Most things are easier said than done. “Don’t worry about things you cannot change” is a common one, and in the most part, it’s true. Of course, if a satellite the size of a bus is about to drop on your house, it is hard not to worry. Sometimes life or events makes us worry more than usual. Moving house is apparently the most stressful thing a human can do. Obviously whoever decided this hasn’t lived in our house, which we have forever named ‘Titanic”. Weddings can be stressful, jobs can be stressful and of course, the root of all evil, money, makes life incredibly stressful. Especially if you don’t have it.
These are all outside influences affecting your stress levels. Imagine if these weren’t so much outside as inside.
Let’s pretend that you have a couple of mental issues (I don’t like to say disease), one of which is ADHD. As you probably know, ADHD affects different people differently. Personally, I find that tedious, boring and repetitive jobs often get messed up as I cannot concentrate on something mind numbing. Give me a spreadsheet problem, or a general computer issue and I will work on it, both consciously and sub-consciously, until I suddenly understand the solution. This usually occurs in the shower. So you have a tendency to make errors when working.
What other issue do you have? Well how about depression? Even better, what about Bi-Polar Depression!
To explain Bi-Polar is difficult as it affects different people in varied ways. The best I can do is to quote a nursery rhyme, The Grand Old Duke of York. When I am up, I am very very up and when I am down, I am down. On the best days, I feel as if I can fly, solve any problem, fix the world. The worst days make me feel as if I just want to crawl into bed, turn off the light and sleep until I feel better. It is kind of like a roller coaster where on the top of the ride, it is sunny, warm, and you can see the nudest beach but when you ride to the bottom, it’s dark, wet, and there is a smell of old socks.
So now we have two factors, which combined can make your life, interesting to say the least. You can fall into a vicious circle of making mistake, worrying about mistake, making another mistake, worrying about that. That is in the present. What if, due to your mental well being, your confidence in both yourself and your ability to work has diminished significantly. It doesn’t become impossible, just increasingly more challenging.
So now we have the outside influences on your stress levels, the satellite that is about to turn your fine house into a large crater, and the internal battle between your various mental conditions. I say that this makes things interesting, in the same way that the ancient Chinese curse says “May you live in interesting times”.
Let’s have a look at where we are so far, in a dark place, with inner demons battling each other and you, with your humble abode about to be pan-caked. Not good really. It can always be worse though. You could have a flesh eating bacteria living in your underwear, had plastic surgery to look like Lady Gaga, or worse still, have Facebook update how it looks.
The most difficult word to say for me at least, is Help. Other people have less problem asking for it. For myself as well as some others, to ask for help from someone else is difficult. It makes you appear weak (in your mind anyway) and less of a person (again in your mind). Once you get over that though, you will find all manner of ways, and people who will help. If all journeys start with a single step, then consider saying the word Help as your first step.
At the very least, talking to someone, be it professional or not, helps a lot. Meds help as well but without talking it out, discovering what is going on internally, the meds can only help a little bit. Talking to someone also helps with external stresses too. Talking makes a difference, you just need to be able to talk.
So back to the top of this aimless piece of writing. Why worry? Rather than worrying that a satellite is going to hit your house, check with your insurance company and make sure you are covered, move your belongings out, leave the mother-in-law in (just joking), and pull up a deck chair to watch the fireworks. Yes, you will need to get a new house but that is something in your control, not out of it.
You have made a mistake at work, it is probably going to be found, you will be shouted at in front of the typing pool (do they even have them anymore?). If you know ahead of time that there is a problem or mistake about to be found, find out what you can fix before it is found, talk to those who might be able to offer advice or help and at worst, come clean and explain before the mistake is found by someone else. It will reflect better on you.
The same way that talking helps, the simple act of writing (or typing as most of us do now) helps air out ideas and let you see issues in front of you instead of drifting in your head.
So if you are in a similar place to where I have been, please know that life can be improved, you can get help (I didn’t want to use the word help but couldn’t think of a better one (see, even suggesting help is difficult for me)), and things do get better. It did for me ;)