I’m definitely feeling overwhelmed.
How can I tell?
- My self-judgment — and my use of cognitive distortions (such as comparing myself to others, catastrophizing about the future, and mind-reading what other people think) — has increased.
- Joy is hiding.
- Doubt and shame are in the house.
As usual, it helps to name things.
Why am I feeling overwhelmed?
- I think I’m having a delayed reaction to my son suddenly developing a collapsed lung a few weeks ago. At the time, it was clear what had to be done to deal with things. Now, there’s time to have lots of feelings and thoughts about it.
- We are travelling overseas next month. While I love travel, I still get anxious about it.
- I’m doing too much at work (but so is everybody else there).
- I’m not so great at reaching out for help, although I’m working on it.
- Some people I really like at work have left or are leaving.
- My cat has been biting me lately, despite the fact that he and I are both charming creatures.
- It’s going to be hot and humid on July 4th (tomorrow) in the Northeastern USA. There are some people I love whom I won’t get to see that day.
- I’m working the day after July 4th, and I’m expecting to be doing a lot of work, with very few people around.
Geesh. I guess there’s a lot. And, as usual, it helps to name — and number — those things.
Because then I can say to myself, “No wonder you’re feeling overwhelmed.”
Sometimes, I think that’s the main thing I do as a therapist — witness and validate that somebody is dealing with A LOT.
It also helps to recognize next steps. Let’s take #6, above.
Or to paraphrase Henny Youngman, “Take my cat. Please.”
Just kidding (although I don’t like getting bitten in the morning when I’m getting ready for work or writing this blog.) (Actually, I don’t like getting bitten, any time. I’m funny that way.)
I’ve arranged for this charming creature to have a check-up later today and — for the first time — it’s going to be a vet who makes house calls! (Or as I’ve been calling them, house-cat-calls.) That may help resolve the biting issue, and be less stressful for all charming creatures involved.
And I’ll deal with one more item, on the list above, before sending this post out into the blog-o-sphere:
#7. Even though I will miss seeing some people I love tomorrow, I will see other people I love, too. And, most likely, I will figure out a way to see something else I adore.
I think that’s likely, don’t you?
Thanks for reading today.