What makes you happy?

Well, after a, not-so-positive recent post, I am back to brighten my blog up again with enlightenment and general Luj’ness!

It’s been a challenging couple of weeks and I’m not afraid to admit that I have them frequently, and when I do, I fall pretty damn’ hard. This is part of trying to grow, we will be knocked down multiple times, and it hurts, so so bad; we feel weak and useless alongside all the other emotions that are crashing around in our heads. What we overlook however, is how strong we are to keep trekking on, over the rocky, overgrown pathways that, at first, felt like they we’re blocking us in.

“It is far too often that we forget all the things we love”

When we are sad, down, depressed and/or struggling with the challenges of our lives, it is far too often that we forget all the things that we love, or we overlook the appreciation we once had, and we focus on negativity and damaging thoughts.

Here is an example of how we can overlook appreciation…

For example, if I am super happy and positive, and I pick up my favourite tub of ice cream, I sit and enjoy in the deliciousness and feel generally good because it makes me happy.

However, if I am feeling sad and negative, and turn to the tub of ice cream, I feel like crap, I don’t enjoy it, and I’m only eating it because, well, why not? I want it to make me feel better and eliminate my problems, which ultimately results in me feeling pretty sick and not enjoying it to its full extent. Oh, and my problems are still here!

So, while reading my trusty self help books, this time it’s, ‘Be Yourself’ by Lynda Fields, it mentioned about writing down things that makes you happy, and I thought I’d give it a go!

Make sure you are sitting quietly and grab some paper and a pen, draw a heart in the middle of the page, and start to think of the things that bring you joy, make you smile and that make you genuinely happy, then write these around that heart. Here are a few examples to start you off…

  • Memories of your childhood
  • The scent of your favourite flower
  • Playing games
  • Hiking in the woods

I have completed a rough sketch of what mine looks like to help you on your way. I found it quite useful to take 10 minutes to sit alone and complete this exercise, reminding myself of the things I love in this world, rather than just telling myself how I hate life or how I’m so low.

I thought this was a fabulous idea and I hope you do too. If you find it difficult at first, you can try writing just 1 or 2 points – the quantity here doesn’t matter, it’s purely for us to start adapting our minds to think of our positive memories and loves’ of life over the negatives.

Good luck!

With Love, Luj x

The voice inside my head

You will have to forgive me, as this isn’t my usual uplifting and helpful post, but I just need to let you in on the other side of me, the side that struggles and storms just like you maybe.

For the past week I’ve been battling with myself and the counteractive voice in my head, but it not just any voice, it’s my own, and I’m losing the battle, real, real bad.

Remember in the movies where people have the angel on one shoulder and devil on the other? That’s what it feels like. I’ve been trying to get better, doing things to keep me busy, thinking positively etc, but sometimes no matter how hard you try, the sun just doesn’t shine.

I haven’t been this low in a long time, and while I sit here writing this post, crying my eyes out, wishing I could pluck the courage up to kill myself, I struggle to see an end for me.

I see myself in the mirror, a useless, ugly, fat woman, who just needs to disappear and stop bothering people around her with her unfathomable mental issues. No one will ever understand, and I feel like I’m so stupid for even being alive. There are so many sick people out there fighting for their lives with terminal illnesses, why can’t they take my life? I can’t live like this, I’m so tired of myself and the voice in my head, making everyday so hard to get by.

I’m angered by everything, I can physically feel the anger and pain eating at me, the voice telling me I need to hurt myself, to do something so I can physically feel the pain and not just inside. I start punching myself, scratching myself so hard it makes me squeal, and insulting myself saying things I believe and know to be true.

What is wrong with me. I don’t want to be like this. I don’t want to be angry, jealous, in pain, and hurting all the time.

I just want to be able to live my life without battling against myself, why does there have to be something wrong with me?

Why do I have to be like this?

Why do I have to be around?

Why can’t I just die? Just why.

With Love, Luj x

Adapting your thoughts

While on my journey to find internal happiness, or to at least be content with with who I am, I have 
found myself purchasing self help books, of which I have taken away some good tips and mental exercises to practice. These have helped me personally to, 1. be kinder to myself, and 2. realise that life is hard, with some parts being particularly shit, however, living with this mindset is honestly pretty naff, (this is where my mind has been for the past 4 years, so I’d like to think I’m quite a pro at this negative thinking lark!)

Although I agree that these exercises do not eliminate our struggles, I am a believer in that we must try to better ourselves, I mean, who else is going to?? We are stuck in our body for a long old time, so lets live a little and cut ourselves some slack.

“Lets live a little and cut ourselves some slack.”

I could write a whole list of the exercises that I have read about and practiced here, but lets start with just one; of which I have kinda’ put a Luj-spin on…

One of the most powerful ways to alter negative beliefs is to use positive affirmati-ons (mantras)

Verbally abusing myself was an activity I used to do daily. 
Every time I would look in a mirror I would cry because of my appearance, tell myself that I was ugly and fat, that I didn’t deserve to be loved, and how I wish I could die. And, you know what, I still have these feelings now, however, I don’t say them aloud – my mind can think what it likes, sometimes I can’t control it and my emotions and depression take over, with the voice in my head beating me down daily, but not telling myself these things out loud really does make a difference.

Here are a few examples personal to me to get you started…

  • I’m broken emotionally and mentally > I am strong and have overcome my past and I’m working hard on my current state
  • I’m a failure > I’m a success
  • I don’t look like Kim Kardashian > I’m kind, caring, personable and have a wicked personality

Whatever your circumstances, you will find many mantras to alter your negative beliefs. If you feel you can’t do this just yet, then start where I did by not saying your self-abuse aloud, then slowly progress onto replacing your negative thoughts with the opposite.

Until next time, stay safe and fluffy,

With Love, Luj x

Disclaimer – Although this blog is written by myself and all experiences are unique to me, I have taken material from Lynda Fields book, ‘Weekend Confidence Coach’. I highly recommend this book to mental health sufferers, or anyone who just wants to boost their morale or emotional state.

Keeping the mind busy and mental health at bay

This evening, while feeling totally deflated and useless, have found myself slumped on the sofa for pretty much the whole night.

At the time, I have such little energy and motivation to move, or do anything, that it’s only til’ I’m getting ready for bed that the amount of time I waste feeling low, upset and depressed really becomes quantifiable.

Just like tonight. I could have finished redesigning my shelf, putting things on gumtree for sale, started making a new dress or even done something so simple as doing the washing up; with this in mind while moping around, I turned to my planner!

If your mental health makes you feel so low you just don’t want to do anything at all, then I would HIGHLY recommend buying a weekly planner and spending one evening a week to plan your chores, social plans, bubble baths or whatever your life entails! Sunday evenings is my fave time to sit and plan the week ahead!

Keeping your mind focused and busy in your free time is so useful when suffering from depression or any type of mental health. However! Lazy days are fabulous in moderation, and we all deserve them, but repeating this every day can be detrimental for our personal growth.

Top tip! Make sure to not overload your days, just plan one activity an evening to start with, such as putting some washing on, then the next day treat yourself to a bubble bath and your favourite book etc.

This way, you won’t end up with a kitchen full of dirty dishes and half painted furniture like me! Eek.

Stay fluffy; we can get through this together.

With Love, Luj x

 

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