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Anxious thoughts from single comments

Maybe it's because I'm in a free-fall depression lately, but it's happening to me more than usual. I used to take everything personal, then I grew out of that. But in such times when it costs me so much energy to feel safe and okay and like I can fight my circumstances...

Sometimes one negative comment, in person, online, from friend, or family or acquaintance and it sticks to my brain like glue.
I can't stop having this internal turmoil like I have to explain myself, be better, be more together, be the opposite of whatever the comment was....
It brings up so much turmoil and I have such a hard time letting things go.

Like I was so tired and ready to let myself rest for a night so I can perform well tomorrow....
And then one thing and I am wide awake and worried about my performance with work, or physique or something else, why??? I haven't gotten so attached to anxious thoughts since I did therapy (before which I took constructive comments in ballet as 'if I don't get it right I'm disappointing everyone....not gonna lie, I improved a lot, but that kind of self-hatred meant that I still never felt like I was improving). I don't have time to be an anxious wreck right now over comments. How do I hold my ground? Whether I choose not to engage or to explain. (more the not-engage part very likely)....

I don't know, how is it that one comment and I'm wide awake, filled with adrenaline, heart racing, headache full on...
I need to be better than that.
 
hard to do in the moment but i find i have to clear my filter once in awhile. I used to let everything in, straight to my self concept, from any source. Now if i realize something got in i have to be sure it wasnt something that shouldnt have got through my filter. was it from a source that really knows me? was it from a source that i dont really need to care about? was it completely invalid and can it be dismissed? So much of what gets in should have been filtered, so i take an opportunity to check the filter and make sure it us working, gonna need it, thats for sure.
 
if you figure out how a single comment can wreak such havoc in a logical brain, let me know. i don't understand it, but here i am.

for what it's worth
my two main therapy tools for this psycho weird are 1) writing it out much like you did in this post. 2) sing a song about the comment. if i can't find a song already in the juke box i carry in between my ears, i'll make one up. breathing exercise, distraction and channeling in one. yes, my friend, singing is a breathing exercise.
 
I need to be better than that.
That one comment seems kind of harsh to me. What does "better" mean? What's the reason you NEED to be better than that? I can see where it would be nice, but maybe, right now, dealing with all that you;'re dealing with, maybe you're already doing the best you can. The comment almost sounds like it's acting like a trigger. Is it?

You've been dealing with a lot and have been pretty stressed. Cut yourself a little slack, maybe?
 
I can’t get into it right now, but I wrote this a ways back, on the same subject, similar to @enough ’s filter.

I flew by the seat of my pants my whole life, as well as thrived on praise &/or competition from any quarter... Until one day I got an attagirl from someone I did not like and did not respect, while at the same time hugely disappointed & disgusted someone I liked and respected very much. It had probably happened before. That just happened to be the first time I cared. Hit me like a lead brick.

One of those reevaluate everything shifts in life. Also when I developed my own moral code, instead of following other people's (or doing whatever the f*ck I felt like at the time). It was a good thing. I was also a very, very hard thing. In part because I could no longer simply follow those I liked and respected. I had to be right with myself first. And sometimes that meant disagreeing with those I liked and respected. I still listened. I've learned to check myself hard if I'm catching flak from that quarter, just the same as getting praise from assholes, but if I'm right with it? Doesn't matter what anyone else thinks. Self respect.

I was lucky... I was in the middle of being very, very busy at the time. In a way that also let me seriously thrash out the edges and limits of that code. It wasn't until later, much later, after the cold hard left that I got sucked down into the guilt/shame/depression abyss. For the things I did, the things I didn't do, the things I wished I had done differently. Especially from before I thrashed out my own shit, but also from when I was learning, or broke with it after. Regret.

PTSD adds an extra sharp edge to that. My PTSD is also tied up in things I did, & things I didn't do. So there is some overlap that is sometimes difficult to sort, but it's a different level. Still, remorse & regret gut me. And that provides easy access* for PTSD to get wildly out of hand and the whole thing snowballs if I don't sort that shit pronto
 
I wonder if you want to look up "rational versus distorted thinking"? I believe it comes out of cognitive behavioral therapy. Things like "catastrophizing", "personalizing", "black-and-white thinking", etc.
 
I can’t get into it right now, but I wrote this a ways back, on the same subject, similar to @enough ’s filter.
Read that whole thing you wrote, kind of resonates with me. Might try to put that in use in terms of having my own judgement/code on things.

I believe it comes out of cognitive behavioral therapy. Things like "catastrophizing", "personalizing", "black-and-white thinking", etc.
I've tried to do that before with worksheet - write your thought, what should be realistic thought about that etc. and didn't really touch how I was feeling. Like I could rationally do the exercise and still couldn't break how I was feeling about it.

You've been dealing with a lot and have been pretty stressed. Cut yourself a little slack, maybe?
It is a lot and I'm beyong stress. On one hand, I'm trying, Like the last 2 days I started my days healthier, to do better. Every day I manage to work a little more.
But it seems like crumbs that won't save me when reality hits very soon.
Like there is a part of me going 'one step at a time, one habit at a time, you got this'. And then there is a part of me that is super mean, thinks I'm way too late to fix anything, gets frustrated 15min into learning something new and is lashing out because I'm scared. And currently I'm at the place I get triggered the most, so considering that I was doing okay-ish.

But right now okay-ish doesn't cut it, you know? I have to be 150% better. Not 1%.
And these 2 sides of me are in some sort of turmoil over what is right and how to cipe.
So me? Got a lot of work to do and I can't get distracted. But I'm so worn out everything gets to me.
Not sure how to relax anymore.
 
But right now okay-ish doesn't cut it, you know? I have to be 150% better. Not 1%.
I'm not sure that's really true. Not saying you're wrong, but I know I've felt that way often when feeling overwhelmed. When I feel that way, it helps to break things down into pieces. Sometimes even to write it down, so I can see what I literally HAVE to do to get to the next stage. (I have a tendency to think that I have to get to the final step all at once and usually you don't have to do that.)
 
I've tried to do that before with worksheet - write your thought, what should be realistic thought about that etc. and didn't really touch how I was feeling. Like I could rationally do the exercise and still couldn't break how I was feeling about it.
There's a DBT Exercise called "Wise mind" that I find incredible for problems that I'm stuck on. It uses both the rational and the emotional half of the brain equally. I find it yields amazing results for me.


I've found/ adapted a different worksheet, where I'll write the issue at the top and then have 2 columns, one for rational mind and one for emotional mind.

For example, it might be "doing the dishes"

My rational mind might say "It only takes 10 minutes, which is not long"
My emotional mind might say "I'm exhausted, 10 minutes feels like forever, I need a rest, the dishes can wait".

I then continue for about a quarter of an hour collecting all the rational and all the emotional things that come up in my mind on the subject, being careful to have a value-free stance, so I'm not saying that the "rational mind is right" and the "emotional mind is dumb" or something like that.

By sticking with this process for 10, 15, 20 minutes and collecting all the responses that my brain spews up... somehow giving a voice to all of my brain's "stuff" instead of it being this circular tug of war between rational/ emotional and trying to work out "who's right?"... somehow out of that process develops the "wise mind" where my brain can see both (all) sides of the issue and comes up with a more mature, wise (and often surprising) stance...
 
(I have a tendency to think that I have to get to the final step all at once and usually you don't have to do that.)
That is 1000% me. Except when I'm overwhelmed I can also write endless lists of things that need to get done.
Even on paper and out of my head- for example imagine me writing a list of 40 tasks for 1 day, most of which are several hour long.
Doesn't compute, but when I'm anxious I can't stop myself from thinking that it should.

But I need to get back to planning. For several days it's been 95% work and 5% sleep - needed to catch up to work deadline.
But I feel like in the small time I stopped planning anything (usually good system keeps the brain fog in check and mine is decent) and I'm finding all the dates and days and things to do are mashing in my head. Especially with so much work, nothing else getting done and nothing being written down. Need to make planning structure of some sort again. Until few weeks ago I was too overwhelmed and pocket planner(well, bujo really) seemed the most I can handle.
The last week so much is going on, and all I haven't done and need to handle besides work has been piling up, along with change in whether, so I need more space.
I then continue for about a quarter of an hour collecting all the rational and all the emotional things that come up in my mind on the subject, being careful to have a value-free stance, so I'm not saying that the "rational mind is right" and the "emotional mind is dumb" or something like that.
Thanks! Got back to this topic because of the new comment and got reminded of this exercise. I can really use this.
I am finishing today and tomorrow and my translation and transcription gig that is the most untriggering job I can thing of, now consists of finishing 2 more files in which there were 10 or more speakers in some restaurant or another and there was a lot of catcalling the waitress and other things like that, that feels disgusting to have to go over 3 times (transcribe-edit-translate). But saving my apartment is priority so I can't debate over doing this job just now. 99% of the time it's fine so I have to push through this last files. This worksheet might come handy.
And it's okay for you (and me) to be like that today - this sensitivity and worry. It won't last forever.
For the up mentioned reason that I wrote now- I can really use that. Work today and tomorrow will be triggering and I need to just get through it.
 
That is 1000% me. Except when I'm overwhelmed I can also write endless lists of things that need to get done.
Even on paper and out of my head- for example imagine me writing a list of 40 tasks for 1 day, most of which are several hour long.
Doesn't compute, but when I'm anxious I can't stop myself from thinking that it should.

But I need to get back to planning. For several days it's been 95% work and 5% sleep - needed to catch up to work deadline.
But I feel like in the small time I stopped planning anything (usually good system keeps the brain fog in check and mine is decent) and I'm finding all the dates and days and things to do are mashing in my head. Especially with so much work, nothing else getting done and nothing being written down. Need to make planning structure of some sort again. Until few weeks ago I was too overwhelmed and pocket planner(well, bujo really) seemed the most I can handle.
The last week so much is going on, and all I haven't done and need to handle besides work has been piling up, along with change in whether, so I need more space.

Thanks! Got back to this topic because of the new comment and got reminded of this exercise. I can really use this.
I am finishing today and tomorrow and my translation and transcription gig that is the most untriggering job I can thing of, now consists of finishing 2 more files in which there were 10 or more speakers in some restaurant or another and there was a lot of catcalling the waitress and other things like that, that feels disgusting to have to go over 3 times (transcribe-edit-translate). But saving my apartment is priority so I can't debate over doing this job just now. 99% of the time it's fine so I have to push through this last files. This worksheet might come handy.

For the up mentioned reason that I wrote now- I can really use that. Work today and tomorrow will be triggering and I need to just get through it.
I understand the part about work being triggering. I often have to read things that are difficult and it sometimes gets to me.

But, we are bringing our positive energy to the situation just by being us, even if we are one or more steps removed from it. And taking care of ourselves is always a good thing. I'm sure your transcriptions are excellent.

And I was wondering how you were . . . I'm impressed that you're putting in the time required to get past this :)
 
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