Tag Archives: grounding

Would You Work?

Word Press Post A Day – If money were out of the equation, would you still work? If yes, why, and how much? If not, what would you do with your free time?

If money was out of the question, I think I would work.  Maybe not a lot, but I would work.

I’m on disability right now.  In fact I haven’t worked since 2012.  Right now, I don’t even think I could work yet.

I wish I could work though.  I wish I was able to be out there, be around people, do something with my day, be productive, feel like I was contributing to society, making a difference.

At this point, even getting out to volunteer hasn’t been possible.  So I can’t feel any of those things.

My bipolar has finally stabilized quite a bit thanks to my medication, so the highs and lows are not as bad.  My borderline personality is getting better.  My PTSD and social anxiety is out of control though at this point.  Most people would brush this off as no big deal. Surely you can still work! Those that have been there understand though, or I hope they understand.

Even if money wasn’t an issue – I got no money, not a lot of money, or a ton of money — I would love to work.  I don’t think I would work a lot.   I would work enough though.  Enough to give me a routine.  A routine if what I need.  A routine is important to my life.  It grounds me.  It actually helps me, but until I can keep commitments and not get overwhelmed and handle social situations and relationships with others and not be so depressed that I miss a ton of work or attempt suicide and end up in the hospital from the overwhelming situations or depression — until then, even if a routine from work would help me — it just wouldn’t be possible.

I am signed up with my states vocational rehab.  They would be able to work with me, set me up with a job coach and put me in a program to work with me .  They are so backed up with other people though that I am on a wait list.  They are only now getting people off the list from a year ago…..

 

Grounding Techniques for Anxiety, Panic Attacks, PTSD

I have struggled with anxiety for forever!  I have PTSD and so panic attacks have come and gone in my life for a long time.  Since I began therapy to deal with the trauma specifically they have become much more frequent though.  Luckily I have an amazing therapist that has taught me some wonderful grounding techniques.

1) When you begin to feel anxious and panic, take deep breaths in and out.  Blow out longer than you breathed in.  Pick a specific color that you see in the room around you, then begin to focus on all the things you can see in the room that have that same color.  For example, if you see something that is green, look for all the other items in the room that are also the color green.  This particular technique is my favorite.  I am a very color oriented person and so this distracts my mind.  It took some practice at first, but it has become an excellent tool for me to use.

2) Again, begin to take deep breaths in and out, with the blowing out being longer than breathing in.  Begin to name the objects in the room.  Describe them, such as where you got them or who gave them to you.  Think about why it is important to you.  This one is still a bit hard for me, mainly because many times I do not have much attachment to the things in my apartment.  They were simply bought at a store that I do not remember and not many things that people gave me.  But many people have antiques or special gifts from family members, and this could possibly be very good for them to use.

3) Pick a particular object.  Use all 5 of your senses to describe it.  For example, make a cup of coffee, tea, or hot chocolate.  (This way you can enjoy it also!)  Look at it intently.  How does it look?  What is its color?  Are there swirls in it from stirring?  Is the cup warm to touch or too hot to touch?  What does it smell like? How does it taste?  Is it flavored coffee with a hint of French vanilla, or regular strong coffee?  Is it a dark chocolate or milk chocolate flavor? Do you hear anything?  Are you stirring your cup? Does the spoon clink against the glass?  Or is it simply quiet where you can only here the birds outside or the fan spinning in the room?  This is an activity the I enjoy as well.  It allows me to focus strictly on what is going on in front of me.  Although it is a bit harder to do exactly during a panic attack, I can practice it at other times to help me be more mindful and reduce anxiety on a daily basis.

4) To bring myself out of a nightmare of panic attack and back into the present moment, it has been recommend that I just simply grab a piece of ice.  Simple right?  Doesn’t sound like it will help?  I didn’t think it would do much at first.  Supposedly the change in temperature shocks your body into recognizing there is a difference and therefore coming back to the present.  So, if you go into a panicked mode, a flashback, or wake up from a nightmare and do not really know what exactly is going on – are scared and frightened and need a way to refocus… simply grabbing a piece of ice or running your hand under cold or warm (not scalding hot) water, this might help to bring you to the present moment.  Then once in this place, you can begin to practice one of the other grounding techniques.

Those are a few techniques that have helped me.  Everyone is different though and not everything that helps one person will help another.  It is important to try things out though.   If it doesn’t work the first time, don’t give up, because most times things do not work on the first time and take practice.  Talk with your therapist or doctor though to see if they have any ideas as well, as there are a multitude of grounding and mindfulness exercises out there.