Needing some self-compassion

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jaccat

MyPTSD Pro
Not sure what I’m asking for.

I’ve been under a lot of pressure lately, work stuff mostly, but also other things. I blew up at my manager a few days ago, yelled at him, probably went too far. I’m off now for 10 days but I’m going to have to do something about that when I go back. In the meantime I’m trying to finish a really important piece of coursework for my degree, only I can’t. I’m stuck in this nasty bit of my head where I can’t do anything without getting hijacked by the bit of me that hates myself. I keep thinking I’m starting to come out of it then no, back to thinking I‘m a worthless piece of **** that nobody likes and why am I pretending?

I haven’t seen my T since covid. We’ve been communicating by e-mail because I have issues with the phone and different issues with virtual sessions. She knows what's going on and has told me to take a break and work on self-compassion. But I’m tired of trying. Everything I do works for a bit and ends the same way. I know a big part of this is because I can’t see T, but it’s like the last few years of therapy meant nothing. Everything I’ve worked on has just disappeared.

Waiting it out isn’t working. Having the pressure of my assignment hanging over me isn’t helping, neither is how I left things at work. Going out for walks helps a bit, but it doesn’t last, but my usual way of coping is writing and that’s deserted me. I’m trying to do nice things for myself and give myself a break, but nothing’s sticking, and I’m getting perilously close to the point where I want to give up trying.

Truth is I don’t know how to like myself right now and that’s making me feel more guilty.

Anyone got any ideas?
 
Hello @jaccat - hope this isn't too late to catch up? I know you're not sure what to ask for so....

It certainly sounds like you're anxious & stressed and have had enough. The whole world pretty much sucks right imo

Observations,

Firstly, there is a lot going on now - so your perceptions are accurate. You're not making it up, or constructing your own hurdles. It's reality and in the living, it's all got so much harder. So perhaps some acceptance that there is really only so much you can do & then rather than giving up completely - stay with what you know.

but it’s like the last few years of therapy meant nothing

^Maybe a bit too much emphasis on the nothing. I'm sure if you looked again you'd find that T helped you with lots of small things along the way. For sure, it may not have prepped you for an extended period away from T, or all that's happened since.

Everything I’ve worked on has just disappeared.

^Is that really true? You sound a little depressed to me. Have you considered that depression isn't much helped by being kind to yourself. Frankly, just dragging oneself through the day is a major achievement with depression. So I wonder if your mental health has taken a dive because of real reasons that nothing much could have prepared you for?

neither is how I left things at work.

^Perhaps this is redeemable? Before you have to go to work, ring up your boss or drop by and apologise for going over the top. Even if the majority of what you've said is something you completely still believe - if you've over egged the omelette then say so and clear the air before you must re-enter the work-place. Don't leave it to fester. Be proactive? Hopefully you've made the point?

Going out for walks helps a bit, but it doesn’t last, but my usual way of coping is writing and that’s deserted me. I’m trying to do nice things for myself and give myself a break, but nothing’s sticking, and I’m getting perilously close to the point where I want to give up trying.

If you have great expectations that your usual methods of self-soothing will work completely in times when things are outrageously really big & incredibly difficult - don't be too disappointed in yourself or your progress!

Amazingly, despite everything - you're still doing really well. You're still employing the methods/tools that pull you through each day, you're still eating & functioning and hell... you're still working!! That's bloody great. So take a bow. A little bit of a pat on the back is probably well overdue.

Taking a walk and doing little things all amounts to something. But if they're not sticking then that's ok too. Consider that you'd likely be a lot worse without trying to so those tools may be working well given all of the circumstances.

Your writing might come flooding back. If you're tired, distracted & down you're brain might be fuggy.. so have a shot at drawing or doing something where you can engage your brain in auto and float away for a while. But also, give yourself limits. In other words coax yourself through this period and don't be belting yourself up for having a slump!
 

Ronin

MyPTSD Pro
Idk if this might help...

But reaally hating myself over something? I don't argue it. Because it wouldn't listen to that, isn't rational, self compassion things don't even blip to it, and even thinking of me is gonna lead to a revolting convoluted primal disgust and wishing someone made me vanish already because it fixes the problem with this gross loathesome pile of shit that hurts people by existing in the universe.

... I try to either see where my grossness is useful, aka talking to good people / people I respect just stuck with *their* I'm Abominable -

Because mess and useful is slightly more 'let it live' in my compass, so lessens the tension -

Or I ignore myself and focus the harder on the task. As in yeah... still gonna f*ck up more than the usual or at least feel I do, but that's why it's a challenge. Would be no challenge if there were no obstacles :sneaky:

And when the task is done and situation over, with whichever result, give myself at least a small high five or respecting-nod for doing it... instead of piling on me with all the reasons it whole was a cockup.

It was. And it's through. Well done.

---
Bit of a mindf*ck to live, but it can be done. :)

For better mindspace approaches, yup, @blackemerald1 is solid... Look at the pros and cons, analyze it, take it easier / give yourself space.

For yet 'hate myself less gut deep', self compassion miight help. And time itineraries and smaller bits to get moving / working on it.
 

jaccat

MyPTSD Pro
Thanks both for your replies. Not too late. I’m not as bad as I was today, but it’s changing day to day right now.

@blackemerald1 I think you’re right about the depression. It’s something I haven’t had to deal with in a long time and its return really threw me. Logically I know all I can do is go through the motions.

I do need to apologise to my boss. It won’t be fun, but despite him being wrong he didn’t deserve what I did to him. Looking back, what he was saying combined with what else was going on in my head made one big triggery subject and he’s not exactly emotionally sensitive on a normal day. I am anxious about returning to work because I’m going to be walking into yet another changed situation and I’ve no idea of knowing what that will be until I return. He didn’t know when I left.

I think I've worked out what set this off. I’ve tried my hardest to put aside all therapy stuff while I’m without T but my head has had other ideas. Stuff has been coming up which even with T would be really difficult to process. This last month it’s taken over and has been dominating my behaviour to an extent. Sorry, it’s such a difficult subject I can’t even talk about it properly. It’s made me really emotional, which led to the work thing but the work thing went so badly that the self-hate was partly a reaction to that and the depression was a way of protecting myself because it wiped everything, including any kind of connection to myself. Kind of. I’ve no idea if this makes any sense.

@Ronin I get you. That’s how I’ve always pushed through it in the past. The self-hate thing goes really deep (I think it frustrates the hell out of my T). It’s been there as long as I can remember and challenging it can lead to it getting much, much worse. This time it was stopping me doing any work, it was really powerful, and I had a deadline I had to stick to. A really important deadline as this bit of work counts towards 50% of my final grade. Which of course meant I was/am putting more pressure on myself. But pushing just resulted in me hurting myself.

I’ve done some work now. I struggle to judge myself on a normal day, and right now all I can do is accept that I’ve done what I can. Truthfully, I can’t really think about it because if I don’t do well I will never forgive myself. Which, yes I know, is the opposite of what I’m trying to do, but it’s how unreasonable my expectations on myself are. I can say that rationally but it doesn’t change anything. The chances of me being happy with any grade I get is kind of minuscule. But I feel better about it today than I did yesterday, which is something. Maybe right now that’s as good as it gets.
 
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