Posts Tagged With: anxiety

Day 2306: You’re not going to die today

“You’re not going to die today” is

  • a helpful saying for some people with anxiety,
  • not true for everybody,
  • something I wrote and left up on a giant white board during a therapy group last week,

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  • and the first part of this, now.

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After yesterday’s post, I’m wondering if that feeds into denial.

Assuming we’re not going to die today, let’s look at my other photos from yesterday:

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Here‘s “We Ain’t Gonna Die Today” by Atmosphere.

I’m wondering if you’re not going to leave a comment today.

Until the day I die, I have so much thanks for being alive and for you!

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Categories: group therapy, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , | 24 Comments

Day 2303: You Matter to Me

You matter to me,  dear readers.

It also matters to me that six years ago, I wrote a blog post titled Day 133: Maybe anxiety means that something really matters to you. It matters to me to help explain anxiety to those who matter to me.

Michael, who matters to me, was matter-of-factly wearing this t-shirt yesterday:

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“You matter to me” is a slogan at the hospital-based Primary Care Practice where I work.  Patients matter to me — that’s why I’m so happy to be part of a Patient Experience Task Force there. One of the other members of that task force, who is a patient, came up with the slogan “You matter to me.”

Here and now, who and what matters to you?

I looked at my other photos from yesterday and realized that “You matter to me” applies to all of them.

 

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It matters to me that Harley —  our white and tiger kitty  who is very shy — didn’t run away while I was taking matters (and my iPhone camera)  into my own hands yesterday.

Someone I know once said she thought she mattered less to her family than the family’s cat.  Family matters.  We all matter, whether or not we know it.

It matters to me to repeat this photo from yesterday’s post:

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Everything you think and feel matters, so consider sharing your thoughts and feelings about all these matters in a comment, below.

The musical Waitress — which includes the song “You Matter to Me” — matters to me.

 

Because you matter to me, it matters to me to express my gratitude to you.

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Categories: personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 33 Comments

Day 2281: Desperation

There’s been a lot of desperation around here lately. Are you noticing desperation where you are?

Here’s one source of my desperation: I’m wondering if I control the universe with my anxiety.    When I am anxious about something (like planning a dinner in Los Angeles, for example), things seem to go wrong.

I also have desperation about my inability to write something on this blog without using the word “thing.”

Michael has been experiencing desperation about charging his laptop — for days, he has had to anchor the charging cord in intricate ways to  get any charge.

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Yesterday, a replacement charging cord came in the mail and Michael said, “I’m going to keep that as an art installation called “Desperation.'”

Do you see desperation in my other photos from yesterday?

 

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If you want to make a peep about desperation or anything else, please comment below.

Also, Dr. Matthew Salzler at Tufts Medical Center dispersed any desperation I might have about my healing rotator cuff,  a year after my falling and tearing it.

Out of desperation about not having any new ideas of how to celebrate my son’s birthday (he’s turning 21 today!) on this blog, I’m sharing, again,  his misheard lyrics of “Louie Louie” on YouTube.

Here’s a comment from somebody who might have had some desperation looking for my son’s video until finally finding it:

Deku Tree
8 months ago
I finally found you this is a weird story so sit tight

I was in a music class in elementary school and the teacher there wanted our next song we sang to be Louie Louie he then told us a story about how the song had weird misheard lyrics and showed the class this very video to show us what the misheard lyrics were and I finally found it when I was watching a video on YouTube for weird misheard lyrics throughout history and my mind thought about this video and I thought “I know the in’s and out’s of YouTube now I’ll try to find it.” and I did yes! It wasn’t even that hard to find I was just lazy back when I was a kid and didn’t look very hard now I have liked the video from my memory’s finally.

No desperation at the end of this blog post, just gratitude for all who helped me create it and — of course! — YOU.

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Categories: group therapy, Happy Birthday!, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 16 Comments

Day 2258: Notice connections

Yesterday, in a therapy group where I notice connections among people, I did a mindfulness exercise using these mindfulness cards:

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Most of the people in the room took their time noticing the different cards and choosing one they felt a connection with.  The two people who were left-handed (including me) randomly chose a mindfulness card without looking.   I noticed that connection and then  noticed the card I had randomly pulled:

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Then, I noticed color connections between that card and my water bottle:

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I notice, here and now, that  I’ve used the word “connections” only twice before in a blog title. If you want to make connections with those older blog posts (both written in my first year of making connections on WordPress), you can connect to them here and here.  I also notice that the first blog post that popped up in my “connections” search was Day 1002: What makes anxiety worse?   Because I notice that  connections often reduce anxiety,  I wonder what connections WordPress noticed there.

I  notice connections between the word “older” (which you may notice I used in my previous paragraph) and negative judgments.  I’m especially noticing that connection two days before I turn 66.

I also notice connections between my reading the news and my anxiety getting worse, so I am careful to notice  news items that help restore and reconnect  my faith in humankind, including this one:

Quincy Police rescue tiny owl from roadside

QUINCY — It appears as if Quincy Police has its very own Dr. Dolittle.

Officer Tim Kaes helped a rescue a small saw-whet owl Tuesday night on Victory Road just before 7 p.m. This is the third owl that Kaes has helped rescue.

A person found the injured owl and flagged down a police cruiser, according to Quincy Police Sgt. Karyn Barkas. With animal control off for the night, the officer called in Kaes who Barkas said loves animals.

The owl was brought to the New England Wildlife Center in Weymouth for treatment.

New England Wildlife Center Executive Director Katrina Bergman said that Kaes had just brought in an injured hawk last week that was trapped in the Quincy Center MBTA station. She called Kaes the “slighted animal hero of the South Shore.”

Bergman said the saw-whet appeared to have been hit by a car and has a severe concussion. The small owl, common to the area, was in a bird head trauma protocol, similar to one for humans. If the animal survives its injuries it will be released back into the wild.

The Audobon Society says the bird gets its name from the call it makes, which is supposed to sound like a saw being sharpened against a whetstone. The bird is one of the smallest owl species.

I notice connections with people like Quincy officer Tim Kaes and phrases like “the slighted animal hero of the South Shore.”  I notice connections between expressed appreciation and being less slighted, so I hope Tim Kaes notices and connects to that news article.

Do you notice connections in any of my other recent photos?

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I notice connections between being near the water and feeling better.

I notice many connections in the song “Connections” by OneRepublic (who notice connections between their music and the BeatlesU2, M83and Prince).

I notice connections between gratitude and positive growth, so thanks to those who helped me notice the connections in this post and — of course! — to YOU, for all the connections you notice.

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Categories: group therapy, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 24 Comments

Day 2224: I’m very aware of the passage of time

I’m very aware of the passage of time, as I took time to express in a therapy group exercise about time.

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Are you very aware of the passage of time?  Do you believe that you have all the time you need? Do you rush and get very anxious because of time? I’m very aware that the passage of time affects everybody.

I’m very aware of the passage of time in my other photos from yesterday.

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I’m very aware that I notice more over the passage of time.  What do you notice, during this very precious time?

I’m very aware of the passage of time that’s bringing me closer to the first Friday of the month, which means it’s time for me sing a new original song at a local Open Mic.  I’m very aware that I need to choose between “Don’t Call Me” and “It’s Not Me.”

I’m very aware that I haven’t yet shared the lyrics of “It’s Not Me.” I will, after sharing this passage-of-time song:

I’m very aware of how much time passed before I found “Time Has Come Today” by the Chamber Brothers. Feel free to pass the time by sharing your favorite song about the passage of time, below.

Before any more passage of time, here are  lyrics for “It’s Not Me.”‘

It’s Not Me

by me, Ann Koplow

It’s not me resenting

the mistakes of the past.

It’s not me presenting

why our love shouldn’t last.

 

It’s not me who’s judging,

It’s not me keeping score.

It’s not me begrudging

Saying “you should do more.”

 

It’s not me who’s hurting,

It’s not me feeling bad.

It’s not me deserting

All the good things we’ve had.

 

It’s not me complaining

From dusk until dawn.

It IS me explaining

That it’s me, moving on.

© Ann Koplow, 2018

I’m very aware of the passage of time as I ask for comments and express my thanks to all  (including YOU!) who have helped me in my blogging passages, over time.

Categories: group therapy, original song, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 26 Comments

Day 2206: How to get back to sleep in the middle of the night

If, like me, you often wake up in the middle of the night and have trouble getting back to sleep, try this before you go to bed:

  1. Identify what might preoccupy your mind if you did wake up in the middle of the night (like challenging relationships, unfinished business, politics, heath issues, the holidays, ghosts of the past, the news, an upcoming event, money, food,  your inadequacies, ugliness, global warming, animals, conspiracy theories, etc.).
  2. Write down one achievable action for each one.
  3. If you can’t identify an achievable action, acknowledge that the situation is beyond your control.
  4. Go to sleep.
  5. When you wake up, remember that you’ve got plans that won’t work in the middle of the night, so there’s no need for your brain to engage.
  6. If your awake-in-the-middle-of-the-night brain comes up another issue you didn’t anticipate, put it on the list of “Things to Do Tomorrow.”
  7. Go back to sleep.

I hope none of my recent photos keep you up at night.

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Here‘s something else you can try if you can’t get back to sleep at night:

 

You could also focus on gratitude. Sincerely, gratitude always helps.

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Categories: personal growth, photojournalism, sleep | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 19 Comments

Day 2204: What the hell happened?

What the hell!  Did anybody else have a week where you asked yourself,

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“What the hell happened?”

When you’re talking to somebody on the phone and they’re suddenly not there, do you ask yourself, “What the hell happened?  Did they hang up on me?  Was it something I said? Are they angry? Did their phone lose power? Is the signal week?  Should I call back? Are they calling me back?”

What the hell happened  in these photos?

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What the hell happened in the first photo above and the last one?  First photo: We did a mindfulness exercise in a therapy group last week where we focused on a piece of paper we crumpled  and then unfolded. Last photo: a group calling themselves “Gym Class” performed Lou Reed’s “Take a Walk on the Wild Side” at an open mic last night.

What the hell happened last night when I debuted my latest original song, “I Left the House Before I Felt Ready” at that same open mic?   See for yourself:

What the hell do you think will happen if you leave a comment?

What the hell happens at the end of my blog posts?

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Categories: original song, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 29 Comments

Day 1884: Inspired

Because I am participating in an inspired group therapy conference with other inspired group therapists, I am inspired to make this blog post short today.

So, I will ask two inspired questions.

  1. What has inspired you this past week?
  2. Who has inspired you the most in your life?

I will post one inspired photo.

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And I will share one inspired video.

I am inspired by so many places and people, including YOU.

Categories: personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , | 17 Comments

Day 1766: Trapped

Yesterday morning, somebody in therapy talked about feeling trapped and how that affects anxiety.

Later in the day, we heard how people in New York City were trapped, injured, and killed in a  pedestrian pathway .

This morning, I’m reading how New Yorkers are refusing to be trapped by terror.

Here’s how we worked on feeling trapped yesterday:

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What do you do when you’re feeling trapped?

Do any of my other images relate to being trapped?

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Here‘s  the New York Halloween Parade from last night, after the terrible attack.

 

My deepest sympathy to all who suffered losses. Thanks to all who do their best to heal  every day (including you).

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Categories: personal growth, photojournalism, therapy | Tags: , , , , , , , | 20 Comments

Day 1488: Showing Up

Lately, a lot of people have been showing up for my therapy groups.  Last night, “Showing Up” showed up as a topic.

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Some people showing up last night thought that “Life is just showing up” was a variant of a quote by Woody Allen. Here’s how that quote is showing up in my Google search:

“Seventy percent of success in life is showing up.” — Woody Allen

“Eighty percent of life is showing up.” — Woody Allen

“Eighty percent of success is showing up.”  — Woody Allen

As usual, different versions of the truth are showing up.

I’ve been showing up more frequently on Twitter:

“Get over it” has never helped anyone get over anything.

There needs to be a new diagnostic code for Trump-related anxiety.

That last tweet showed up because so many people are showing up in my office with Trump-related anxiety.

New photos have been showing up on my iPhone, which means they’ll be showing up in this blog post.

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That’s Harley, showing up in the kitchen on some of my clothes. Harley’s fear of the camera is showing up less these days.

A song called “Showing Up” is showing up on YouTube:

Alex G is showing up near the ocean in that video. I wonder if I’ll be showing up near the ocean any time soon?

While I’m not sure exactly how, when, or where I’ll be showing up today, I do know I’ll be showing up at cardiac rehab at 9 AM.

What’s been showing up for you?  How have you been showing up?

I wonder if asking those questions will result in comments showing up, below.

Thanks to all who helped me create this “Showing Up” post and to you — of course! — for showing up, here and now.

Categories: group therapy, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 38 Comments

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