Thursday 7 May 2015

Amzie's Coping Toolkit

(CN: Suicide details in "deaths" link)

So today's the day! I'm actually scared about this election. After seeing the devastation caused by the tories (sky-rocketing benefit sanctions, bedroom tax, the huge rise in need for food banks, cuts, cuts & more cuts, deaths related to sanctions, abolition of ILF, the list goes on...) it terrifies me what could happen next if they stay in power.

I couldn't decide whether to write a post purely dedicated to the election. The information is everywhere (obvious statement is obvious) & people are anxious enough. I'm not sure if this post will be useful, but I decided to just write down the kind of things I might be doing to cope over the next few days. I've only managed to write this post thanks to Diazepam keeping me relatively functional/less like a big ball of anxiety and agitation.

Anyway, here goes:

Keep busy with enjoyable things, for example:
  1. Cross stitch 
  2. Colouring in
  3. Computer games (Doodle God, Sims etc. For online games, I recommend Shockwave and Newgrounds

Something to boost self esteem a bit:
  1. Do my hair/try out a new style
  2. Try a new makeup style/put on my favourite makeup
  3. Paint nails with my favourite nail polish

Something calming:
  1. Meditation (if you need a guided one, then Youtube has lots)
  2. Comforting drinks (hot chocolate, chai tea, horlicks, whatever!) 
  3. Calm music (I tend to go for meditation music/classical music/Enya)

Something cute/funny:
  1. Look for cute animal videos on Youtube (Kittens, puppies, bunnies, foxes etc)

Remember to eat:
  1. Have something easy to prepare
  2. Maybe order a takeaway (I'll be getting KFC on the way back from voting)

Remember to breathe:

Sometimes this helps me, sometimes I can't focus enough to, but I try to do breathing exercises when I feel the panic getting really hard to manage. If I remember correctly it's inhale for a count of 4, then exhale for a count of 4?

Get outside for a few minutes:

This is something I seem to want to do a lot at the moment, although I can't manage to do even little walks very often. I tend to take the recycling/bin out if it's light enough, then I can have a few minutes outside. The evening tends to be easier for this. I can try my breathing exercises again, and also try to focus on the things around me (the stars, the sound of birds, the smell of a bonfire etc). If I can get outside in the daytime, then I'll bring my phone with me and take pictures of flowers, trees, birds etc, I find focusing on nature helps a bit, even if very temporarily.

Keep in touch:

This is one I find hard to do quite often, as when I feel at my worst, I isolate myself a lot. Brains can be horrible though, and spending too much time just with my brain makes me feel very lonely, I get very self loathing and paranoid as well. Keeping in touch with friends helps remind me that people do care, I can talk to them, and I'm not really alone.

Don't overdo it!

I've immersed myself in blog posts, articles, email updates, political programmes, political tweets etc & tried so hard to squash my anxiety down and speak up when possible. It's so important to take breaks from it when you feel yourself getting overwhelmed. So having a plan for something to do/read/play/watch that has absolutely nothing to do with politics (or even the real world!) could be a good idea.

I'm sure I'll think of a load of other things after I publish this post, but these are just a few examples. It's something I'll be referring to later on today, even just to remind myself to be kind to myself. 

Anyway, take care & lots of love and hugs for everyone who needs them right now xxxxx

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