I Attended An Anxiety Workshop | Part 3

This blog post is the final installment of the I Attended An Anxiety Workshop series. Please check out Part 1 and Part 2 if you haven’t previously done so, which give detailed descriptions leading up to this point. Thank you! ❤

During the month of November, I attended an anxiety workshop on campus called “Confront the Discomfort.I previously shared some techniques that were addressed in Session 1 and Session 2, and I was overwhelmed by the amount of positive comments and feedback I received from all of you. You guys are the reason why I continue to pour my heart and soul into blogging. Blogging is more than just a hobby for me. Blogging is an essential part of my recovery. 

be-still-be-present-be-mindful-quoteDuring Session 3 on November 19, 2019, we talked about positive coping statements for dealing with anxiety. I want to give you some examples of coping statements that I use in my daily life. Next time you are feeling anxious, I challenge you to try applying some positive coping statements similar to the ones I am going to share with you today.

Did you know that these coping statements can be used to manage stress, as well as phobias? Oh boy, so my fear of balloons can be overcome by repeatedly using positive affirmations? Even I am a bit skeptical about this one. Skepticism aside, let’s explore some coping statements, shall we?

♥ Let’s talk about coping statements ♥

(っ◔◡◔)っ ♥ Before we dig deeper into some examples of positive coping statements, what the heck are coping statements to begin with?! ♥

The best definition I found is directly sourced from www.choosehelp.com, which defines coping statements as “truthful positive statements used to replace the negative and untrue thoughts that take over when you feel anxious, stressed, angry and/or when facing overwhelming situations [such as phobias].”

I really love lists. I love lists so much that I had originally intended to write listicles for this week’s blog post. As I started writing these lists, it dawned on me that the material this week is quite dry and does not really spark excitement. If my own writing is gonna bore me to death, then chances are you’ll probably be bored out of your minds too. And nobody would want that. Not me. Not you. Not anyone. 🙇‍♀️

A Simpler Way to Remember Things: Draw a Picture

Disclaimer: Since I do not have the resources to draw and upload my own images for you, I am using images directly sourced online. All images shown below belong to the rightful owner, Rebekah, from @journey_to_wellness_. The images that I am displaying here are strictly for educational purposes ONLY.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

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Rebekah from @journey_to_wellness_ does an excellent job at illustrating effective coping statements for dealing with anxiety.

♥ My New & Improved Listicles ♥

I’ve decided to take it upon myself to improve my otherwise boring lists by making them more visually appealing. This is literally the extent of my artistic abilities, and I know that these lists are not nearly as exciting as the previous illustrations. However, I hope that this information helps you find relief whenever you are feeling stressed out or overwhelmed.

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Coping Statements for Stress.pngWell, I hope you enjoyed reading the I Attended An Anxiety Workshop series as much as I enjoyed writing it! Any feedback would be greatly appreciated since I am trying to improve my blogging and writing skills. Have you used similar positive coping statements in the past when you had to deal with a stressful situation? Please leave a comment by joining the conversation below↓

Thanks for stopping by!

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I Attended An Anxiety Workshop | Part 2

This week is a continuation of last week’s blog post, titled I Attended an Anxiety Workshop. Please check it out if you haven’t read it yet. Thank you! ❤

On November 19, 2019, I attended the last session of “Confront the Discomfort, which is an anxiety workshop offered to students at my university. I’m technically a student but at the same time, I am not a student. I am registered as a student, but I haven’t taken classes since being forced to withdraw in April 2019. I will be starting school again in January 2020. A part of me dreads 2020 because I used to think that 2020 was in the distant future. Well future, here I am so watch out! 🙊

peace-social-text-square-templateDuring the summer, I stopped taking my antidepressant medication. Please do not abruptly stop any kind of medication without speaking with your doctor first. After quitting my medications and significantly reducing my caffeine consumption, I am feeling mentally stronger these days. Hopefully, the progress I have made will be enough once I return to school in the new year. Ultimately, I figured that I had nothing left to lose and everything to gain by attending this anxiety workshop.

“Stop being afraid of what could go wrong, and start being excited of what could go right.” —Tony Robbins

Shine Bright Like A Diamond

As mentioned in my previous blog post, I was unable to attend Session 2. Luckily, they were happy to fill me in on the details. Only I showed up for Session 3 (final week) so I got to word vomit all over ’em. Like diamonds, private counselling sessions like this one are incredibly rare, so I interpreted this opportunity as a blessing in disguise.

Here is what I’m having a hard time fathoming: One student in particular made a lame excuse as to why he couldn’t attend the last two sessions. Dude, here are 2 professionals who are willing to help you for FREE and instead, you rather turn down this opportunity? SMH. 🤦‍♀️

Tip of the Iceberg

Using the summary sheet from Session 2, we talked about The Anxiety Iceberg. If you have studied psychology, you’re probably familiar with this diagram. I don’t have an exact diagram to show you since the one they gave me is barren. Basically, the behaviors that we outwardly express on the surface are attached to underlying subconscious thoughts such as fears. What fears are holding you back in life? Why do you suffer from anxiety and what factors may have caused this? Most often, the root causes stem from negative childhood experiences. Our behaviors are a type of coping mechanism we have adapted in order to survive in the real world. In other words, your fears are meant to protect you.  

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What fears are you hiding under the surface?

As I dug a little deeper into my past, I learned that I have a fear of both success and failure. And balloons. I am afraid of succeeding at something that seems overambitious, like nursing school. In elementary school, I learned that peers will dislike you if you are the smartest kid in the class. In high school, I leaned that nobody will notice you if you are extremely introverted. Loneliness followed me throughout my childhood and adolescent years, which added to my depression and social anxiety.

In university, I was an average student. I took a mainstream degree so I could please my parents and win their approval. Unsurprisingly, a mainstream B.Sc. degree got me mainstream results. I stopped trying to stand out or achieve big dreams. I thought that I wanted to be like everyone else, but trying to fit into mainstream society DID NOT lead to a happier, more fulfilling life.

“Find light in the beautiful sea, I choose to be happy.” —Rihanna, Shine Bright Like a Diamond 💎


Emotional Activators: What is Really Going On?

Instructions:

  • Think of one emotional activator that triggers you.
  • Write it down on the tip of the iceberg.
  • Think of the memories, experiences, thoughts, and beliefs that contribute to this emotional activator in particular.
  • Then write these memories, experiences, thoughts, and beliefs under the water of the iceberg → This is what’s really happening.
  • What can you do to better manage/respond to this activator? Write down 3-5 strategies.
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Drowning to be reborn again as her true self. Source: https://wall.alphacoders.com 

Thank you so much for joining the conversation last week, and leaving such lovely and insightful comments. This week, I plan to finish replying to the rest of your comments. I apologize for taking my sweet-ass time, as I unintentionally got swept away into the addictive world of video gaming. 105+ hours later, I finally beat the game and awoke to the realities of life. As of today, this blog has gained 400 amazing followers which is a HUGE milestone for me. I want to thank all of you from the bottom of my heart, for spreading the love and helping to keep this blog alive.

𝕊𝕥𝕒𝕪 𝕒𝕨𝕖𝕤𝕠𝕞𝕖, 𝕞𝕪 𝕡𝕠𝕤𝕤𝕦𝕞𝕤.

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I Attended an Anxiety Workshop

I recently joined an anxiety workshop on campus because my cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) therapist suggested that I should see what workshops are available to students. Then she told me that she is happy with the progress I’ve made so far, and that I don’t need to book another appointment until the end of the year. Um, okay.

I have some mixed feelings here: Will I be mentally prepared to handle school in January? What if I have another major depressive episode like last time? Will the progress I made this year be enough to overcome failure? 

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“Confront the Discomfort” is the workshop I accidentally stumbled upon two weeks ago. When I signed up that day, I was innocently checking emails instead of studying, and thus, procrastinating like it was nobody’s business. This workshop takes place every Tuesday on campus and runs for a total of 3 weeks. I was unable to attend the second workshop since my toddler was with me that day, and I highly doubt that they would have wanted her running around and screaming the place down.

Fight or Flight

I admit that I was hesitant to join this anxiety workshop, since I often dismiss the possibility that anyone can help me with my problems. However, earlier this year I surrendered to defeat and accepted the fact that I do not have the answers to my problems. Shocking, right? I have some of the answers, but not all of them. Also, I am usually reluctant to join social gatherings since my natural instinct is to isolate myself from people. Social anxiety is real man, but I know that social anxiety is not an uncommon disorder. To make matters worse, [social] anxiety sufferers are the ones who are likely to refuse help, and thus, unlikely to attend these workshops in the first place. And yet, anxiety sufferers are the ones who are most likely to benefit by attending these workshops.

So far, I have only attended Session 1, and I plan to attend the Session 3 next week. I was unable to attend the Session 2 so I am missing that worksheet. Using the summary sheet from Session 1, I want to show you how to do the 5-4-3-2-1 Grounding Technique and the 3-7-8 Breathing Exercise. Both of these techniques are effective at calming your nerves so that you can focus to the present moment. I’ve been using the 3-7-8 Breathing Exercise for months now and can confirm that it works quickly and effectively.

5-4-3-2-1 Grounding Technique 

Preparation:

  • Place both of your feet flat on the floor.
  • Lean back into your chair, and make a mental note of the feeling of the chair under you and against your back.
  • Cross your arms over your chest.
  • Gently tap your shoulders, alternating one side at a time OR place your hands on your thighs and tap one leg at a time.

Directions:

  • Find 5 things that you SEE in the room.
  • Notice 4 things that you can FEEL in the room (feet on the floor, itchy sweater you’re wearing etc.)
  • HEAR 3 things in the room right now (traffic, clock ticking etc.)
  • What are 2 things that you can SMELL OR 2 smells that you like?
  • Get 1 thing that you can taste (mint, gum etc.) OR 1 taste that you like OR think of 1 thing that you like about yourself.

3-7-8 Breathing Exercise 

  • Breathe in quietly through your nose for 3 seconds.
  • Hold your breath for a count of 7 seconds.
  • With pursed lips, exhale slowly through your mouth for 8 seconds.
  • Repeat the cycle as needed until you feel a sense of calmness.
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It is all about finding the clam in the chaos.

I am curious to know if you have attended workshops related to mental health, especially workshops focused on dealing with anxiety. When you were a college or high school student, were similar workshops available to you? If not, is this something that you would be interested in? Please join the conversation and leave a comment below ↓

Thanks for stopping by!

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C’est La Vie

English translation? That’s life.

Oh, and I added a pun too. That’s Vee, the blogger who runs a site called milleniallifecrisis.org. In case you haven’t seen her blog yet, please do me a favor and check out her blog. This blog post will make more sense if you read her blog post first (see image below for a preview). Thank you, Vee, for your lovely shout-out! ❤

 Meeting Vee

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We both happened to be in the right place at the right time. The other day, Vee and I agreed to meet each other and chat over coffee at a local Starbucks. There is something quite relaxing about the smooth jazz usually playing in coffee shops, muffled chatter, and the smell of fresh brewed coffee. Vee is the first blogger who I had the privilege to meet in person from this wonderful WordPress community, so I am feeling very #blessed right now. Did I seriously just use the word #blessed in a sentence? Yes, yes I did.

I believe that every friendship needs to be built on a foundation of trust and respect. Meeting Vee made me feel at peace, and my social anxiety quickly subsided. In a way, I feel like we have been friends for a long time even though we had just met. Also, I felt a strange sense of familiarity as if we crossed paths before.

Fortunately, I learned that socializing with new people does not have to be scary. I often let social anxiety dictate my life so last week, I was really impressed by myself for stepping outside of my comfort zone. Because I am an introvert and a bit of a recluse, I prefer to hide in my house all day, everyday. However, I know that hiding is not a healthy coping mechanism. Not only that, but I recently learned that I actually prefer talking to people in person rather than video chatting or calling them on the phone. There is a stereotype that Millennials dislike making phone calls, so I guess I fit that stereotype! 🤷‍♀️

Finally, we should all celebrate our victories in life, no matter how big or small. As someone who deals with social anxiety and shyness myself, I understand how liberating it can be to push boundaries and face fears. In fact, I was initially drawn towards nursing school because I wanted to see if I could get comfortable with social anxiety.

“Every worthwhile accomplishment, big or little, has its stages of drudgery and triumph: a beginning, a struggle, and a victory.” ―Mahatma Gandhi

I am grateful that I had the rare opportunity to meet Vee in real life, and I hope that we will see each other again in the future. I am wondering if YOU ever met someone from the WordPress community. Who did you meet? Where you excited or nervous prior to meeting them? Please join the conversation and leave a comment below ↓

Thanks for stopping by!

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3.2.1 Quote Me! – Love

I was nominated by the lovely Ilona Madam, who is one of my favourite bloggers in the WordPress community. I love the casual, French vibe she brings to her blog and I feel like we share a lot in common. For example, we are the same age, we are only children, and we are cat moms. She’s also an aspiring model and I’m like, totally not a model.🤷‍♀️

Mes amis, we can all learn from Ilona Madam to dream big in life and persue our passions. If you haven’t already done so, please take a moment to check out her blog. Merci beaucoup! 

Rules: 3.2.1 Quote Me!

“3.2.1 Quote Me” was created by a guy called Rory https://aguycalledbloke.blog/

⭐ Please note that Rory will be re-blogging your responses unless you wish for him to NOT do so 

“Once a week, I will pick a random topic, post two quotes on that topic and nominate 3 bloggers, who in turn will post 2 quotes on the topic and nominate 3 bloggers of their own.” – Rory 

  1. Thank the person who tagged you.
  2. Post two quotes for the dedicated Topic of the Day. → Topic is LOVE ❤️
  3. Select three bloggers to take part in “3.2.1 Quote Me!” → I’m keeping the same topic: LOVE ❤️

➡️ My 2 quotes for the dedicated topic Love:

“Love is like the wind, you can’t see it but you can feel it.”
– Nicholas Sparks, A Walk to Remember

“There are two basic motivating forces: fear and love. When we are afraid, we pull back from life. When we are in love, we open to all that life has to offer with passion, excitement, and acceptance. We need to learn to love ourselves first, in all our glory and our imperfections. If we cannot love ourselves, we cannot fully open to our ability to love others or our potential to create. Evolution and all hopes for a better world rest in the fearlessness and open-hearted vision of people who embrace life.”
 John Lennon

➡️ My nominees:

Huguette

PoojaG

Michelle

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Meeting you 6 1/2 years ago was the best thing that ever happened to me ❤️

♥ HILARY TAN ♥

3.2.1 Quote Me! – Attitude

I was nominated by Ribana who runs a lovely blog called Popsicle Society. Thank you for nominating me, especially since I have been dealing with major depression and haven’t had the motivation to post new content. I hate to admit that this is the first time in 3 weeks since I’ve used my laptop. I appreciate that you thought about me, Ribana! ❤️

If you haven’t already done so, please check out her blog. She has a very positive outlook on life and helps me see things from a different perspective as I continue to challenge my self-limiting beliefs. It is easy for me to get lost in a sea of negative thoughts, and sometimes I need a reminder that there is hope for us all.

Rules: 3.2.1 Quote Me!

  1. Thank the person who tagged you.
  2. Post two quotes for the dedicated Topic of the Day.
  3. Select three bloggers to take part in “3.2.1 Quote Me!”

➡️ My 2 quotes for the dedicated topic Attitude:

“People may hear your words, but they feel your attitude.” John C. Maxwell

“Adopting the right attitude can convert a negative stress into a positive one.” Hans Selye

➡️ My nominees:

easydiet.blog

Nova’s Namaste 365 Online

Photography Trails

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This elegant image of Miku Hatsune illustrates depression in an artistic way. Source: https://weheartit.com/entry/253679447

♥ Hilary Tan ♥

 

Life is Not All Sunshine and Rainbows

dff7ca3cb3feec55e26b53eab08ad421This week, a wave of depression hit me like the plague. I’ve been dragging my feet since Monday, through slush, snow., anger, and sadness. The sun shone a little today but was mostly overcast. Nonetheless, I am enjoying the longer sunny days now that spring is right around the corner – so that’s something to be grateful for. Today wasn’t a good day since my mood made me completely incapable of concentrating on the task at hand and thus, I left clinical practice early. I cannot afford to miss any more days so this depression needs to be nipped in the bud ASAP. At least I am consciously aware of it and want to do something about the problem.

Here’s what I cannot do: I cannot pretend to be fine when I am not fine. In fact, people can see right through my facade. I know exactly what led to my depression and my neuroses caused me to negatively react, ruminate over the things I lack, and continue to dwell on my own shortcomings. However, even with strong willpower and determination to accept life as is, I don’t think that my depression could have been prevented. Eventually, I would have gotten “the news.”

depression-quote-hp-44-1What saddens me most is that I am not where I want to be in life, and I feel stuck which frustrates me so much. Part of me blames myself for royally screwing up school the first time around, thus forcing me to take not one but two degrees, and therefore, wasting 8-9 years of my life in university. I could have been a nurse by now. I could have been working in NICU by now. I could have had a house by now. I could have left this country by now. I could have been accomplishing better things by now. I could have been ahead by now. It feels like I am living in an illusion that is based solely on schedules, lack of time, coffee, deadlines…..and what for?

In order to deal with my depression, I plan on limiting distractions so that I can focus on school or at least until I finish the semester. There are 33 days left in the semester so during this time, I plan to limit all distractions in order to calm my worried little mind.

Thank you for understanding if I’m AFK.

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Less Talking, More Listening

Paradoxes are literally EVERYWHERE in life

What is a paradox? A paradox is a statement that may seem absurd or contradictory but yet can be true, or at least makes sense.

pict--arrow-loop-sales-arrows---vector-stencils-library.png--diagram-flowchart-exampleFunny thing that I learned about the universe is that life is a paradox with many smaller paradoxes. The littlest, most mundane (and sometimes most annoying) things in life may actually be trying to subtly teach you something. If you are a believer in God, then he is truly a master in disguise.

So I have been #not-blessed with this sickness after recovering from conjunctivitis last week. Being sick with one thing after another is far from pleasant. Anyways, my awful sore throat decided that my body would play host to it last Thursday while I was just starting to recover form conjunctivitis. See my last post for the full story. Unfortunately, I have not had a restful sleep in several days and this sore throat has no plans to leave any time soon. After finding out that I have laryngitis AND tracheitis (like is this really a thing?), the doctor told not to talk for the next 2-3 weeks to avoid agitating my larynx which will prevent coughing fits and lead to easier breathing. Because this sickness is probably viral, no OTC meds are going to help me recover any faster no matter how hard I try. Lovely, eh? Knowing that I have little control over my sickness and my health it seems, and that I should just STFU to make everything better, I know this recovery won’t be easy. Talking is part of my job as a student and part of my existence on this planet. I guess what God is trying to teach me is that I will need to do some deep introspective thinking about my life and the people who I interact with which isn’t necessarily a bad thing.

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Maybe its’s time to personally reflect on my own shortcomings to gain a deeper understanding of life | Photo sourced from https://www.pexels.com/photo/amazing-balance-blur-boulder-312839/

Ont thing that I am certain of in life is that everything happens for a reason or is somehow supposed to teach you lessons. So what is my lesson here? To become an active listener. Since I shouldn’t be talking, I will be forced to listen to others and think before I open my mouth.🤐

What lessons are you learning today? This month? Please join the conversation and leave a comment below↓

Thanks for stopping by!

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Sickly People Everywhere

I initially wanted to write about paying it forward, because I have been blessed with little acts of kindness by people lately. This post ended up being completely different than what I had initially planned to write about. I do not post often because I am in school right now while trying to juggle family and school life. I am aware that I focus most of my attention on other areas of my life, and consequently, this blog suffers because of it.  And I am genuinely sorry for my absence. Unfortunately I will be MIA until April 18, 2019.

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Here is the dilemma that I am dealing with. If you are a student, you may have seen this before.

I want to update you on how I have been doing. In December, if you had read my cookie post, you would have known I was really ill. I ended up getting bronchitis which took additional time to recover. By the time I started feeling human again, the winter semester had started so I needed to focus my attention on school. FOCUS is important to me and school is my top priority. I get criticized for saying this my daughter should be my top priority, right? Right. I devote time to both school AND my daughter but it’s really hard to balance things. I cannot be present 100% of the time for my daughter and I admit I am probably not the best mother in the world right now. But if you are going to judge me, try going to nursing school yourself while trying to devote all of your time to your toddler without encountering these problems:

In February, I was hit with the flu and ended up with recurrent bronchitis. Bronchitis seems to linger in sickly Alpha-1 Antitrypsin Deficiency (Alpha-1) carriers like me. It is an inherited condition which presents itself similar to asthma. I noticed that my lungs are worse in my late 20’s than they were in my teenage and childhood years.  For this reason, I cannot participate in activities that require running or any strenuous physical activity or I’ll have air hunger. Believe me, it’s awful.

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Sometimes I escape to this place to get work done. Let nature heal you 😊

I thought I was over being sickly and that my body had enough antibodies to fight off whatever sickness lingers on doorknobs and cursed sneezes. The university is full of sickly people. Students feel the need to attend class despite being ill, which I am guilty of myself. Nursing students cannot afford to skip school. I caught something a few days ago which presented itself as a persistent, uncomfortable sore throat and horse cough. I already know how this is going to end which is likely a head cold and sleepless nights. Fun. Now pair this with conjunctivitis (pink eye) and you really have something going for you. I’ve had conjunctivitis for a few days now and saw a doctor yesterday. The doctor advised me to stay home today so that the medication can work its magic. Hopefully my eyes will be less swollen and red by tomorrow!

How do you find balance in your life? How do you balance personal life with school? Please leave a comment below↓

Thanks for stopping by!

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S.L.E.E.P.S. 7-Day Challenge | Day 7

53893244-businessman-feeling-tired-and-low-battery-This is the final day of the 7-Day S.L.E.E.P.S. Challenge and I am happy that some of you want to try the challenge too! If you end up participating in this challenge, please let me know by sending me a link to your first day so that I can follow along. I am currently experiencing an ocular headache so my vision is really wonky right now. However, I need to finish the 7-Day Challenge regardless of how I’m feeling. I have a lot of respect for bloggers who write on a daily basis. How do you do it?

The rest of this journal entry is practically routine by now. I don’t know if I will have time to blog this weekend since the semester is starting to become more intense. After typing up a schedule for Term 4 yesterday, it finally occurred to me that I actually have homework to do. I am a visual learner so I need calendars and charts to keep me on track.

If you would like to read about the S.L.E.E.P.S. 7-day challenge, you can find my first posting here. This challenge was originally mentioned on a podcast called Operation Self Reset. The purpose of this challenge is to document personal progress, crush goals, and conquer fears over the duration of 7 consecutive days. Here is the breakdown from Day 1:

The acronym is S.L.E.E.P.S.
S – Smile: what made you smile yesterday?
L – Learn: what did you learn today?
E – Exercise: how did you exercise?
E – Execute (x4): what are your goals and what are you doing to achieve them?
P – Phone call: who did you call/text today? Show them gratitude.
S – Smile: what made you smile today?


Day 7 ~ May 24, 2018 tired-and-gaining-weightS – This morning was a blur. I struggled to fall asleep last night and I am still full of worry and doubt. I worry about clinical and keeping up with school. I tried to calm my nerves by taking a shower before bed but I still couldn’t fall asleep 😴 I also tried drinking some strawberry rhubarb parfait tea for the first time and it was delicious. I have several tea samples so I am planning on trying something new tonight.

L – Today, I learned a lot of new skills because I spent the day at my clinical placement. I have very long clinical days which is another reason why I wasn’t in the mood to blog tonight. I have readings to do for tomorrow and need to get ready for bed in a couple of hours. I cannot tell you what I am doing for confidentiality reasons, but clinical is interesting and scary at the same time. I was surprised by the amount of psychology that is directly related to the nursing field. I am actually starting to apply the knowledge that I learned from my psychology classes and I’m using it in real life!

E – I spent the entire day at clinical and have been awake since 5 AM this morning. When I got home, I had zero motivation to do any homework and wasn’t in the mood to blog. I should be doing readings right now but I’m too damn tired. I’m fighting to stay awake as I write this blog post. Also, the dress that didn’t fit me 3 months ago fits me now, so I must have lost weight. I wore this dress two years ago so it makes me happy that I am closer to reaching my pre-pregnancy weight.

E – Here are my short-term plans:
(1) Attend the [protest] meeting tomorrow
(2) Complete Week 2 lecture notes
(3) Finish EBP readings/worksheet for Monday
(4) Write Week 2 anecdotal notes

P – Yes, I actually made several phone calls today! I’m hoping to continue to build on my social skills. Also, I hope to improve my listening skills. If anything, I learned that I shouldn’t be too hard on myself. At least I am taking action by doing something about it. At the end of the day, I can feel good about stepping outside of my comfort zone and trying new things. I believe that uncomfortable situations will eventually become comfortable to you as you continue to make positive changes in your life. You will acquire a higher threshold for tolerance and over time, you will adopt a new level of “normal” in your life.

S – Treating myself from time to time actually puts me in a better mood. Think iced cappuccino. I don’t treat myself very often but if it’s linked to a social event of some kind, then I will allow myself a small treat. I went out with my clinical group so it ended up being a social gathering. Also, given the fact that I was suffering from an ocular headache, the temporary boost of dopamine and sugar spike did help.

Summary

Why did I try this challenge? What was the true intention behind it? Ideally, I wanted to become a more consistent blogger by writing consistently for 7 consecutive days, regardless of my schedule. Also, I was hoping to improve my social skills, focus on fitness, as well as brush up on my writing skills. Because the semester is still young, this was the only opportunity I had to partake in this journey if I was going to do it at all.

I believe that we should start journalling about our S.L.E.E.P.S. on a daily basis. The limitation of this experiment is the time frame. 7 days is not long enough to develop long-lasting habits or do deep reflective work. It takes a lot longer than 7 days to grow as a person and develop long, lasting habits. On a happier note, having the ability to envision your future and develop a detailed plan of action will help you accelerate your progress and enable you to get the results you desire.

I hope that you decide to try this challenge! 😊 Please leave a comment below if you are interested ↓ and feel free to link me to your Day 1 of S.L.E.E.P.S. I would love to read about your journey. Let’s spread some love while crushing our goals!

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S.L.E.E.P.S. 7-Day Challenge | Day 6

comfortableToday is day 6 of the 7-Day S.L.E.E.P.S. Challenge and it is bittersweet. In a way, I am relieved that this challenge is almost finished because my schedule is starting to get busy again. After this challenge is over, I need to complete a few collaboration posts (did I say that right?) that I have been putting off for way too long. But once I have published these posts, I don’t plan on posting for a while so that I can focus on school. You can still find me in the WordPress community but I probably won’t be creating much content.

Last night, I was in physical pain and had a difficult time falling asleep. I knew that there was only one thing to do – call the doctor’s office this morning. It is better to nip it in the bud now than to ignore it and make a trip to the ER later. My schedule doesn’t allow for much free time so I knew that I had to get this issue taken care of now. Like anything in life, nothing happens without action. You can talk about making a change but what good is it without taking action? Ignoring the issue or procrastinating isn’t going to make the problem go away, so you are better off taking care of the annoyance now.

If you would like to read about the S.L.E.E.P.S. 7-day challenge, you can find my first posting here. This challenge was originally mentioned on a podcast called Operation Self Reset. The purpose of this challenge is to document personal progress, crush goals, and conquer fears over the duration of 7 consecutive days. Here is the breakdown from Day 1:

The acronym is S.L.E.E.P.S.
S – Smile: what made you smile yesterday?
L – Learn: what did you learn today?
E – Exercise: how did you exercise?
E – Execute (x4): what are your goals and what are you doing to achieve them?
P – Phone call: who did you call/text today? Show them gratitude.
S – Smile: what made you smile today?

Day 6 ~ May 23, 2018 

S – Have you ever taken the time to appreciate the little things in life? This week has required me to tap into my emotional well being and do some deep reflective thinking. We are wired to avoid deep thinking and instead, we prefer to take the easy route, to distract ourselves, and to avoid conflict. By working on personal development in order to become your best self, you have to become uncomfortable. Most people don’t want to feel uncomfortable because being in a vulnerable place feels wrong to them.

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This is exactly why I love podcasts so much. Usually, I would dive into a good book but this conflicts with my best interests. I am trying to practice minimalism which means that I try not to buy paperback copies anymore. Besides, I never understood the point of a kindle when the iPad does the same thing. Over time, I have learned to embrace audiobooks and podcasts. I also find that I pay more attention while listening to a podcast than I do from reading a good book. This is how my brain is wired, and in case you are wondering where my advice comes from, I did not make this stuff up. Nobody on this planet is born full of knowledge. We learn from others. I can only tell you what works and what doesn’t from my personal experiences.

L – What did I learn today? To take action when there is a problem! My main reason for taking action was physical pain, and fear of being in even more pain by Monday. Don’t procastinate. It is only the mind’s way of playing a trick on you. Procrastination is nothing more than an illusion that tricks you into feeling fine when in reality, you will need to face the problem eventually. Chances are, the problem will escalate into a worse case scenario the longer you put things off. Now if only I could apply this to school work. I came up with a plan last night to make a chart on the computer that includes all of the due dates week-by-week, similar to the one that was provided to us last semester.

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Spongebob Squarepants speaks to me on a spiritual level •◡•

E – I saw the doctor on campus today and got some exercise. I could feel the tingling in my legs while I was walking home. Every day, I can feel my body becoming more and more toned which is definitely a result of my walks to and from campus. My clothes are starting to fit better and I am feeling more confident these days. If you are trying to lose weight, ditch the scale. You can tell if you are getting healthier based on how your clothes fit along with knowing where you stand in terms of Body Mass Index (BMI).

E – Here are my plans for today:
(1) Figure out a carpooling schedule for tomorrow morning
(2) Write up a document with week-to-week due dates
(3) Call in-laws to see how my daughter is doing
(4) Send some important emails this week

P – I haven’t made any phone calls yet because the day is still young. I am planning on calling the in-laws again to see how my baby girl is doing. I decided to write this blog post earlier in the day so that I am not overwhelmed by it later tonight. Tomorrow is a very busy day for me and I need to prepare for it. Also, I have been thinking about a family friend who is expecting. I often wonder how she is doing. As much as I dislike making phone calls, I really think that I should call her. I have been putting it off due to social anxiety but this is exactly why I should do it. Getting uncomfortable is the key to becoming a better person.

S – What made me smile today? Today, I talked to another student who is in my program and she was very friendly. We chatted for a while and I learned that we share a lot in common. Talking to her made me smile. In contrast, the doctor who accompanied me wasn’t particularly friendly. I could tell that she was in a hurry and didn’t tell me why she was taking my blood pressure, which is very unprofessional in my opinion. I believe that all healthcare professionals need to show more compassion towards their patients which should be their primary focus prior to providing treatment.

Will you join me on this 7-day challenge? Please leave a comment below ↓ and feel free to leave a link to your blog if you decide to join me. I would love to read about your S.L.E.E.P.S. Let’s spread some love while crushing our goals!

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S.L.E.E.P.S. 7-Day Challenge | Day 5

Firstly, I want to thank everyone for visiting this blog. Without your support, I wouldn’t have had the motivation or energy to blog consistently. I am amazed that you want to read about the musings of my fantastical life as a nursing student, wife, and mother. If you are new here, this blog is not only focused on personal growth and development but it also highlights the typical struggles of a 20-something Millennial. My goal is to connect with people who may also be dealing with similar issues. I want you to know that you are not alone in this world. And it is okay if you don’t agree with my values and beliefs. To each their own.   

Secondly, if you would like to read about the S.L.E.E.P.S. 7-day challenge, feel free to keep calm and read on. You can find my first posting here. This challenge was originally mentioned on a podcast called Operation Self Reset. The purpose of this challenge is to document personal progress, crush goals, and conquer fears over the duration of 7 consecutive days. Here is the breakdown from Day 1:

The acronym is S.L.E.E.P.S.
S – Smile: what made you smile yesterday?
L – Learn: what did you learn today?
E – Exercise: how did you exercise?
E – Execute (x4): what are your goals and what are you doing to achieve them?
P – Phone call: who did you call/text today? Show them gratitude.
S – Smile: what made you smile today?

Day 5~ May 22, 2018 

S – I have tried convincing friends to blog, especially those who may feel stuck in life, suffer from depression, and/or possess creative writing potential. Personally, writing is very therapeutic for me and it has helped me untangle many complex thoughts that would have otherwise continued to make me depressed and hold me back from challenging the unknown. Last night, I tried convincing a friend to blog again and today, she told me that she wrote a new blog post. I am happy that she took my advice and I hope that she continues to write more often.

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LWhat did I learn today? Where to locate the lost and found. When you are as forgetful as I am, it is important to be able to solve your own problems. The lost and found didn’t have my computer mouse, but I ended up finding it nonetheless. It turns out that kind souls really do exist! My husband was less than amused since he was so adamant that I needed to welcome modern technology into my life. During the long weekend, he even jumped on the opportunity to convince me to buy a brand new mouse. First, there was one mouse. Then, there were two mice. Gosh, I’m turning into a hoarder! 😱

E – Lots and lots of walking. I’m less lazy this semester because it is summer. Actually, I am less lazy because waiting for the bus while the sun beating down on me is actually worse than walking to campus. We didn’t even get to enjoy spring this year. I wasn’t prepared for these drastic temperature changes and I’m still trying to adjust to the unpredictable weather here.

E –  The week has been one big blur so far:
(1) What am I doing again? Not homework, obviously.
(2) Yeah, I’m not filling this out today.

P – I called the in-laws today and Rebecca is adjusting well. She’s a very independent 18-month old and I think she bypassed the shyness stage that most toddlers experience. Also, she’s very comfortable around people so I’m confident that she will enjoy staying with her grandparents. I’m also trying to set up a Skype date with a friend but it’s very difficult to arrange. We have very busy schedules and I am terrible at initiating social events. Sometimes, being extremely introverted which borderlines #hermit-life is safer than being a social butterfly.

S – I am grateful for my health *knock on wood.* Last semester, I became very sick near the beginning of the semester. I encountered a couple of sick people today and had to sanitize my hands 10 times. Are they unaware of herd immunity? Please do us a favor and stay home if you are sick. In terms of stress, this week is like the calm before the storm. I don’t know what I should be doing or studying right now. It is difficult for me to stay focused on anything without a visualized plan. Am I about to face another wave of depression or am I drowning in an ocean of uncertainty?

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Is this really what depression feels like? Sometimes I feel like I am drowning underwater. Source: http://i.ntere.st/a/170318124/p

Will you join me on this 7-day challenge? Please leave a comment below ↓ and feel free to leave a link to your blog if you decide to join me. I would love to read about your S.L.E.E.P.S. Let’s spread some love while crushing our goals!

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