Hello everyone and welcome to the July blog post.
I hope that this post finds all clients and followers of it's just a feeling as well as you can be and I wish you to be well on your way to understanding your anxieties and working towards removing the unhelpful and unwanted anxiety from your life.
My July blog post introduces a new concept which is designed to encourage reflective thoughts around our own self care emotionally and awareness of our emotional limits. If we are aware of our limitations then we can stay within a zone that protects us and in doing so reduce current anxiety whilst maintaining lower levels of future anxiety. The concept I have created is called ' The bucket of golden emotion beans'.
So let's get started! Let's visualise!
Each one of us is carrying on our arm a bucket. This bucket is very precious as inside is a number of golden emotion beans. The beans represent our total emotional energy however beware! they are limited because we only have so much healthy emotional energy before we deplete our supply. We are only human after all!
A depleted supply of beans signals negativity, depressive feelings, obsessive thoughts and anxiety so it is in our best interests to avoid spending all of our beans within situations that really are a waste of our energy and drive us deeper into a negative state of mind. We cannot give our beans to everything or everyone as if we did we would have nothing left ( anxiety), we have to be selective with regards to where we give them out.
The best idea is to become really clever at only spending our beans within situations that really do warrant our time, focus and energy and not to just spend without consideration.
We are often not in control of things that have happened to us or in fact things that happen around us, but we are in control of our reactions and subsequent behaviours. Maybe a good visualisation is the beans signifying our control and ability to regulate ourselves - we can alter behaviour that leads to negative patterns ( we keep our beans when needed) and we recognise our own ability to regulate our own wellbeing ( we can see our energy and know when to step back and not overspend on our emotions) We can decide where to place our emotional energy- that is our choice and we must accept responsibility for the contribution we can make to our emotional stability, our perception and outlook.
So, back to the beans! Each day we are proudly walking along with our golden bucket full of emotion beans and deciding where we might spend them. We get to choose if a person, feeling, event or situation is worthy of one of our emotion beans before we give them away.
We must pause before we spend and consider the cost to our own wellbeing of spending each bean as each time we give away a bean we deplete our supply.
So, for the benefit of our visualisation let's consider a couple of scenarios, the first where it may cause emotional energy to be depleted when it perhaps doesn't need to be and the second in which a bean may need spending.
Scenario one: You are awaiting a parcel to be delivered, you have taken time off work to make sure you do not miss delivery as it is important. Suddenly you notice that a slip has been posted through the door to tell you that the post person has attempted the delivery but missed you and therefore has gone away again with your parcel! You feel sure that the post person never knocked on the door as you had taken the day off work and were right there waiting the whole time!. This situation has now cost you all of your time that day and used a day of your holiday time, plus you still do not have your parcel!
Scenario two: Yourself and a very good supportive friend have a disagreement that threatens the friendship and the future of your relationship. This friendship is a relationship that you value very much.
Both of these scenarios have the ability to create anxiety and negative feelings to surface. Both scenarios can cause us to ruminate and use our mental and physical energy but which scenario was really worth spending a valuable bean?
So, what is the relevance of this concept being when we link it to the fact that it is described on a website dedicating support to people whom have unwanted symptoms of anxiety?
Well, let's consider anxiety is like spending emotional resilience in it's way of working. A main factor in attempts to solve anxiety are to overthink things again and again to try and find a solution, but when the subject or the situation that we are over thinking has the potential to be emotionally draining with negative responses from our mental and physical sensations then it wont help us, it will just dig us in deeper and memorise our responses/reactions to keep the negative circle turning. The part that we can take responsibility for, the part we do have power in is our own behavioural response and through my own experience with anxiety, I found that by developing my awareness of my emotional responses and taking responsibility for my part in keeping this cycle turning, meant that I could begin to make different choices that would help me more and move me towards removing my unhelpful anxiety rather that helping it to grow whilst ironically trying to protect myself.
Did scenario one mean that just because I felt angry and disappointed at that time that I should spend beans wildly for the rest of the day and beyond investing my small supply of energy wholly? or would scenario two better warrant my investment?
We get to decide where we spend our beans and invest our limited supply of emotional energy. It is our choice.
Investing only where energy is important and needed is a key skill that can be hugely beneficial in the battle with anxiety. Learning to switch off to draining situations that really may not be important enough over time to spend beans can really help to dimmish current anxiety and reduce the chances of future anxiety could be really important.
So next time you feel anxious angry or upset over a situation, first ask yourself if this is worthy of an investment with only a limited supply of beans?
Until my next blog,