24-04-2019 08:24 PM - edited 24-04-2019 08:25 PM
The word "nurture" implies that active attention needs to be paid to help build optimism which often starts with something someone said that gave us hope, a quote we may have read, success in setting a boundary, speaking up and being heard ...
Is there something that you can share that was a "seed" of hope for you?
24-04-2019 08:38 PM
I guess you have plenty of it - I bet it wears thin at times, it is hard a times @Dec xxx
25-04-2019 08:49 AM
Just dropping this in here too ..... hoping to encourage others with it .....
I don’t keep a gratitude diary at this point either @Darcy ..... too risky as personal boundaries are not being respected regarding communications privacy, and reactivity is high ...... but the thought of having one and what I might jot down helps me to savour something that has gone well.
25-04-2019 09:57 AM
@Shaz51 mentioned the saying "this too shall pass" as something her mum says that helps maintain resilience.
29-04-2019 09:34 AM
Summarising some thoughts about Point 3:
@Faith-and-Hope mentioned that maintaining optimism during difficult periods is difficult but her faith sustains her. She also sees opportunity for new skills to be learned and that sometimes "teeth pulling" circumstances can lead to healing.
@Appleblossom reminded us not to let optimism cloud risk assessment.
@Shaz51 said the saying "it will pass" was instilled in her.
@Ali11 noted that self care was a practical outcome of being optimistic, engaging in healthier behaviours despite our loved ones clinical status.
@Dec talked about self respect and that sometimes hard decisions were involved.
@Darcy reminded us that the word "nurture" reminds us that we need to tend any small glimpses of hope we have, which will help it grow.
29-04-2019 10:20 AM
Today we move onto Point 4: Shift your focus
I am certainly someone who grabs hold of the negative first in any given situation. In the past, I would have got stuck in that place and at times used some maladaptive coping mechanisms which gave me an illusion of control. When I started to believe that the future could be better, I began to take responsibility for doing what I could to make it so. Nurturing the seed of hope that had been planted (that we could live well in spite of a mental health diagnosis) I began to count my blessings and intentionally move my focus away from the negative.
A reminder from a friend that we all have problems was the “tough love” that got me off my bum. I realised that all I was talking about was my crisis and I was over being miserable. I needed to move on and was ready to do so.
With the help of a counsellor, I began to acknowledge and validate my emotions, understand where they were coming from and take control of my responses to them and have been able to relinquish some of the survival techniques that had not served me well and let go of some things that were not mine to hold on to. Trust issues and perhaps fear of the unknown path at times still hold me back, but as I come to a position of acceptance, as I begin to better understand the concept of grace, change has ensued and I see a brighter future.
@Appleblossom and @Faith-and-Hope have both talked about journaling the positives and gratitude. For many years I kept a garden diary, when things went pear shaped both garden and diary got put on hold. As my hope began to return, I struggled to get back into the garden, but in recent times it has started to bring me joy again but diary entries are few, most of my “journaling” has been on the gardening thread in the forum. @Determined started a gratitude thread here perhaps as a bit of “homework” we could consider putting in a post of our own for mutual encouragement.
29-04-2019 11:28 AM - edited 29-04-2019 11:37 AM
Thank you @Darcy.
Patt of my struggle has been about articulation. I know I can articulate things in words quite well, but the sticking point has been in bridging, or articulating, feelings into thoughts, and then thoughts into articulated words that can bring about change in support of both the thoughts, and the feelings that inform them.
So so much happens on the feelings level that can be confusing, in that things can feel wrong, very wrong, and cloud the understanding anout how and why they are wrong. It’s like alarm bells are going off, but you can work out where the fire is, or how big it is, and what else it might be compromising.
I have been troubled by my husband’s approach to caring for our disabled daughter, and because she is so black and white in her thinking, it has taken a while to “join the dots” about why it is settling off alarm bells. I came to that undetstanding last night, and recognise that I have a responsibility to my daughter to intervene, but I am unsure how to without impacting or unbalancing other things that are just as urgent and / or important. All choices are upsetting, and to the whole family.
This is one such opportunity to stand back, and try to turn something negative into a positive breakthrough, but my emotional response today is one if bottled, unshed tears. It will all eventually pass, but it still feels like I am crawling in the desert to the side of everything that is well and good in our lives.
The undermining destructiveness of an undiagnosed mental illness is very real. I am living in one realm and fighting battles in the other.
I will work this next step out, and I articulated it last night, but I can’t control how everyone else is going to react to it. It probably needs to sit for a while, and be revisited persistently, adding more reason as we go as to why it needs to change.
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