Once Upon a YouTube Binge

Mondays are typically my non-writing day.  A day of so called “research”  or rather a day of scrounging up a few edible bits to chew on for later use. My Monday looks similar to what a day of being stranded on a deserted island might look like to most. deserted island

The cast away (me) is left starving after surviving off a diet of pure coconut and decides not to eat another flake of the milky white insides of this deceiving nut.   The castaway desperately seeks an alternate food source.                coconut

searching high and low for a bit more insight on BPD.

I wanted to find something more noteworthy than just a fact feeding video (the coconut).

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Ok, that was only what I did today, I normally just live life on Mondays without scrounging for topics, but I was in the mood to do a little research today.  It was a long day of trying to understand myself better.  Looking for something that might spark my interest or provoke some deep form of thinking that I could translate into a relatable topic.  I was just browsing through loads of videos on YouTube.

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The only connection of all videos were of course those three little letters in the title; BPD.  Not true, there were blatant similarities.  One common similarity is the definition of borderline. People usually spout that off in every intro.  Which is fantastic, because if I had not been diagnosed with this disorder, I would not know of its existence.

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Most people making these videos give great information and are armed with many facts that address BPD.  I have learned the differences between a classic borderline and a quiet borderline.  I have learned that psychiatrists are more inclined to deny treatment of borderline patients.  I have learned that I have a lot of similar mannerisms to other exposed “virtual” borderlines.  I also found myself sucked into the rabbit hole and also having a faint desire to meet with these people and help them and in turn learn more about myself.

A doctor and professor from Yale University speaking on one of the videos I managed to come across today explained a great example of what the difference is between someone living with BPD compared to someone that isn’t.

the solid black line represents the working mind of a non-bpd brain. _________________________________________________

the line below represents the working mind of an individual with BPD.

_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

I think this is a great example. It is actually a viable and simple way that may be helpful to others when they try to imagine the differences.  I can still work normally most of the time, it just requires a little bit more work and mindfulness when I hit the moments that I am not a solid line.

I am letting a few other things that I found marinate until the podcast on Wednesday. I appreciate you taking the time to read the words I feel compelled to share.  Have a wonderful day.

side note- Technically it is Tuesday, so I am not posting on Monday.

Nail biting and BPD : Mental Eval Friday

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For as long as I can remember I have been a nail biter.  I even have a picture somewhere that shows me biting my toenails. Before you begin to judge, I was only 2 years old. At that age it wasn’t gross to me.  I will say it now, though… GROSS!!!  And instead of my family stopping me, they only stopped to make it a Kodak moment.  I am sitting there in some very tight fitting, 80’s styled toddler outfit, looking like some sort of chunky albino monkey chewing on my toes, bearing a huge grin on my face.  Thanks mom or grandma, whomever is to blame for the evidence we now have of my intense nail biting. This habit was obviously a self-soothing method to cope with my nervousness.  Instead of sucking my thumb, I found relief in chewing up my nails.  I just recently discovered that this is something that people with BPD suffer from as well.  (Article attached at the end of blog.)  They are also classifying people that bite their nails habitually and harmfully as OCD, labeling these individuals as having a diagnosable mental disorder.

I have had several people give their best efforts to keep me from biting my nails, the jalapeno sauce on the fingernails, and one of my aunts went as far as even trying to bribe away my bad habit.  She would say that if I could grow my nails she would pay me some hard, cold cash each time I would go to visit her with longer nails.  I was unable to grow them at that age.  Life for me at that time was far too nerve racking.  I do feel that I learned to chew my nails during intense moments to help ease my anxiety.  And then it became a horrible habit that until now I felt I was unable to break.

I can remember spending loads of money getting fake nails, and feeling better about myself almost the instant my nails were done. How does a little bit of powder, gel and polish change the way I feel about myself? I know that how we feel about ourselves on the outside can affect our mental state.  It can cause serious issues.  What could possibly be enhanced by fake nails? Why stop there, why fake lashes, fake breasts, fake tan, makeup even.  Falsifying who we are on the outside to make ourselves feel better on the inside.  Personally, the idea that I could apply beautiful nails hid the fact that I had a horrible habit of biting my nails.  It also concealed my failure with my battle of being a nervous and insecure person.  The fake nails hid those real parts of me.  I loved fake nails, and I would even pick out the polish by the name…  It had to match my mood or the persona I wanted to exude.

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I am happy to announce that my addiction to fake nails has since been rehabilitated and I have beaten my nail biting nervous habit.  I am now actually growing nails, and I can’t tell you how this small & unimportant physical feature actually empowers me.  I feel like this is something I have battled since the age of 2. I had always felt that I wouldn’t be able to beat this habit.  Making the once impossible idea of beating this bad habit, now very possible.  The major change for me that has helped me beat this habits was first simply asking myself what it is I want? Giving myself time throughout the day to care for myself. Making my mind up to be more present, to be engaged more often and less time checked out. I could spend hours adrift in my thoughts, before practicing mindfulness.  I check in with reality a lot more regularly now.  Being more intentional with my actions, and with the way I want to treat myself and others.  I don’t live in a fantasy world, and I know I create what is happening in my life, and that I am in control of what happens with my body.  Starting with growing long, beautiful nails. This is just the beginning of being 100 % real.

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Now if I could just kick my habit of Snapchat filters… I would be all real all the time. LOL!

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Happy Mother’s Day to all the super hero moms out there that do their very best for their kids!  Every day isn’t always easy, but they are all definitely worth it.

Biting nails and BPD… Read HERE

 

Nail Biting article… Read HERE

 

The Paralyzing Aspect of Anxiety… (Self-Help Saturday)

Anxiety…

The article above explains why repeated exposure to places, or events may help us manage our intense and anxiety-ridden feelings about those situations in a more confident manner.  This article supports the idea that allowing something to become habitual makes it a less stressful event.  The thing that most people do when met with a situation that creates a feeling of anxiousness or fear is to avoid it, so the feeling of vulnerability doesn’t overwhelm their senses.  Science says that one way to beat it, is to expose yourself to it, repeatedly.

I can remember being an elementary student that feared speaking at all, much less speaking in front of a classroom full of kids… I believed that this role took a very courageous individual.  I felt like all of my teachers must have been superheroes.  To be so confident, all were able to speak so freely and with so much authority.

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I felt at that age, I would never be able to speak in front of people; however, I grew up. I had to take speech, sing in choir, and do some news anchor intern stuff for a college class.

old teacherEventually, after some time, I was the person standing in front of the classroom speaking to all of those  kids.  The crazy thing here is… I still feel like that elementary student at times when I am asked to speak in front of the same amount of adults.  I know where this fear stems from and I also know that I have the ability to overcome this fear.  I will overcome this fear with more exposure.  Just remember ANXIETY is a feeling of worry, nervousness, or unease, typically about an imminent event or something with an uncertain outcome.  We control so many other feelings, why do we let anxiety control us? Consider this anxious feeling I have about public speaking being comparable to paralyzing stage fright.

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There are several things that we may be asked to do throughout our day that could awaken overwhelming anxiety.  After all, anxiety is an emotion.  We can handle the emotions that bring about good feelings, and in life we learn to avoid those that bring about bad feelings.  The trick here is to learn what causes theses overwhelming emotions, be present when you are feeling them, and if need be take your mental focus to something in the situation externally that is more pleasant than what you are feeling internally.

I know that being bitten by a poisonous snake is something I have always feared.  I don’t imagine I will go handle snakes over and over until I am milking a viper.

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This fear doesn’t halt my everyday existence.  I know that each time I take a hike up a mountain or through high grass in a field someplace there is a chance that I will come into contact with a snake.  It doesn’t control my actions, I have a healthy fear of snakes.  There are those that are controlled by the emotional leash of anxiety.  This emotional leash of anxiety is one you can choose on how you would like to respond. It shouldn’t stop you from living.  Don’t become the pet on the end of the leash of anxiety.  We should remind ourselves that we are the owner.  The one in charge.  Thoughts and emotions shouldn’t paralyze us, ever.  Everything is always so much more aesthetic in theory and so much easier to say than to act on.  As I write this, I know how hard it will be to practice.  One step at a time, I don’t plan on jumping into a pit of snakes anytime soon.

Use your time to practice controlling that emotion.  If we can release the control it has over us by exposing ourselves to the things that limit our everyday existence.  Imagine all of the confidence gained from growing through the intense emotional control.  Be over anxiety, by allowing the feeling to pass.  Practice this and very little will be able to stop you.

Do you struggle with anxiety?  What are things that has halted you in your steps?  Have you ever tried to immerse yourself into that feeling to see how long it took for the feeling to go away?  I am asking for a friend.

Have a great day!