Spending a couple of weeks at home before making a big move and allowing all of your behemoth life issues to overwhelm you does not sound like a situation anyone really chooses to put themselves in. Yet. I find myself here in that exact setting.
And in those past couple of weeks, as I’ve had time to breathe and absorb and try to constructively criticize my current life state, I’ve also recognized and established some good coping mechanisms, that I like to think of as “freeing.”
1. Leave my phone on Do Not Disturb. Now I only check my phone 80 times a day instead of 100. And I don’t sit and stare at my phone waiting for texts or notifications that don’t come.
2. Leave my phone at home. It’s so nice to a) not feel like I lose my phone every 5 seconds b) not feel attached at the hip to everyone at ALL times and c) having something to actually look at when I come back to my phone
3. Wearing the same outfit twice in one week. If it’s cute – who cares?
4. Writing and publishing a blog post. Get those thoughts and feelings out there for all of the internet (or the 7 friends who read your blog) to see!
5. Filing your taxes. I SWEAR. If you don’t believe me, do it and I promise you’ll not only feel a weight lift, but you’ll also feel empowered.
6. Asking for help. Not a single person has turned me down or made me feel anything other than supported, grateful, and loved.
7. Cleaning/designing my own space. Organizing all of my possessions while planning and designing my apartment from afar has been a great way to distract and focus me, while also allowing me to unceremoniously start my new chapter.
8. Singing your heart out in an empty space. To belt out your feelings via show tunes without the fear of being judged by your roommate or family member is the best therapy anyone could have.
9. Crying on a friend’s shoulder. I’m talking heart-wrenching, ugly-crying, emotion filled sobs while your friend since high school just holds you.
10. Crafting & doing your own DIY project. Preparing, painting, hammering, carrying, making, and finishing your own piece of blood, sweat, and tears. It keeps me focused, ambitious, and PROUD. Truly, you will ask every person you come across for months afterward if they’ve seen the project you just finished.
11. The Cocoon Effect: I didn’t shave, pluck, make up, polish, or coif for 5 days. It was great, but it was even better on the day that I decided to rejoin the human race and spent time on myself.
12. Stopped listening to/reading online lists that tell me how I should be feeling, what I should be like, or what things I should have done already. IT IS MY LIFE. I appreciate that those things may be true for a few people, but MAN, it is obnoxious and disheartening to read one poorly written, basic generalization after another.
The theme behind all of these activities is that I choose to put my needs, my wants, and myself foremost. Everyone copes with anxiety, stress, and the unknowns in their own way, but I’ve found it important to recognize that doing things because you want to is highly superior to what anyone suggests that you do.