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  1. #1
    Entertaining Cracker five sounds's Avatar
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    Default Anxiety and Paralysis

    well it's that special time of year where i start a thread about my inability to keep up with life again.

    i'm feeling really overwhelmed lately, and the more i feel that way, the less i'm able to do. i just read an article that summed up my experience pretty well:

    "Sometimes I find myself sitting on the couch staring into space. I want to get up and do the things on my internal to-do list, but something stops me. So instead, I just sit there. This is a behavior I've engaged in so frequently that I barely notice it when it happens. Today, however, I started to analyze why it is that I do this. I came up with the answer: I'm overwhelmed.

    From an outside perspective, one might thing I just want to relax or decompress. A more judgmental person might even call me "lazy." It's not laziness though, it's anxiety.

    I'm sitting on that couch fearful of all the things that I haven't done and need to accomplish. There are so many items on that internal list that I feel paralyzed. I can't possibly accomplish them all. When I start to think about all of my tasks at once, my mind starts spinning and I don't want to think anymore. So I sit there and intentionally try not to think. "

    the article suggests making a list, doing one, and rewarding yourself. i've tried this so many times. i just wrote my list. but it has never really helped me.

    anyone else have this experience? what has helped you?
    You hem me in -- behind and before;
    you have laid your hand upon me.
    Such knowledge is too wonderful for me,
    too lofty for me to attain.
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  2. #2
    Senior Member prplchknz's Avatar
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    I relate to this. and the you're lazy comments don't help cuz I already feel shit for not doing the stuff. and you telling me i'm lazy just makes me feel less than. I don't know the solution, tbh


    I had a solution just be drunk for year (that back fired) i figure when your drunk people are like oh he/she is drunk and they're angry but if you're not doing shit cuz of fear not as much sympathy. don't do this.
    In no likes experiment.

    that is all

    i dunno what else to say so

  3. #3
    Entertaining Cracker five sounds's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by prplchknz View Post
    I relate to this. and the you're lazy comments don't help cuz I already feel shit for not doing the stuff. and you telling me i'm lazy just makes me feel less than. I don't know the solution, tbh
    so true. i've been called lazy my whole life. it's like getting kicked while you're down. if i already feel like i can't do it, telling me i'm fundamentally flawed and failing as a result is not gonna motivate me to try.
    You hem me in -- behind and before;
    you have laid your hand upon me.
    Such knowledge is too wonderful for me,
    too lofty for me to attain.

  4. #4
    Senior Member prplchknz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by five sounds View Post
    so true. i've been called lazy my whole life. it's like getting kicked while you're down. if i already feel like i can't do it, telling me i'm fundamentally flawed and failing as a result is not gonna motivate me to try.
    exactly. read my edit
    In no likes experiment.

    that is all

    i dunno what else to say so

  5. #5
    across the universe Olm the Water King's Avatar
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    I'm not quite sure what advice to give, but as far as anxiety is concerned (and unpleasant emotions in general), I find that the more I try to fight them, the worse it gets. If I turn my mind towards accepting what I'm feeling, it actually makes it less intense and easier to deal with. What I do is mindfully observe my emotion, try to describe it, and try to accept it, not fight it. Then I do whatever I'm supposed to be doing.

    I still haven't quite mastered this, but I've seen some significant improvements since adopting this attitude. This is part of the skills of DBT (dialectical behavioral therapy). If you want, look into it. I've found it quite helpful. Here's one book I've liked quite a lot: The Expanded Dialectical Behavior Therapy Skills Training Manual: Practical DBT for Self-Help, and Individual & Group Treatment Settings: Lane Pederson, Cortney Sidwell Pederson: 9781936128129: Amazon.com: Books
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    literally your mother PocketFullOf's Avatar
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    I have, and adderal helps. It also makes it worse because when I'm not on it I can't do anything. Maybe being around someone who energizes you will be good.


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  7. #7
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    Make a list and prioritize. Pick out one or two tasks that you need to work on first. If you can't get off the couch to start one of them, then take one and divide it in half. See if that will get you off the couch. If not, divide it in quarters and see if you can do a quarter. And so on. For me, I often find it easy to get started on a task if I say, "I'll work on it for five minutes and then take a break and do something else."

    IOW, for most of my to-do list stuff, I tackle that stuff in 5-minute segments. Cleaning, getting something done on the computer, fixing something that's broken: I just tackle that stuff in five-minute segments throughout the day when I take breaks from the bigger projects. Don't know if that'll help, but I find I can get off the couch if I only have to deal with five minutes of a boring task. It's not super-productive, but I get stuff done.

    It's like the old saying about a journey of 1,000 miles starts with a single step. So just focus on taking a step or two on a regular basis, and figure the journey will take care of itself.
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  8. #8
    Entertaining Cracker five sounds's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PocketFullOf View Post
    I have, and adderal helps. It also makes it worse because when I'm not on it I can't do anything. Maybe being around someone who energizes you will be good.
    My mom keeps telling me I should get something like that. I'm resistant because i just want to work on making my life more my pace instead of working in overdrive on drugs.

    Being around energizing people is actually a great idea. It helps me to be around energy.
    You hem me in -- behind and before;
    you have laid your hand upon me.
    Such knowledge is too wonderful for me,
    too lofty for me to attain.
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  9. #9
    across the universe Olm the Water King's Avatar
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    I highly doubt Adderall's a good idea for this sort of thing.

  10. #10
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    Also, think in terms of "quick and dirty." Perfectionism can sometimes paralyze me and make me see a task as insurmountable or impossible, because it will require too much work to do it right. So I stop and ask, "How can I do this task quick and dirty?" IOW, what's the absolute minimum I can do to get it done? How would a true slacker handle it?

    I brainstorm a "quick and dirty" way of handling the task, and all of a sudden I get enthusiastic about doing the task; it's positively fun to do a half-assed job on a task that's been bugging me forever. I look at the finished project, and I say, "You know what? Good e-fucking-nough" and pat myself on the back.

    I have a list of affirmations that I look at every morning. One of the most important is "PN/Fi: BTGWKHTHI (DTQ&D)." That's shorthand for "My Fi Personal Narrative shall include the following item: Be that guy who knows how to handle it: Do things quick and dirty."
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