For the past few months, I have been very worried. And angry. So, so, so angry. Mostly because it was the middle of winter, and he cancelled my car registration and wasn’t and isn’t paying child support. I didn’t have enough money to get a car on the road…. the list goes on. I was blindingly mad. Now, I know those of you in blog-land don’t know me in real life, but I’m not a generally angry type person. I actually rarely felt angry…. like EVER. So this was a change. For me, it wasn’t a change for the better. I constantly rotated between anger and crippling depression and once you threw sickness on top of it, I was a miserable, moody, emotional mess.
I’ve felt guilty, too. I have two people in this house who adore me with all of their being. The little one, who just adores me for existing, and the boyfriend who is so patient, and kind, and loving. They were not getting the best version of me. Or even the second best version. It had to stop. I just felt like it never would.
I knew it had to change. I needed to stop just being a ball of anger and worry. Here is what I attempted to do:
- To not overthink (which is difficult for a person with excessive ruminations). I used thought stopping techniques that I learned in my years of therapy. Sometimes they work, sometimes no. But if I had to obsess, I would focus on the one thing that was coming up next and plan for it rather than let my worries run wild.
- I took things one at a time. Or tried to. I focus on one thing I could change or make a difference about. There were lots of things that I couldn’t deal with presently. I couldn’t get to certain places I needed to because of the no car thing. While it wasn’t ideal or the highest paying, I took jobs at schools where I know I could get rides to and from. I saved up money. I registered my car. Honestly, that probably helped the most. I was able to get out of the house. I felt less trapped.
- I used the support system I DO have. I lost a lot of relationships with the divorce, including my immediate and extended family. I am so lucky to have a few friends who went above and beyond with helping me get to places I needed to go. AND provide emotional support.
- I made a game plan. I love a good list. So I wrote everything out. A whole brain dump of all the things that I needed to do and prioritized what would need to be done first.
- Once I was able to take action, I didn’t delay. I acted on my game plan immediately, instead of procrastinating like I normally do. It helped to know that I was checking things off, even if they were gradual. And when I checked a big thing off, it felt great!
- I focused on what I DO have. Even in a time like this, where I felt out of control and lost, I found returning to gratitude and focusing on the little things helped ground me. I simply had to look around at the people in my life and know that when times are tough, there are people that love me and that I love.
These are just a few of the steps I took. And trust me, I faltered quite a bit. I’m still figuring out this whole new life, and sometimes it seems daunting. But if I look back at where I was when I started this I can see that I am on a path of growth and change. What is something that you do that is helpful when you deal with worries? I’d love to hear some tips!