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13 Things to IMMEDIATELY Consider When You’re SPIRALING DOWNWARD (and scared)

Mental Health First Aid

It’s bound to happen sooner or later, if you’re enduring a mood or anxiety disorder. Maybe it is right now. You find yourself rapidly spiraling downward, scared, and absolutely sure it’s all over but the tumble into the abyss. Good Harry, what now?

Think about your place in existence. What do you want to do? Who do you want to be? What’s life’s meaning for you? If you have some answers, turn to them for resolve. If you don’t, what better time to work on it?

I’ve sure been there. All of the elements of the perfect psych-storm fuse, and the feeling becomes one of utter situational incompetence – and terror. You’re spiraling downward and believe, at the very least, a psych admission is imminent.

Those 13 Things to Immediately Consider

You may chuckle at the prospect of “considering” 13 things in the midst of evolving hell…

Actually, you have a point. However! Just reading the following will allow them to sink-in a bit, and you may be surprised as to how available they’ll be when the chips are down. And why not print the article and keep it close at hand – just in case?

Okay, so how ’bout some “mental health first aid?”

  1. Factor in at least a 40% margin of error when it comes to reality vs. perception. Hey, it’s an awful place to be – I get that. But you can’t forget how good we can be at catastrophizing, as well as other cognitive distortions.
  2. Assess the basics: stressors, diet, exercise, yoga/meditation, sleep, etc. When you get the results, make the adjustments.
  3. Accept the circumstances (yep, I really said that). Whether you like it or not, it’s happening. This isn’t the time for a fight. Let it evolve and you’ll manage as you can.
  4. Think about being safely tucked-in to bed. Everything would be okay, wouldn’t it? So really, nothing anatomical or biochemical is going-on. It’s only a matter of an overloaded immediate reality. That’s manageable, right?
  5. Visualize your whole self – from above – as you navigate your world. It’ll help you see your role in the great order of things, and understand you don’t dominate the set.
  6. Think about your place in existence. What do you want to do? Who do you want to be? What’s life’s meaning for you? If you have some answers, turn to them for direction and resolve. If you don’t, what better time to work on it?
  7. Don’t worry about having a “psychotic break” or “nervous breakdown?” Whatever they really are, they’re the way-exception.
  8. Recall times when your circumstances were the same or similar. And remind yourself you’re still standing, so other than feeling horrible for now, you’re going to be fine.
  9. Picture yourself actually tumbling into the abyss. Yes, imagine the very thing that terrorizes you – take things to the ultimate extreme. What happens? Is life as you knew it truly over? In the end, don’t you rise above it all?
  10.  Find someone with whom you can share what’s going on. It’s really important to express what you’re enduring – thinking and feeling. It’s all about release, processing, back-up, and maintaining social interaction.
  11. Reach-out to someone in need. Doesn’t matter how badly you feel, you can do it.
  12. Sustain forward motion. This is not the time to give-in to thoughts of checking-out of your routine. And keep an eye on isolation and excessive sleep.
  13. Never, ever, ever give-up. No matter the pain and hopelessness, you have to try again (and again).

Maybe a Poem Will Help

How to Stop DepressionOver the years, I’ve written hundreds of poems. And I can’t think of too many of them that weren’t somehow grounded in my mood and anxiety experience.

You name it – anger, frustration, love, fear, inspiration, motivation – all of the key topics have been addressed. Matter of fact, I’m putting a collection together for publication.

Well, anyway, maybe this one will make a difference just now…

I’ll Try Again

Whenever life is hurt and pain
Vision’s blurred by bitter rain
It seems all hope is surely gone
I tell myself
I must go on

At times I feel such deep despair
The burden more than I can bear
I can’t see past another day
But still I must prepare the way

In times of doubt and fainting heart
When from this world I’d choose to part
I know not what the answers are
I must believe
They’re not too far

Whenever life has got me beat
Before I take the grand defeat
I’ll rise once more amidst the rain
And swear to all
I’ll try again

Let’s Wrap It Up

Okay, so it’s bound to happen sooner or later – that scary downward spiral. Who knows? Maybe it’s an issue right now. Does it really surprise you?

But you have to understand that as abysmal as you feel, it’s just not over. Not by a long shot. You’ll rebound.

Come on, take the time to read and absorb our 13 immediate considerations. Heck, print the article and keep it close at hand, just in case.

“Good Harry, what now?” Do it…

Plenty more mood and anxiety disorder goodies to read here on Chipur. 688 titles are but a tap away.

  • Wendy Love

    Thanks for this list of reminders. With ‘bipolar memory’ I need a list like this to remind myself of things I know but have forgotten. Your list is so simple and easy to understand, simple is the opposite of bipolar disorder. I’m making a copy and also passing it on. I do appreciate the way you explain things and always with hope and positively and a dash of realism. When so many ‘depression’ blogs are downright depressing, I find yours the opposite, uplifting and positive. Thanks again.

    • Hey, Wendy Love is Back!

      Wow, thanks for the kind words. Means a lot to me, because simplicity – ease in understanding – is an ongoing primary goal here. I know how much it meant to me when I was lost in the woods. And keeping a copy is a great idea. I’ve kept an index card in my wallet for years – a quotation from Peck’s The Road Less Traveled. And I eyeball, and share, it frequently.

      So appreciate your visit(s), Wendy. And, again, thank you for your encouraging words. Take care…

      Bill

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