A lesson for myself

I wrote this yesterday:

I found this chart doing a google search for Apathy. Am I the only one who googles my mental states to better understand them? After studying the chart, I was reminded of my crazy cycles charts from last November. I knew this was coming. Self fulfilling prophecy?  Meh. Does it matter?  Who cares. The reality is I have to change my freaking perspective. Get a new hobby. Volunteer. Get a real freaking job like everyone else. I read that the cure for apathy is competence. Competence brings relaxation, control and even flow, the highest form of self actualization. If one does nothing, they will lose motivation to do anything and unchallenged, grow stupid and apathetic. I have to do something. Quick. Before I get into a pathetic negative energy loop where I feel guilty for feeling apathy since I can really do anything if I wasn't so freaking apathetic.

Today I feel much different. It seems my apathy was actually a coping mechanism protecting me from feeling sad. There is nothing wrong with feeling sad sometimes. Feeling sad is the opposite of feeling happy and we can't fully appreciate one without the other. Sadness provides a stark contrast so that when we are happy we know it. If I went through life feeling apathetic I would never suffer sadness, which awakens my brain and forces it to check for what is wrong so that I can make improvements. So today I am sad. And I know perfectly well why. . . and I am sitting with that and dealing with it like a mature adult . . . Crying my brains out and promising myself to make a greater effort in some areas of my life. As my friend said yesterday "I don't have to like the work, but I will love the results." (she is starting the P90X DVDs again today, and while my work is more internal, it still applies) Yoga this week has been all about shoulder work and opening the heart, an area that is incredibly tight for me. I have been crying in every class but today a shit ton of emotions opened up like a damn breaking. It was great. I felt sick and had to lay down for the last half of the class. Seems I was bottling some stuff in. Its all coming out now though.

I am blogging about this because I feel like there are others that might be like me and may find comfort in knowing that they are not alone. I felt alone today for a bit. . . But I know I am not and I am not asking for anything from you, whoever reads this. It just feels good to put it all out there. I am not even teary anymore. I am going to go get myself cleaned up now. Thank you for investing for a minute.

One last thing, My yoga instructor today said, "When you are sad try not to judge yourself. Think of yourself the way you would if you found your best friend feeling sad." That said, I am giving myself a big mooshy hug, making myself a nice cup of tea, and wiping my face with a warm wash cloth while petting my hair. It looks freaking ridiculous but I would try to make my best friend laugh a little too so I guess that works!


Liv said...

Yup. I've been bawling all week, alternating between utter despair and borderline unhinged positivity. I'm in a hopeful state of mind at this particular moment. If you don't mind, I'll write you an e-mail later, as it feels weird to put some of this out there when my Mom still doesn't know what's up. But thanks for this. :-)

Anonymous said...

WOW. That quote from your yoga instructor just smacked me upside the head.

When I get sad, I tend to attack myself for feeling sad, yet I never realized I do that until reading your post. I would never scold my best friend for feeling down.

Thank you for putting yourself out here. You have so much self awareness and I honestly learn something about myself when I read your posts.

Thank you.

Anonymous said...

Yep. You are definitely not alone. I've been a big crybaby all week. So much going through my mind. Thank you for this post.

Angela said...

I am a cryer and have trained myself in the last few years to actively shove down my emotions when I begin to cry so that I can maintain my composure in front of people. I've been on the verge of crying nearly every day for the past week, and I realize that there are a lot of emotions and thoughts I haven't examined in a non-judgmental way that are bottled up and ready to explode.

Your thoughts on apathy resound with me - it being a mask, and a kind of death even, as it cripples motivation and action and change. And what your yoga instructor said was good advice. Thank you for sharing what you're learning. Your openness as you process your lessons is refreshing.

lindsey lowe said...

wow!! this is very interesting... thanks for sharing.

The Suburb Experiment said...

First, I have to tell you I recently discovered your blog and have been obsessively reading your back posts. Your fashion and openness really have resonated with me.

Gushing aside, what your yoga instructor said is AMAZING. I tend to feel bad for feeling sad because, really, my life is pretty good. But they're right, all of us feel sad sometimes and why are we so much harder on ourselves than those we love?


Georgina said...

I just wanted to say that whenever I see that you've written a new post (in my google reader) I feel glad and rush to read it straight away! I'm never disappointed. I really like your inquiring nature and the way that you write about your thoughts and feelings. I found this post particularly helpful. It made me feel more grounded and like I should be more patient with myself. Thank you.

Miss Hulk said...

Great post! Its very interesting. And thats great advice.

Alexander :) said...


he also have a few amazing books. Have fun discovering them.
Wish we could have a warm cup of tea together. One day...one day

Alexander said...

I lost a piece of my post.
Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi is the author and he's a big believer in ''the flow''

Lara said...

I have been emotional the last few days too but, mine are mainly because I am pregnant and everything makes me emotional to the extreme...whether I am happy to the extreme or sad to the extreme. But, I do understand where you are coming from. I dealt with similar feelings when I was in college. Sometimes i felt sad and alone when I was completely surrounded by friends. I got through it with tea a lot, actually. Tea and Jazz music.

dimi said...

I think you 're a lovely, smart and brave lady. We love your frozen heart from a distance. Every sane person gets these thoughts and feelings now and again and sensitive people get to scrutinize and judge themselves too hard. I'm in that group, you're obviously in that group and many more are too. (your yoga instructor is probably over it though... very wise advice!).
I hope what made you sad will go away soon.

ShelleyW said...

We are all beloved in God's eyes. I'm still learning what that means, but it is what gets me through the dark days.....my faith in God, the love of my family and hope that this isn't all there is.....

Dorit said...

I absolutely look up my mental states!

Today's investigation: compassion vs. pity

Also of interest...this NY Times article (http://tinyurl.com/self-comp) which was recommended to me by a friend regarding the idea of 'self-compassion' and the powers of it to cure what ails us (physically, mentally, etc.).

Must say, I love your life commentary posts almost more than your fashion ones (which I adore!), just sayin' ;)

Anonymous said...

You have no idea how timely this was for me.

noel said...

i'm sorry to hear that you're going through a not-so-happy day, but glad you found a release (hopefully) here. hang in there and hope things turn around for you. -noel

Renée said...

"Be not afraid of going slowly, be afraid only of standing still."

-Chinese proverb

Anonymous said...

i went to a therapist this week for the first time ever because i was feeling very anxious of a situation which may seem stupid to some. and she told me something that i had never realized and that made me feel much better: When we are sad we punish ourselves for feeling weak but we have to just let ourselves feel the emotions, even if they are not good ones. Hope you feel better soon. Sending lots of positive energy your way.

summer said...

tell your yoga instructor thanks for that quote i will be using that for myself from time to time. as well as with others if ever in need.

Amanda WG said...


I am so glad I did some blog catch up this evening...I feel like Ive been in that apathy/negative loop for the past few months, but i feel it finally beginning to break (I think the weather plays a big part for me). In the end, it seems the negativity we feel towards ourselves in response to our original bad feelings is actually the worst part. I hadnt realized that before, but now it seems so obvious!

I really appreciate that you put this all into words...it is truly a huge relief to know that we all arent alone in that :)

tavolini said...

I'm sending big gigantic hugs, sunshine, good music and good energy all your way!

RoseAG said...

It's better not to judge yourself harshly.

Unknown said...

I just discovered your blog via your adorable spring line on etsy (I have an etsy shop too and get caught up looking at yummy stuff).

You are beautiful in a Naomi Watts kind of way. We have so much in common minus the kid. I hope the best for you and will come back soon.

From what I've read, you love music and devour it like any sensible person should, check out my blog cuz I have free downloads of my favorite songs. Peace,

Unknown said...

" An unobserved life is not worth living "
I am constantly reassessing my state of being. I want to understand why i fell the way i do, so i can better deal with it.
This winter was a terrible winter for me, and when i have a tough day, i fear i'm heading back down the 'rabbit hole'.
Then after speaking with many other's, the non-stop winter, and now the world turmoil gives all of us a feeling of helplessness, i believe.

When i was told it's ok to fell wht i feel, i felt a sense of relief!
Now, if i'm down, i can choose.
To take some kind of action, or lay on the sofa and have a movie-thon!
It's my choice and my mind/body now tells me which one i should be doing. (it's pretty neat!)
Swimming against the flow of 'myself' does me no good.
Sometimes just getting dressed is enough!
it's always nice to see fashion bloggers slip outside their 'comfort zone' and be real.
I love u for doing that!

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