MC's Whispers

Whispering Silences

Archive for the tag “agitation”

Externalising the battles

The problem with keeping everything in your head and fighting your battles alone is that the stress and pressure you’re burdening yourself with will very often lead to unnecessary – and inexplicable to others – flippant remarks that cause further tension to your social relations.

What isn’t expressed, eats you up.

Our problems are usually smaller than we overthink them to be.

But if we don’t share them, we won’t easily find a solution for them.

Also part of Weekend Writing Prompt #266s

The way we feel about it all

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We tend to associate people with events, circumstances, and above all emotions. It’s the feeling they evoke when we first meet. That aura they radiate. The vibes they emit. You know you click with someone from the first instance you set eyes on each other. And your intuition is often never wrong.

The thing is, if we encounter people at a negative condition, it’s very difficult to revoke that prejudice about them that we’ve already created. We may forget the event, or what actually happened, but what remains is how it made us feel. And feelings are an important part of who we are. They affect every single thing – from our attitude, our words our perspective, to our appetite.

It’s true that the chaos and irrationality that govern our everyday lives certainly do not help calm our often inexplicable nerves and agitation. But we try. We invest effort constantly to maintain a mental serenity that will help us get through the day, the week, the month, and so forth. It’s not always easy. And we certainly require some assistance in changing the way we feel. Perhaps we think too much about it all. Because our experience of life is seamless and smooth until the moment we stop to rationalise it all, to overthink, overanalyse and often overreact about it.

Art of Living

©MCD

“If you can handle the mood swings, the unexpected rage, the moaning, the breakdowns, the crying for no reason, the hypothetical and sometimes psychotic scenarios, all those small things that tick her off… well, then you can pretty much handle anything”.

Tom was a psychotherapist. A happily married man for almost half a century now. And his favourite uncle. His advise always worked. And he knew what to do to retain calm in any relationship, to help reconciliation and bring back the good humour of any couple.

“Take her for a walk. Long ones usually help”, he smiled.

“It’s the fresh air. And the gesture that you care enough to comprehend that there is not much you can do. Heck at this state, not even she herself knows what she wants. And perhaps that is what agitates her the most”.

“Walk by the lake. The one with the windmill. She’ll stop and ponder at it. Breathing in and out as it turns, it will help her relax”.

“If you’re feeling lucky, you can even throw something clever, like ‘life is like the windmill; it goes round and round’. Or my personal favourite: ‘All the art of living lies in the fine mingling of letting go or holding on during the winds of change’.”

Multitasking alert

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People with obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) who are also into multitasking can relate to how easily it is to be constantly on edge about everything, yet also completely indifferent at the same time. It’s a paradox, indeed. But it also happens.

When you have too much to do, it is much easier to decide to do absolutely nothing.

Until that switch clicks inside you and you become determined to put things into order. That’s the OCD acting out – you get organized, and suddenly also very productive.

The problem with multitasking, however, is that you think you’re doing a lot of things at once, when in essence, you’re occupying yourself with many small things, none of which you finish. It’s like opening tens of tabs on many browsers simultaneously, but actually reading none.

This mentality of wanting to be too busy all the time has actually made us so alert, rather so on edge, that it takes the slightest of things at times to make us erupt.

We’ve created a society where we’re constantly agitated without knowing why and we lash out on the wrong people, at the wrong time, and for the wrong reasons.

What if we tried to put things into order to begin with – without opening up so many tabs? Let’s prioritise things – yes, this is also an OCD thing: lists. But there is an innate satisfaction with seeing that you’re actually getting things done. And in a much calmer and refined way.

“Multitasking makes us feel productive. Single-tasking makes us actually productive”.

Also part of Your Daily Writing Prompt

True Connections

It was on a wall she found on a random shortcut she took on her way home one day. She would do that at times, follow new routes and get lost in her own neighbourhood streets. It helped clear her mind, restore rational thinking, and create new ideas. It’s worth getting lost at times. But these words sprayed with graffiti on that wall made the most sense at the time:

In a world of algorithms, hashtags, and followers, know the true importance of human connection.

Perhaps that’s what’s driving us crazy. What is holding us permanently on edge. What has caused so much irritation and agitation around us.

The fact that we’ve essentially lost the one thing that keeps us humane: our connection.

It’s something you learn along the way. That it’s not enough to rely on physical attraction alone. Or to a few light-hearted chit-chats, and small-talk at regular get-togethers. We need people to challenge our mental limits. We want to be provoked to think more, to delve deeper into discussions that matter, debates about the world we live in. Talk that goes beyond trash TV, and our routine days. We need an attraction of minds. Because when all else fails, that’s what we’re left with.

Because it’s our minds that essentially help us get through everything. It’s the most resilient organ we have. And it’s what helps us find our way home even when we’re on paths we don’t know.

Roundabout questions

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So, what do you feel like doing tonight?

It’s a question that entails the freedom of decision, the willingness to abide by it, while also placing the ‘burden’ of finding something to do on the other person.

For indecisive people, this is a challenge.

“I don’t know, perhaps see a movie? We can either go to the cinema or order in and watch one at home”.

He smiled. She wasn’t finished. So he held back his reply a little longer.

What do you prefer?

The question-bounce-back, that returns the responsibility of choosing an activity to the original question-setter. Like a boomerang returning to the one who threw it.

If the person who initiated the conversation continues the questioning of the type, “whatever you want” or, even worse, poses another option, their indecisive interlocutor becomes lost and even more agitated by the daunting task of having to pick an entertainment. And doing something fun suddenly becomes a chore.

Let’s go out. I know you want to see the latest blockbuster and go for a stroll around town tonight”.

And just like that, peace is restored, tranquillity reigns and the smile returns to her face.

He was used to reading her mind even when she herself couldn’t.

Defusing agitation

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There are many ways to clear your head. To diminish the stress that is engulfing you and be able to breathe again a little deeper. They range from exercise, meditation, reading, writing, cooking, to spending time with friends, family and pets, even changing your house décor. But there is one thing that is underestimated in making you feel better: talking.

Keeping your thoughts and feelings locked up inside is like maintaining a time bomb inside a box and waiting for the timer to go off. The explosion will be massive. And it will hurt not just you but those around you too. That is why people suffering with depression and stress are also easily agitated and nervous. Their small and often outbursts are usually caused by the fact that they bury everything deep inside hoping they will simply dissolve. But this sooner or later diffuses into your physical system as well causing other problems.

Talking is underestimated. Because although it may not solve your problems, it is a way of defusing them. Of sharing your thoughts with someone who cares for you and understands. Someone who is there right when you need them. Someone who knows that when your rage overwhelms you the solution is not to leave you alone, but instead embrace you and hold you until calmness prevails. Someone who is willing to stand by you, to show you that you don’t have to carry your burdens alone. Someone with whom you don’t need to say much and who always knows just the right thing to say to soothe your pain and make you feel just a little bit better.

We should surround ourselves with people like that. Who when you wake up in a bad mood, won’t criticise you for it, but will tell you that every day gets better. Who prompts you to be grateful for what you have – your health and people who love you. Who gives you the encouragement you need to never let anyone get you down or make you feel like you’re not worth it. Because in the end, the only person whose opinion truly matters is your own.  

That darn Monday

i_hate_mondays_womens_dark_pajamasWhichever way you see it, Monday is the day the “work week” begins, the one that abruptly wakes you up from your Sunday slumber, the one that flinches on every fibre of your being drowning you into pessimism, depression and melancholy. It is usually on Mondays when your existential dilemma takes hold of you. When you decide to start a diet that usually only lasts until noon. That you realise that nothing truly ever is wonderful.

In many languages and traditions, Monday’s etymology means “day of the moon”. As if we needed yet another reason to go “luney”. Combine this with being a young woman, with trying to settle in and being hindered by all the constant moving around, and with it being “that time of the month” and there you have it. A hormonal, over-agitated, nervous wreck that can get ticked off with the slightest out-of-tune chirp.

It is difficult surviving Mondays. You know you have at least another four more days to go. Plus the looming threat that in just seven days you will have to go through it all yet again.

Heck, Garfield is a cat and he so ardently declares he hates Mondays. What should the rest of us say?

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