Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Hysteria--great Def Leppard album, sucks as an emotional state.

It's been a week and some major change since I actually managed to pay off my credit cards (and I got proof in the mail and over the phone this week; acknowledgement from my credit counseling people, trying to sell me their budgeting and money management education services and I subsequently called the credit card people after and got confirmation on my own that it's paid off) and I'm sliding into hysteria as I again fall into a non-goal-oriented state. Even toward the end of the pay off project, I was getting anxious, and not because "ooh, I'm so close, don't let anything go wrong now!" sort of way, but in a "it's really just a matter of sitting and waiting to actually have money in my accounts because it's pretty much automated and completed from here" way. I mean, really, the last month was pretty much just pro forma--the work that had earned the money had been done, so it's not like I was actively working toward a goal anymore, just...holding my own space.

Now, with the pay off official, it's become an active anxiety because I no longer have a goal to focus on in my non-structured time. I mean, if nothing else, paying off my debts gave me something to distract myself with. See, here's how my mind works: I'm a macrothinker, a philosopher. There are days when I can think thoughts that are so big, I can't even express them in human language and I wonder how they manage to fit into the narrow confines of my own skull; I must be channeling them from another dimension because they're just so big and encompassing and wide. Unfortunately, this is also greatly anxiety provoking in much the same way that standing on the edge of the Grand Canyon and looking down is: all that space, the urge to jump and cut all ties is just so...strong. It's almost a survival instinct for me to be anxious, it pulls me back from the Big Thoughts and back to the temporal plane, even if it does drive me apeshit.

So, since I have to keep my mind tied down like the inconvenient hot air balloon it is, I need something to ruminate on. Alas, I got in the habit early of worrying as a means of keeping my mind in touch with my body, which is really a bad habit to get into. If for no other reason than it will, in the words of the Southern Belles, "give me lines." Another bad habit I have is creating reasons for me to worry (ie, my debt, my career choices) which also sucks the big hairies, but one thing at a time.

Yeah. Anxiety. Paying off my debt gave me a goal to work toward, which was excellent for keeping me distracted from both the big hot air balloon thinking and the worries, but now it's done. I've accomplished the goal. Since I'm just learning a new way of dealing with keeping my mind in this reality, I'm not accustomed to the concept of framing new goals to deal with when finished with one. And I've left it too long (memo to me: keep my goals sequential, or at least formulate a new one before accomplishing the first). So we're back to the anxiety again. It's a dreadful habit, really, and even though I'm trying, trying, trying to distract myself and give myself a new goal, I'm a) crap at it and b) fighting an ingrained habit while trying to use a very new skill.

(and if you can't tell how anxious I am by the circular nature of the preceeding, you really aren't paying attention)

So. Stop. Stop the circling, stop it, stop it right now! I have tons of things to do, whether I want to do them or not, so I can just stop it right. Now. For firstly, I have the Doctor Who scarf. I am setting myself a due date of November 1, which traditionally isn't even really fall yet in the Midwest, but with weather being what it has been of late, we might have three or four blizzards before then. But I have to finish the scarf, and I will set myself a goal of...I don't know. I've got 2/3 of the scarf to go, and November 1 is a month and a half away, which is, what, 8 weeks? 6? So I have to accomplish another 1/3 in three weeks, and the final third in the subsequent three. That's a lot of knitting, and I'll probably be certifiable by the time I finish up, but it's something.

I also need to take my yoga back up. All that deep belly breathing is excellent for keeping the mind centered and tethered.

If I had a better opinion of myself, I'd volunteer for something, although I'm not sure what. As I still have a deep-seated conviction that I'm somehow just eternally in everyone's way, I try to keep myself as far out of society as possible. I think I need to cut the edge before I can begin to think of volunteering, anyway--in this shape, I'd be snappish and surly, and who really would WANT anyone like that helping them out?

Oy. I do know that at present I need to avoid alcohol. It would be so easy to self-medicate in a bad way.....

  1. Doctor Who scarf by November 1
  2. Get on a schedule with cleaning my dog and performing routine maintenance on him--ears once a day, cleaning the claws twice a week, soaking the nasty toe every other day
  3. Learn how to cook meats in various ways, particularly fish
  4. Improve my diet to include more plants (I keep adding this one; but it is a good one)
  5. Take up yoga or some other form of exercise, three times a week, so I break a glow
  6. Plan a vacation because, hot damn, I need one badly
  7. Plan out various gifts for the holidays upcoming, both the ones to make and the ones to buy

Do you think that's enough to be starting with?

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