How to Pull Yourself Together When Life Doesn’t Want to Cooperate
The last few days have been ugly (see also: challenging, ridiculous, tumultuous, gut-wrenching, and mother-effing overwhelming). Yeah, ugly pretty much sums it up.
I don’t like ugly.
I don’t like being told that I just need to stop being a crybaby and stop throwing a tantrum because I didn’t get my way.
I don’t like not being able to articulate the depth of my “wait, what the hell?” confusion properly.
I’m not just sad or just disappointed or just appalled. I’m d) all of the above.
I had to wonder if there was even a word for this abject state of disbelief. There is; it’s called aporia. Knowing this doesn’t begin to placate me not even a little bit.
But that’s not really important.
What is important is that I don’t think a lot of us are functioning very well in this state of aporia/aporia state (or however this word is supposed to be used).
A lot of us are trying to figure how to pull ourselves together enough to successfully pseudo-function. So, really, what are we supposed to do?
Start by making a list. You need to have an action plan in place for this type of emotional assault. A reference page if you will. These are the actual tasks in their actual order from a list I made when my daughter’s father and I separated. Because of my absolute Type A personality, I created Pinterest boards for each one and kept them up. I’m not even going to attempt to rationalize it.
- Take care of yourself: I [heart] this health tip, I [heart] these words
- Clean something: I [heart] this cleaning tip
- Cook something: I [heart] sandwiches, I [heart] salads, I [heart] snacks + treats
- Organize something: I [heart] a new closet, I [heart] garage organization
- Get out of the house: I [heart] a road trip, I [might] workout
- Go shopping: I [heart] clothes, I [heart] pretty things, I [have] to buy this
- If all else fails, make a good, strong drink: I [heart] a good beverage
Give yourself permission to prioritize your emotions. You have the power to decide which emotions you are capable of currently facing. It’s not about stuffing down your emotions as to avoid them; if the emotion wants to linger, then it will still be there when you finally get to it. If you decide that you are not ready to face an emotion and it dissolves into nothing without you having to address it, then good riddance.
You are in charge of what you think about, what you face, what you deal with; your emotions do not have the right to overrule this authority.
Look for the experts. Find like-minded, articulate, intelligent people with whom to share your stress. In the last five days, I’ve spent an inordinate amount of time reading the most eloquently written blogs, columns and tweets. I’m probably on information overload, but I find it oddly soothing. No, I’m not interested in reading opposing point of views; I’m not paying them any mind right now.
— Margaret Johnson (@coexistmarge) November 11, 2016
— Daveena Tauber (@ScholarStudio) November 10, 2016
— ʍodɐlʞ uǝʌǝʇS (@stevenklapow) November 10, 2016
I’d love to know how you are keeping/pulling yourself together. What are you doing to keep yourself sane when life has clearly edged toward ever-loving crazy?