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How do you keep up the good work looking after yourself when you could return to old habits?

Hey everyone,

 

I am interested in how you guys keep your stamina up when you have been coping really well for a long time but then when something else happens and you feel like you might fall back into old habits.

 

What sorts of things do you turn to to help yourself get through this one extra thing until you are feeling alright again?

 

Im not sure if that makes sense... I'll explain what has lead me to this question.

 

Ive been feeling like Ive been doing really well lately. Where in the past I would have been unable to cope with all the things life has thrown at me these last few weeks I have done incredibly well. I am super super proud of myself for that. But today, Ive had some moments of feeling like Im not sure if I can keep it up. I feel a bit like Ive been strong for so long that surely it is okay for me to break down now.

 

But then I realised, the "breaking down" I was considering was made up of unconstructive old habits, and although, yes, I can show weakness and be vulnerable, that does not mean I need to resort to those destructive behaviours.

 

Instead I changed my thinking to a different kind of "breaking down" one that I dont think should be considered "breaking down". I allowed myself to get upset, have a good cry and feel angry for a bit.

 

But instead of turning the anger to myself, I turned on my favourtie TV show (Miranda) and made a cup of tea. I am feeling more calm now, and relieved that I was able to get through this additional thing again.

 

So, beating around the bush, when you are feeling like that...

 

What do you do to help remind yourself that you are doing really well (!!!), and that you can keep going?

What things remind you how amazing you are?

How do you reinforce that you've been doing a great job and remind yourself to keep trying?

 

Coz those strategies we turn to are incredible resources!!! I would love to hear what works for you! Maybe we'll all discover some new things we hadnt considered to try out for ourselves next time Smiley Happy

 

I'd love to learn from you guys!!

 

Here is the sunset Ive been admiring while writing to you all... Smiley Happysunset.png

 

TL;DR [too long; didn't read] - answer the bold questions

|| Life runs in cycles, the wheel never stops turning, no matter how dark the night morning comes, no matter how cold the winter, spring comes. When you feel despair know that the wheel is turning, joy will come. ||

Re: How do you keep up the good work looking after yourself when you could return to old habits?

Hey @ClCl! I like the little self-care thing you did with Miranda and the cup of tea, and allowing yourself to be upset. It's a normal feeling, just like our positive emotions, and it generally isn't helpful or healthy to ignore our mind states. However, like you said it doesn't mean we have to go about being upset and 'breaking down' in destructive ways.

 

I will sometimes cut my losses, so to speak. I'll watch my mindstate, along with other physical signs like tiredness and appetite to try and guesstimate how much time I have till I wear myself down completely. Then, before that moment happens, I'll do something to help me relax and wind down without falling apart. It doesn't always work (since I have always had trouble staying aware of my body) and sometimes I have to rely on warning signals like losing sleep or irritability to figure out when the breaking point might happen. After several years of practice though, I think I'm getting better at it.

 

I like keeping reminders of things I've done and places I've been around my desk. There's all sorts of stickers and flyers and postcards and notes from all the places I've gone and people I've met to remind me of the good times, and all the great stuff I've already done. Not sure if that answers the question, but it's always helped for me to have reminders at eye-level

Re: How do you keep up the good work looking after yourself when you could return to old habits?

Thanks for your response @safari93!

That is a great thing to do, to keep an eye out for yourself along the way and make sure you are appropriately spreading your energy. I would like to try that out more!
I am sure all that practice will have benefited you greatly so far! And will continue to do so Smiley Happy

Reminders like that is a great idea! It wasnt really what I was getting at but I am so pleased you shared it anyway! Its a great way of remembering the things you can achieve!
|| Life runs in cycles, the wheel never stops turning, no matter how dark the night morning comes, no matter how cold the winter, spring comes. When you feel despair know that the wheel is turning, joy will come. ||

Re: How do you keep up the good work looking after yourself when you could return to old habits?

This is something I'm really really bad at.

Recently I put a 'stay strong' and a 'be brave' cards on my mirror to remind myself of getting through the tough times.

And lately I've been reminding myself that even though I'm struggling a lot I'm not resorting to my old behaviour of self harm etc.
Coming on RO is one of the ways i remind myself of how far I've come and the support pushes me to keep going.
===========================
Trying to make my misery
just a piece of my history
A little less victim a little more victory
-Icon for Hire

Re: How do you keep up the good work looking after yourself when you could return to old habits?

That's a great way of thinking @redhead! Focusing on the positive things you've accomplished even when you're struggling can prove to yourself that you've got the strangth to get through it and not go back to what you were once doing. This is really good advice for others who might be feeling similarly too!

Re: How do you keep up the good work looking after yourself when you could return to old habits?

I remind myself that it's okay to cry, it's okay to be sad and that it's okay to have a bad day or a bad week or even a bad month. I don't have to be happy or neutral all the time, it's perfectly normal to be sad sometimes. It's perfectly normal to cry.

I'll go into more detail later.

I just know, I tell myself, that I am important. There are people out there who care about me. My family cares. You here, on RO, care. I can be sad about not having any really close friends, I can think that no one really cares about me, but I know that it's wrong. I know that I'm generalising and that's it's incorrect, spurred on by my sadness.


Basically, I think the sad/bad things but I know that they are wrong. Does that make sense?

Re: How do you keep up the good work looking after yourself when you could return to old habits?

Yeah it makes sense @N1ghtW1ng

 

And you know we're hear for you and care about you heaaaaps - but I'll say it again anyway. Smiley Happy 

 

 

Re: How do you keep up the good work looking after yourself when you could return to old habits?

Hi ya @ClCl , I was just looking for a few last posts to respond to, and yours resonated wtih me, as i was just discussing that exact point that on @tornshirt's question. I feel like I'd benefit so much from joining in with the other great responses here in the discussion, if i may. So here goes! Smiley Happy

 

What do you do to help remind yourself that you are doing really well (!!!), and that you can keep going?

Engaging frequently in positive activities, setting daily goals and having a routine of loving self care.

 

What things remind you how amazing you are?

When I open my eyes in the morning, and realise how blessed I am to be livign where I am, my loving family, and precious littlies/cousins/pets in my life. And the fact that I go to bed at the end of the day, knowing I've loved myself and treated myself with respect, and even if i have made mistakes, that life is about trying again next day.

 

Hope this helps. I love everyone else's comments. This is the best forum ever to discuss youth mental health and connect with real people going through the same things.

 

Thanks so much Smiley Very Happy

 

Re: How do you keep up the good work looking after yourself when you could return to old habits?

Hiya @Mermaidgirl6 ! I agree with the previous comments by other forum members above... The more you take charge of your life, and keep negative self-talk in check, set small daily goals, and be your own 'best friend' - 

This has helped me when things crop up after getting triggered or slackening off a wee bit or just from being 'hooman' (human Man Tongue). I like @redhead 's comment too.

Re: How do you keep up the good work looking after yourself when you could return to old habits?

@evanescence I've never heard that one! Plus all the dogs I've known have have sniffed at and/or tried to eat vomit, either theirs or some other dog's, so I'm not sure how well that would go down in real life, hahah.

But does it mean that you shouldn't return to/dwell on negative things in your life? It seems like a good reminder if it is (Well, the meaning - the vomit, not so much Smiley Very Happy )