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Showing posts from January, 2015

Let's Talk About Selfies

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Social media is being crushed under a bonanza of selfies. Oxford English Dictionary even crowned it word of the year for 2013. Really. And while the jury is out on whether the selfie is a 'bad' or 'good' thing, it's certainly worth reflecting on.

Do you take selfies? And if so, why? Do you even know why you do it?

Some say it's a fun way to show the world what you're up to; I'm of the belief it's a sad way to beg the world for validation on aesthetics.

Sometimes selfies can be downright toxic. If you have the misfortune of battling an eating disorder, I would suggest steering clear of tags on social media containing the word #recovery, #eatingdisorder, #anorexiarecovery, #bulimiarecovery, etc. Why? Because people's illness have also decided to jump on the bandwagon. Small frames are contorted into positions to emphasize the current state of malnourishment, and faces with dead eyes and pouty lips leer out, desperate for the affirmation that she/h…

Song of the Day

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I like this song by an Irish artist called Wallice Bird. This song is called "To my Bones". You can have your money back if it doesn't cheer you up- even a little.

I like this bit: 

"Oh life I love you to my bones Man, everything is just so simple When you're laughing until your face is sore"

Listenhere.

Feeling suicidal is temporary. The act of suicide is final.

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I think we can agree that feeling suicidal is a feeling (hint: it says it in the phrase!). And the issue with feelings is that they are not facts. We can feel like a burden, but we are not a burden. We can feel like a failure, but we are not a failure. So, relying on feelings is a risky way to live your life. Because feelings sometimes aren't truth. In fact, they're often not the truth.

The other issue with feelings is that they change. A lot. You've probably felt at least three feelings since reading this post. And probably felt one hundred feelings since yesterday. And if you can realise this, they hurrah- because you'll also understand that helpful phrase: This too shall pass. It's true though. Those deep (and frighteningly dark) feelings of wanting to end your life can and do pass. 

Many people are alive today and are able to explain the feeling. Many people have survived feeling suicidal, because as we discussed, feelings change. A lot. And sometimes we have …

Simple advice can often do the trick!

Sometimes I used to get so irritated when people offered me advice. Sure what did they know? They didn't understand what it felt like to want to die, so why should I listen to them?

Well, I've since learned that sometimes the people with the best advice, are actually the ones who "don't get it".

If you think about it, those Advice Givers have somehow managed to figure out a way to live their life so that they don't get sucked down the Black Hole. They still have difficulties of course, because we are all human. They still get hurt, struggle with money, have difficulties in their jobs, fights in their families, bereavements and so forth, but yet they manage to cope.

When they suggest you focus on all the good in your life, they actually have a point!
Maybe it would be helpful to think about your blessings.

When they suggest to just distract yourself from your problems, they actually have a point!
Maybe it would be helpful to throw on a movie or get out for som…

January Blues? Nahh

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So, it's Monday and it's January, and it's allegedly the most depressing day of the year if we want to listen to the media.

That's a pretty heavy introduction to the week if we take these factors and use them as a foundation for our mindset. People bandying about the phrase 'January Blues' and despairing at the dark evenings, and gosh now isn't it only Baltic as well, the roads aren't great etc. etc! 
January is not unique, Mondays are not unique; there's always something to complain about, and there's always people only too happy to do the complaining.
But where does that ever get us?
Today could be a fantastic day, but if we're already being told it's the most depressing day of the year, how much of a chance are we really giving it?

I don't intend to disregard the fact that January, like any day or month, can be challenging, but I want to offer up the possibility that it could be great- either way, it's up to us.
My bus was ten minut…

Look For the Possibility

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They say, 'when you hit rock bottom, the only way is up'. 

I remember a nurse in the local mental health services saying that to me when I had found myself in that cold hard place, and it was said with such certainty and unshakable confidence, that it has stuck with me since. And echoed in my mind each time I revisited that rock bottom (yes, I undertook a few revisits..y'know just to be sure it still sucked..)

When you feel like there is zero hope, nothing is going right and life is losing any inch of appeal it may have had, yeah it makes sense that the likelihood of it getting much worse is significantly smaller than the possibility of it getting even a teeny bit better.

When you're in that place of despair and any idea of hope is akin to a fragile wisp of smoke, having a sentence like that is helpful to refocus and think, 'this is it, this is as bad as it gets and I'm still here. It can only improve from here.' 

Saying it's a horrible place to be is an un…

Go anyway – Don’t let going alone mean not going at all.

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Social media has introduced us to a world of photos, check-ins and tags enabling us to share our experiences not only with those with us at the time, but every follower we have too. This can give the illusion that we or others are surrounded by friends in our every endeavour and everyone is always up for going out and having a good time.
Real life however, can be a little bit lonelier, as everyone is busy with their own stuff, keeping up with packed schedules or are just exploring different hobbies. Have you ever wanted to go somewhere but because none of your friends were going you passed up the opportunity? I’d hazard a guess and say it’s probably happened once or twice.  Maybe it was a gig, or going to a new film or just out for a coffee, there can often be a long list of things that we want to do.
While it’s definitely great to enjoy these things with people, they may not always be ready to go. And if it’s the case that no one is available, is it weird to go anyway? Going out alone …

LET yourself have fun.

It seemed too simple.

The complexities of the dark feelings made it seem pointless, even stupid.
But Fun - and the capital 'F' is justified, I think - was essential to pulling me out of the black hole in which I dwelt and helping me to grow enough courage to explore why it might be worth giving life a try. Fun brings relief like a breath of fresh air and shakes up thinking in a way that can have many different results. I am never the same after having a bit of fun.
I would not let myself enjoy anything, for what felt like the longest of time. I stayed in my room when my family had company. I stuck my head in a book instead of conversing with my siblings or parents, never staying in a room longer than was absolutely necessary. I replied in the negative to invitations to go out. Anywhere. I never bought new clothes or went for walks on sunny days or read what columnists had to say about the latest television phenomenon. If I was obliged to attend something like a birthday party,…