There are three traps that I often fall into.
- I want to find a ‘cure’ to ‘fix’ how I am.
- Once I find this cure, no ‘maintenance’ is needed.
- Fast = Good
But in reality, none of these are true.
There isn’t a cure for how I am, because it isn’t a disease. It’s simply how I was made.
It’s tempting to look for the one thing that will ‘fix’ all my problems, but I won’t find it. It won’t just be one thing, because many different factors contribute to them, so obviously the help needs to be multi-faceted as well.
Compare this to owning a home. If you stopped regular maintenance (mowing the lawn, cleaning, repairs) it would become overgrown, messy and costly. The same is true with my mind. I need to remember that this maintenance isn’t messing up or failing. No one expects a house to maintain itself, so why would I expect that from my mind?
I may find mental tools to manage, or new thought patterns, but there is no cure-all magic potion.
There will be ongoing ‘maintenance’ for as long
as I want to be a functional person.
I’ve come to notice that my life goes something like this:
Feel bad, regulate, feel better, repeat.
Yes, it’s messy. It can be discouraging. But it’s all part of a process.
I know that messy, slow processes make people very uncomfortable. But this is a wrong viewpoint. Everything comes from a process. And sometimes this process is a messy, slow one.
Going back to our home comparison, now you are going to declutter. Well, in order to declutter, you need to take everything out of the room and put in somewhere else so you can sort through it. Temporarily, your house will be messier than before, but in the end, it’ll be cleaner and more organized.
This is how it can be while you are maintaining yourself. The process of wrestling with anxiety or with learning disabilities, etc., can be a messy process. Wrestling with this issue is uncomfortable for you and for others watching you, but for the moment this is how it needs to be.
Let it be slow. Let it be messy. It’ll be okay in the end.
Maintaining myself emotionally is a daily choice.
Repeat your coping methods as many times as needed, even if it’s always, every minute of every day at times. But don’t be discouraged, because, you know that a better time will come. It’s all part of a cycle.