues and problems with. I get to ruminate on everything that sucks and cannot resolve in the timerframe. I just shuffle from one problem to the next. The happy memories (at least in my head) then float/fade away like leaves in the wind. And successes get taken by the next problem. (While writing this I searched for happy memory examples and now in hindsight I could find some. An example, I am also studying BTh and in Greek/Hebrew I got a 7. That should be a happy memory. At the time I also fixated on the mistakes I made in either the exam or papers (written assessments).

    I would like to stop beating myself up but its very difficult.

    It is hard to recognise happy memories when you feel down.


    2 people found this helpful
  7. Croix
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    13 December 2017 in reply to smallwolf

    Dear Smallwolf~

    Your talk of Happy Memories sounded familiar.

    I have found when down that reading other peoples happy memories or writing down one of mine can help to lift the mood.

    This sounds all very well, and is actually more difficult than it sounds, you did say "It is hard to recognize happy memories when you feel down" which is very true, however if you can it is well worth it.

    I have a thread:

    Forums / Staying well / Store Your Happy Memories Here:

    Which attempts to do just that. People skim though it reading anything that catches their fancy, or write down a memory of their own that is pleasing to oneself and others too. It makes a change from the problems people have and seems quite popular.

    Thinking of a memory can be very hard as when the mind is preoccupied by anxiety and depression, in fact it can appear that there are none.

    To get the ball rolling you may be reminded by something someone else wrote. I've recently been reminded of an incident with a wallaby by a post in that thread, and was able to write it down, even though before I'd not thought of it for years.

    The other way is to see what a random word brings up when you reflect on it. Perhaps try "Commodore"?

    I actually find the writing is the most therapeutic aspect for me. By the time I've put the words how I like my attention has often drifted from the anxiety it was preoccupied with.

    I hope this can help

    Croix

    4 people found this helpful
  8. demonblaster
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    14 December 2017 in reply to smallwolf
    Hey Wolf & all

    Replied earlier, post not through yet

    Hope today's a bit lighter for you
  9. smallwolf
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    14 December 2017 in reply to demonblaster

    Lighter ... Sort Of.... I still have sleepless nights, and the chest remain tight. Was going to "there is still time in the day for it go downhill" but I have remain positive.

    On holidays tomorrow and I have found some happy memories that I have written down. They are only triggers, but happy memories none the less.

    I realise there are up to be up and down hours and days. The thing that irritates me the most are the extremes. I can be OK, and then (example only) I get an email that throws me a curve ball, and that can wreak the remainder of the day for me.

    My toolkit is growing... I have apps on my phone, REBT, and now happy memories. I also joined (?) "the mighty" on FB and that page and this site become a good outlet for me.

    I am a work in progress... have to keep telling myself that.

    5 people found this helpful
  10. demonblaster
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    15 December 2017 in reply to smallwolf

    Good on you, your positive attitude Wolf "work in progress" & holding onto a positive mindset is really helpful

    Sleep's so important for us, carries & creates more tension from stress.

    Sorry scanned through previous posts do you excercise which can help with stress release & sleep.

    You're really doing well working at getting through this ? REBT .. ? breathing techniques

    Tc

  11. RadDad75
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    15 December 2017 in reply to smallwolf

    Hi smallwolf,

    Strength in numbers. Your turn to be helped. Vent away and get ready for helpful posts :)

    4 people found this helpful
  12. Doolhof
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    15 December 2017 in reply to RadDad75

    Hi Everyone,

    Smallwolf mentioned a toolkit, it certainly does help to have a few tools and strategies at hand for those tough days.

    I don't know about you, some days I feel like I need to get the jumper leads out just to get me out of bed. Ha. Ha.

    Before I get out of bed some mornings, I think about the positive things I can do that day to help me feel better about myself and my life.

    Those negative thoughts can be pesky, would be great if we could just give them the flick. My psychologists says to try and turn the unhelpful thoughts into helpful ones and do something meaningful to provide myself with a sense of achievement.

    Oh yer, I like Croix's Store Your Happy Memories Thread. If you have had a look already, check it out and add something if you like.

    Cheers from Dools

    2 people found this helpful
  13. smallwolf
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    16 December 2017 in reply to demonblaster

    Exercise... Not as much as I probably should.

    Sleep... Last night was ok, but ok but on holidays. Otherwise I will wake between 1 and 2 and will stay awake for the next few hours before cat wakes me again at 4am for feeding. So sleep is broken. I get out of bed in the morning cause I have to, but irritable and grumpy and never happy, worrying about the next issue in my head. Email cause me grief panic. Lack of email makes me think they don't want to stress me out. Double whammy. Things easily stress me these days. Too easily.

    So I need a toolkit to help me get through the days. And I get some comfort from the stories on the mighty FB page. I thought I was making it all up...til I went to doctor.

    Funny thing was... I also found out that my father was on anti depressants and doc said these thing can be hereditary.

    The emptiness remains, something missing that I am searching for. And (as a Christian) I find myself asking why God?

    Sorry. Just venting again with random thoughts

    1 person found this helpful
  14. smallwolf
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    16 December 2017 in reply to demonblaster
    Breathing techniques are a bit hit and miss at the moment. Psych said requires practice and may not get it immediately and that is also frustrating. So at the moment I rely on guided meditation. But there will come a time ? when I will have to confront the demons in my mind through meditation rather than running from them.
    1 person found this helpful
  15. smallwolf
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    16 December 2017 in reply to demonblaster

    REBT... Again a hit and miss. Have issues reframing the disorder or negative thoughts. And even when I do, I have problems believing in the new thought or resolution.

    Baby steps. At least that is what I tell myself. That is the logical part of me. Just. Need to convince the rest of me about that.

    1 person found this helpful
  16. Frantic1
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    17 December 2017
    Smallwolf you are definitely not alone. I can totally relate to feeling tired and despondent. It is a constant struggle to push away the irrational and negative thoughts and find myself exhausted most of the time. Even though we tell ourselves that what we are thinking is irrational you are right, we have to believe it. One day at a time.
    1 person found this helpful
  17. demonblaster
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    17 December 2017 in reply to smallwolf

    Hey all

    Wolf what's REBT is it . . Breathing techniques?

    I'll add to acronym thread

    Caught up reading bbl ☺

  18. azarrah
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    17 December 2017 in reply to smallwolf

    Can I just say, Small Wolf, you write absolutely beautifully. I can't explain what your writing evokes exactly,but you have a real gift. Perhaps because you have articulated so wonderfully that feeling which I sometimes have, but can't really express. I suppose it's a sort of melancholy, questioning emptiness. Thank you for that, and please keep on checking in.

    3 people found this helpful
  19. smallwolf
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    17 December 2017 in reply to demonblaster

    REBT is rational emotive behaviour therapy. I don't have a sheet with me, but I can give an example.

    Firstly there is a trigger. An email for example. That gives me a racing heart, and thinking the worst without knowing contents of email. There are physical and emotive consequences.

    You then have to recognise the cognitive disorders. Again for me that would be future telling etc. These thoughts have to be reframed in order to create a new behaviour. For the email example a response might be to breathe and remember that you don't know the contents of email before reading.

    There's stacks of stuff on Google on the topic.

    3 people found this helpful
  20. demonblaster
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    19 December 2017 in reply to smallwolf

    Thx wolf so is that anxiety?

    Yes I think emotional control is the way to go, our emotions are so powerful & when we slide into one directional mode thinking the habit is hard to break but think with persistence definately doable

    Easier to deal if we know whats pulling us down before we can look at fixes which is where you're at

    So emotive meaning emotional response?

    Well explained btw ☺

  21. smallwolf
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    19 December 2017 in reply to demonblaster
    REBT is related to or is a form of CBT (cognitive behavioral therapy) as a means of coping with anxiety in dealing with the negative thoughts, such as feelings of failure, being a loser, seeing the worst possible outcome as what is going to happen, etc.
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  22. smallwolf
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    19 December 2017 in reply to demonblaster

    It is also used in therapy for depression.

    Outside of the apps my psych. felt that a combination of CBT and mindfulness was best for me and rather than saying you have depression or anxiety, just recognises a problem.

    That said, reading between the lines there is anxiety and depression, as I do have a safety plan - I think you know what that relates to. And while anyone can use the apps I have, in the little research I did found that generally recommended by psych. to patients consider suicide.

    1 person found this helpful
  23. demonblaster
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    20 December 2017 in reply to smallwolf

    👍

    helping ? All takes time aye

  24. Doolhof
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    20 December 2017 in reply to smallwolf

    Hi Smallwolf, DB, Azarrah and All,

    Thanks for the explanation Smallwolf for REBT. These strategies certainly do help when we remember to put them into practise.

    It is amazing how quickly our minds can take us on a journey if we are not aware of our thinking patterns.

    Remembering to use these tools is the key!

    Cheers all from Dools

    1 person found this helpful
  25. smallwolf
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    20 December 2017 in reply to Doolhof

    REBT ... Ummm ... It is no instant fix. While it is not difficult to do it can be hard to believe in the new response / thought when so used to the emotional response.

    Sort of like transforming Gollum back into a Hobbit... Not impossible, just takes time.

    Its that fight that goes on in your head / heart ... Being able to process thing logically, knowing your thoughts are illogical but "not believing" because the negative thoughts are more powerful.

    2 people found this helpful
  26. Doolhof
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    20 December 2017 in reply to smallwolf
    For some reason our minds do seem to find it easier to think about the negative at times. The positives are hiding, needing to be discovered, acknowledged and validated as being possible and achievable!
    2 people found this helpful
  27. smallwolf
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    20 December 2017 in reply to smallwolf
    Mistake in last sentence... Should have read "considering" not "consider". Feel so stupid now.
  28. demonblaster
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    21 December 2017 in reply to smallwolf
    We all have typos Wolf you've enough rot going on, let that one through :)

    Yeah I've started to get logical kicking in, helps a lot & being aware. I've started thinking why & what the thought was, confronting them.

    It's a fight alright but we're strong too


  29. smallwolf
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    21 December 2017 in reply to demonblaster

    The trick is to believe in the new thought. A challenge might be "do not let emotions cloud judgement" and "do not make any judgement until..." but as I have probably said before this is easier said than done. In hindsight I can see that I have over reacted, and yet my next thought is a loser feeling for letting the emotional get the better of me, sort of becoming a cycle. Maybe after doing REBT forms 100 times I might believe but it is slow going.

    On the plus side... Today I found out that I got a DI (distinction) in one of the subjects I did last semester. I had previously thought I only got a CR - unfortunately I am extremely self critical and (for me) a CR is just a pass. Anyway, it was my first happy moment in a long time.

    3 people found this helpful
  30. demonblaster
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    22 December 2017 in reply to smallwolf
    Hey NICELY done distinction woohooo ... you go wolfy :D. Hey credits more than a pass though too.

    Very happy for you

    Yeah instigating new thinking patterns does take time.I'm working on the principle that even one a day's one less crap thought to begin breaking the cycle

    Someone here said once & so true it's habit & someone also said we don't have to believe Kaaboooomb!!! Truth
    One sentence one action can make a difference, can even be walking down street hearing someone talking to someone and something's said that goes PING

    You're taking this on, working at it, for these reasons I believe you'll make it through, power to ya Wolfy (affectionate what can I say, it's more personal nicknames and if we can't reduce we tend to add, hence Wolfy :)

    Nice talking with you :)

    Take good care

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