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It Helps Me, It May Help You

I'm not shy about my own mental health issues. I've posted captions ranting multiple times and I've posted stories discussing in more detail. I'm not afraid to share with my super niche online audience under my alias last name...brave, right? But I realized that I only have thrown out negativity. I've only said "I'm not doing too hot" but nothing of the opposite when it's true. And I've never given my own personal tips (or professional from my therapist) on how to get out of the hole or funk. Or just self-improvement. So without further ado, some quotes that have helped me...

"Respond reasonably rather than irrationally react"

I like this one so much that I made it into a graphic for my phone background. I'm the type of person who needs to see it constantly or hear it often for it to click. I'm an out-of-sight-out-of-mind type of person so having this sentence in my line of vision 60% of my day is ideal. Pintrest-esq phone background? Perfect, perfect, perfect! I am an emotional person. I have always been a little dramatic and intense. I feel happiness at enormous levels but I also feel scared, sad, jealous, and angry at those levels too. Strike that...I do not get angry much at all if ever, it's usually another emotion but I digress. I react with my emotions rather than logically. I've been using this quote/background for the past week. Yes, week. But we all start somewhere right? I know it'll be baby steps before I can be a logical responder without consciously thinking to be but it's stopped me from a few bad moments. Once again, we all gotta start somewhere to change or build a habit but it's already aided me in conversations that would've otherwise went south.

"What is out of my control does not need my attention"

It's easy to say it but it's hard to believe it. I am someone who likes to be in control constantly. I like to know the ins and outs and backstory and predict the future. I do not do well with not being in the know but I have learned that not everything can be how I picture it. I can not give attention to what is outside my control because it'll only cause pain and suffering.

"Pain is caused by others but suffering is caused by oneself."

I've faced my fair share of pain. Being told my dad's sickness is incurable and terminal? Having my first three-way phone call attack at 15? Having my heart broken at 24 and again but worse at 25? Going through sorority recruitment and not getting a bid? There are some pains that never go away and some that last a few days or weeks. I think you can tell which is the 50% here or there with my examples. Pain is caused by the actions of yourself or others. Suffering can only be caused by oneself. I didn't get picked for AOII or ADPi and that was painful for a 19 year old Clare, but I went out the same night as bid day with several friends and had a great time in NYC. I faced pain caused by a room full of college women but did not let myself suffer. There are other times, like the bigger pain aka heartbreak and terminal illness, that suffering is inevitable. You think about it constantly. You wonder what you could do to change the situation but in both cases, there is nothing. And that is the suffering you cause yourself. Overthinking, over analyzing, not enjoying the current moment, and dwelling on the past are the root of suffering. I'm not a master of skipping over suffering but therapy is giving me methods of accepting and releasing pain so that it does not turn to suffering.

"Words are only those, actions are practice, and practice gets near perfect."

I can claim I'm working on confidence or patience. I can claim I'm doing my part to better myself. But those are only words. I have been working on my exercises to control my anxiety. I do my five things you can see, four things you can touch, etc. I count and control my breathing. I have picked up embroidery to teach myself that good things take time and not to rush. I'm putting skills that I need to learn into practice. I am trying my damn best to be better for myself. Actions in practice will get near perfect.

I'm helped by these quotes and I don't know if anyone else can be, but if you gain something from this - than I feel joy from being able to share this with you.

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