Anxious Much?

I AM TIRED!

Not physically tired, but…mentally drained. I am such a Type A person and sometimes this can be exhausting. Who am I kidding lol, this can be MESSY. I love who I am. I just need to establish better boundaries for my self-care.

Having a Type A personality means that I have a tendency to remind myself of the time urgency with pretty much everything. This includes big tasks and even those smaller ones that don’t seem to matter. Funny because I know this about myself and I also forget this very fact about myself as well.

So, on the days where I feel a little extra winded and determined to complete my “forever list”, I don’t realize that I create this madness in my head until it’s too late. *slaps forehead*

Something that I have changed to counter this madness is to be intentional about quieting my mind. This process will look different for every person. But for me, I acknowledge my own weaknesses in this area. I’ve honestly tried different ways on becoming less anxious in my thoughts, and I have been successful…but this hasn’t lasted longer than maybe a few days. I’m not capable of taking on such a task on my own, so I ask God to help me here. I have to pray for peace of mind and the ability NOT to go crazy from my self-made issues.

What is your personality type and how has this impacted your level of stress?

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I refuse to be so overcome by my lists that I miss out on what’s presently more important. Like enjoying my family. Recently I’ve seen myself stop errands midway and just walk away, even for just a few hours or to pick them back up the next day. What an impact this has made on my sanity!

Trust me, this has been more difficult than it seems. For those of us who live by calendars, and to do lists…you know what taking a break means. Your mind may still not shut off. Even if you physically remove yourself from a task, you may still be talking to yourself about all that is left for you to do..and how you’re going to get it done.

Don’t get too hard on yourself because there is still hope!

Since I have temporarily transitioned from an office job to an at home job in caring for my little one, I’ve had to adjust my schedule completely from a set in stone calendar of responsibilities to allowing myself to be physically and emotionally present for myself and for my family. I’ve made the change because I’ve seen how challenging I’ve made things for myself with lists, and lists, and lists! Did I mention how unnecessary many of these were?!

I take comfort in meditating on reminders such as these:

“That is why I tell you not to worry about everyday life—whether you have enough food and drink, or enough clothes to wear. Isn’t life more than food, and your body more than clothing? Can all your worries add a single moment to your life” ? Matthew 6:25 & 27

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When I actually took a step back and allowed God to take control of my anxious mind and give me the opportunity to be present emotionally and physically for my family…I have truly been blessed! My days are so much lighter. I let go of things that I would normally hold onto for weeks. I smile more just because and I am genuinely happier. We all still have a ton of things to get done, so I’m not completely pushing off these responsibilities. What I AM doing is giving myself the opportunity to “take a break”, when before I would say this but this wasn’t actually the case. I want to be able to forgive myself for trying to do it all…ALL of the time!

My hope is that we all learn how to breathe a little easier and take in those moments that we used to ignore or may not even have noticed because we were knee-deep in our running tab of errands and things to get done before the days end. If you’re willing…allowing your prayers and your faith to shift your worries to be more manageable if this is something that you haven’t tried.

Until Next Time 🙂

XOXO ~Sharece

@befree2love

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Understanding Empathy

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Finding yourself stuck in a cycle of negativity, or similar arguments with someone you love?

Our relationships can suffer because we minimize one anothers feelings.  Even if doing so was not our intention.  Many of us lack the ability to see another persons perspective.  Often times we are too focused on our own feelings and experiences, that we completely miss the mark.  We miss opportunities to connect with others, because we are being “selfish”, or at least coming across as such.

More and more, I’m noticing that much of what we communicate tends to get lost in translation.  We attack one another simply because we believe we were wronged in some way.  The worst part is that when these messages are misunderstood, many of us fail to gain clarification on the intended message.  As a result, maybe you spend the next day replaying that conversation in your head.  Man, have I been there one too many times! I admit that I have let my imagination run wild, without taking a moment to calm those nasty convos in my head.

Then, when I am able to confront the “issue”, I often learn that I was wrong.  So, realistically I’ve spent an unimaginable amount of time dwelling over things that could have been cleared up if I was able to understand the other’s interpretation without having my feelings block my judgement.

Psychotherapist Cindy Sigal, AMFT (Relationshipshttp://psychcentral.com/blog/archives/2014/06/08/the-power-of-empathy-in-romantic-relationships-how-to-enhance-it/) has a wonderful perspective on how to improve empathy in our relationships.

What is EMPATHY?

Cindy discussed three different types: Cognitive (we don’t lose sight of our feelings).  Here we are able to recognize others feelings without experiencing these same feelings ourselves.

Emotional (sharing feelings with your partner or others). If your hurting, I’m hurting. If you’re angry, I’m angry too.

Compassionate ( a whole person response (changing our own behavior).  With this type, we realize what our partner may be experiencing, and actively alter our behavior to increase positive feelings.  For example, you may know that today wasn’t a good day for the other person.  Instead of adding onto their current stress load, you do something different.  You may say kind words, or pick up their favorite snack.

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In addition to understanding the different types of empathy, it will also be helpful to identifying the Road Blocks from experiencing empathy.

-Getting sucked into our own perspectives (how we are feeling vs our partner): From my experiences with others including what I’ve been through personally, is that many disputes/disagreements occur when you feel the other person isn’t listening, or feel as though they do not care.  Many of us become stuck with defending ourselves when communicating, because for some reason we feel attacked.  What can possibly be resolved if both of you aren’t even attempting to understand the others perspective?  You’d don’t have to agree with them, but this will help you grain clarity.  I’m definitely still a work in progress!

-Focusing on negatives: Can you imagine a lifetime full of complaints, with no motivation to make any positive changes? #exhausting. We all have our days of picking out the “wrongs”, but what about trying to clear a tiny circle off of that filthy mirror from time to time.  This will definitely keep your relationships “stuck” in the helpless zone. Try finding at least one positive for every 3 negatives.  This may be challenging if your thinking has already been shaped by constant negative messages, but your situation is not hopeless. Train yourself to think differently…it’s never too late to learn something new. 🙂

-Treat ourselves how we would treat others: I admit that am not the best example of this.  I allow others the ability to make mistakes, and offer them my best advice and encouraging words.  But, I don’t always allow myself these same luxuries.  Yes, I want to push myself, and learn from past experiences.  How will this be possible if I won’t even give myself the opportunity to reflect on these roadblocks?

I hope that today is a wonderful day for everyone, and we all are able to improve our Empathy!

What contributes to your overall satisfaction in your romantic relationships ( past, present, or future)?

-XOXO

FreeBryd

Photo #1:http://www.canstockphoto.com/

Photo #2: http://www.lifetimeloveaffair.com/

Inspiration//Make Your Dreams Become Your Reality

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Have you ever felt extremely unproductive before?  Well, that has been the story of my life for the past few days! I am so guilty lol.  I’ve been binge watching a series on Hulu (Devious Maids)! So much drama…but it’s also extremely addicting! This week, I’ve failed to go to the gym or update my blog as often as I’d planned. :-/ Needless to say, I couldn’t help but to realize how easy it is to fall into a comfortable routine, and forget about achieving your dreams.

In the past, I have always dreamed about doing more with my life, but never felt any real sense of urgency when considering the response to this question.  I had absolutely no clue how to begin preparing a life for myself, where my overall level of happiness scored close to a 10 on a Likert scale.

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Should I go back to school? What should I major in? Where will I find a job? So many questions to consider!

Last month I wrote a post specifically to address these concerns (https://freebryd.wordpress.com/2015/07/21/what-i-want-to-do-with-the-rest-of-my-life/).  I became so motivated to take off running with enough energy to run a marathon! I’m still very excited to continue pursuing what I love most: writing, and helping others build healthy relationships.

What I am saying is that I don’t want to lose sight on what I’ve promised myself I’d accomplish within these next few years.  I do worry that I’ll become sucked into the swift current of life, without giving my all to what I’ve planned for myself.  But, I can’t let that happen.  I need to remind myself daily what it is that I want out of life.

At this time, I do not have a vision board that I can refer to like I’ve heard others speak about.  Now I can honestly say that I understand the importance of creating something to this effect.  During these past few days, it was so easy for me to say, “I’ll do it later”, because I did not have anything in place to continuously remind me of my aspirations.  I absolutely need this!

I have a really long-winded way of saying don’t give up.  Don’t give up on your plans, simply because “something comes up”.  It is alright to take a break…but try your best not to lose sight on the bigger picture. Luckily, I have family and friends in my corner who are able to snap me back into reality. But honestly, this is not their responsibility.

I have to want more for myself, and I do.  I just need to find ways to encourage me not to lose sight of this!

Here is what I plan to do:

  • Create a detailed vision board (so I have no questions about what I want my future to look like)
  • Speak about my goals to others (the more I discuss this, the more I will speak this into existence)
  • Make a list of small steps that will help me reach my goals (less overwhelming for me to target smaller tasks first)
  • Listen to the advice I would give to others (not to be so hard on myself…I will make mistakes and have days where I want to give up–>but get back on track asap)

These little gems will help to keep me on the right path. Take a break, go on vacation, binge watch your favorite tv series.  We all need days such as these to help us recharge.  Just remember that sooner or later you’ll need to get back to what you’ve started.

What do you use to help motivate and remind you to continue pursuing your dreams?

~XOXO

FreeBryd

Photo Credit #1: http://jaytheanalyst.com/

Photo Credit#2: http://weightlossandtraining.com/

Photo Credit #3: http://www.in-pharmatechnologist.com/