Tag Archives: routine

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…..

 

Keeping a Routine – Essential but Oh So Hard!

Staying on a routine is incredibly hard for me, but it is one of the most important things to keeping me mentally healthy!!!

I am on disability and so I literally have almost nothing to do all day.  I try so hard to keep a routine.  I try to plan things to do – get up, brush my teeth, take a shower, ummm what else? What else is there to do?  I can’t spend money, I have no money.  I have no where to go.  I really don’t know anyone.  The people I do know are from my support group and they live like an hour away.  That’s a no go.  Hmm, what else is there.  Sit around, read, write, draw paint.  Walk.  Ok, but I can do those whenever I want.  Sleep.  Ruminate on the past.  Have a flashback, a panic attack.  Cry.  Ruminate some more.  Oooh hi anxiety, you are back for a visit! 

The most stable I ever was, was when I was in the state hospital for 6 months.  I had a set schedule, wake up, get ready, breakfast, community meeting, go to groups all day long (all of which I really enjoyed and learned from), made lots of friends, had lunch in between it all, came back for dinner, had option groups (fun stuff like cooking class, movie club, etc), and then we could stay up as late as we wanted to watch tv, read, etc as long as we woke up the next morning on time.  It was perfect for me.  I was held accountable to a schedule. I was expected to be somewhere at a certain time and I had consequences for not being there.  There was really no stress related to it though, if it didn’t happen, there was a consequence, (loss of off unit privileges etc) but I could talk through what happened with the therapists. 

My problem here is the stress of getting a job completely overwhelms me.  I will self sabotage because of the anxiety.  I have attempted suicide on multiple occasions before a job interview.  If I even get a job I end up getting so stressed out I just quit the job or call in sick all the time.  And now, I cannot even get an interview to a job because I have no work history for the last 2 years.  So I cannot even try to see how I would do. 

I have worked with my psychiatrist and therapist to discuss getting on a routine at home on me own – wake up, daily hygiene, daily walk, spend time working on my art, call someone each day (socialization of some time since I isolate), no electronics for more than 4 hours a day (not working so much since I started this blog!), and then a bedtime routine.  As much as I tried to do that, I just cant stick to it.  I am not accountable to anyone but myself and there are no consequences if I don’t do it.  If I had to be somewhere at a certain time to meet someone, I can follow through with that – therapy, NAMI group, those I can do.  But spend 2 hours on art, sure I will do that when I feel like it.  Call someone, I freak out calling people, so that will happen when I decide it happens – unless someone says I owe them a lot of money and I know that my bank account depends on it cause I cant afford it and I know it is a mistake.  Routines just don’t work for me!

I know they are essential to my mental health though.  I have talked to a lot of other people from my support groups and have heard it from many other therapists over my years in counseling and they all agree, routines make things better.  They help you stay focused and busy so you have less time to think about the negatives.  They keep you from ruminating on the past or what is going on. 

Do you have a routine? How do you keep your routine?  Do you feel like it helps with your mental health?