Cost Of Blogging

This prompt was originally posted on Salted Caramel. She asked the question “what does blogging cost to your personal life?”

Blogging doesn’t cost me anything as I don’t have the time and money to put a lot of effort into it to attempt to make it more than it is and what I want it to be. It does still have a purpose in my life and what I enjoy doing in my free time.

When I found this post, it got me thinking how at the beginning it did cost me personally. I thought this was a great prompt and thought I would answer the questions below as well.

#CostofBlogging — Questions

1. Does it infringe upon your leisure time?

It does not. I do have a full-time job but I enjoy spending my free time writing. I don’t spend all of my free time blogging. Most is spent relaxing and watching shows. I haven’t started the new Charmed season yet.

2. Worse still, does it distract you from your work/studies ?

This would never happen. I only blog when I have nothing else to do. I am not a student anymore. I started blogging earlier this year. This is long after I finished my studies.

3. Is it taking a toll on your personal relationships ?

It did for me at first. I tried to turn everything we did into a blog post. It was always on my mind. After I took a month away to spend time with people and not thing about blogging, I realized not blogging about my relationship is the best thing. I only do when I learn something about myself. I rarely include him anymore for my benefit. I want to enjoy my relationship rather than treat it as a story for my blog.

4. Has your health suffered?

I think it has improved. I have learned new things about myself and skills to improve. It has helped me deal with getting lost in my head. It has also given me a space to be honest, myself and connect with others who share my interest.

5. Have you gained weight ?

I don’t weight myself and the doctor doesn’t tell me my weight either. My clothes all fit the same.

6. Do you ever get writer’s block?

Yes and no. I only blog when I want to and when I something to write about. This is why I quit striving for everyday. It gives me time to think about topics and do research. I don’t like only writing about what I know. I like researching and becoming knowledgeable as best I can with what I want to write about.

7. Have you ever suffered from blog related stress or blogger burn out?

I am still relatively knew so not yet. Maybe it will happen in the future.

#CostofBlogging

I did find this blog first through beckiesmentalmess.

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What is CBT?

Online-Therapy.com is an online therapy program that uses CBT to help people who are struggling mentally. Many people who are struggling don’t like the idea of leaving home. Online-Therapy.com is a great option to learn healthy ways to get back to feeling confident in yourself.

CBT stands for cognitive behavioral therapy. The approach this form of therapy takes is finding way to improve change in the life of someone who is struggling mentally. With the use of different strategies, you should be able to see life in a more positive way. From my experience, it helped to see what I perceive as a negative situation in a more positive way. Me and my therapist made a list of my worries. We then tried to see how we could make that feeling go away in that situation. Sometimes that meant walking away from everyone and stepping outside for a few minutes. She told me if I needed to that it was okay. It is still possible to go out with my family but take care of yourself at the same time.

This form of therapy has been proven to be successful with improving depression, anxiety, eating disorders and a number of other mental illnesses. People with these mental illnesses learn unhelpful ways of dealing with things due to their unhelpful way of thinking. The good thing is that this way of thinking can be changed. CBT uses the thought that people with psychological issues can learn new ways of thinking and live a normal life.

Each person mental illness is different. The strategies learned will be focused on each difficult situation you face. Someone with schizophrenia would work on trying to understand the voices they hear to better handle themselves when they hear them. Someone who has a phobia could do role playing to better understand and find ways to face their fears.

Online-Therapy.com charges the same amount a week as if you were going to see a therapist in person. They offer online journaling, worksheets, videos, 30 minutes of live chatting with your therapist, communicate outside of live chats, activity plan and more.

I love the daily journal feature. It helps me stick to my goal and find light in every day. It also helps me track my mood and find out how I can improve it.

With this affiliate link, you can try it as well to see if it works for you too.

Weekly Update

During the end of my birthday vacation, I went to a wedding convention with some family. A couple days later, I had to go back to work. Getting back into the working routine was difficult.

My sisters boyfriend proposed to her while they were away on a fishing vacation. She said she knew it was going to happen but wasn’t sure if he would propose on that trip. Since that day, she has been talking nonstop about how she should plan her wedding and what date. She is excited and I have no feelings about it. She did ask me to be her brides maid. As her sister, I said I would.

Because she has been looking up everything wedding related, she got an Instagram ad for a wedding convention. The tickets were free. She sent it to me to sign up for too. She wanted me, mom and her fiancé to go. When it came time for the event, I started to feel anxious and didn’t see a point in me going.

I wouldn’t be the least bit helpful in anything. I have no interest or care that she is engaged. I didn’t like the idea of being around people interested in weddings or just being around people in general.

When the day came, I didn’t have anything better. I told my sister I would go if she came to pick me up. She didn’t want to at first because my place was out of the way to get there. It would take them an extra 30 minutes to get there otherwise. She eventually decided to come pick me up. Her fiancé drove us all there to the convention center.

The convention center turned out to be the same place where me and my sister went to see One Direction and 5 Seconds of Summer in concert. Getting to relive those memories with her was nice.

The wedding convention was a bunch of places from the cities with stands to catch peoples attention. Some were of dresses, bars, tableware, flowers, wedding venues, cake and more. I do want to get married to my boyfriend at some point. I don’t want any kind of extravagant wedding though. It just isn’t me and I don’t do well with people.

There was mostly women there. The men just followed and had no interest in anything. This is exactly what my sisters fiancé did. He didn’t check out any stand. He only went up to the ones that had free food samples. It must be normal for men to not care for the wedding. Only the women care about it. I could be wrong though.

I did enjoy trying the free food too. I also got free drinking glasses with an alcohol recipe inside. I also snagged some chapstick and goldfish crackers.

Because my mom was sick on the day we went out for my birthday, she decided to take me out to eat after the wedding convention. We went to Perkins. I had the tangler burger. It was delicious. My sister decided on the same burger as me. We both ate it all. My mom was still recovering from being sick. She got a blt sandwich. She didn’t finish all her fries. My sisters boyfriend doesn’t like Perkins but he wasn’t hungry.

After my 9 days of vacation and being back to working, I have been tired. I have to wake up on a schedule and don’t plenty of time for anything throughout the day anymore. It has made me lazy. This is why I haven’t posted in a week. I am now back into my routine and feel ready to start posting again. I do posts already planned to write.

How have you guys been?

The Effects of Hiding Your Emotions

Being able to show our emotions is what makes us human. There aren’t any animals that have the ability to show on their faces how they are feeling. Anger, sadness and scared can only be shown in dogs based on how their bodies are reacting or how they sound. They shake when scared and growl when mad. When we are happy, we smile and laugh. When we are mad, our eyebrows narrow and our forehead wrinkles. Our skin reddens when we are embarrassed.

I am not proud of this but I have developed the ability to turn off how I feel at times when I don’t want to show my feelings. If my boyfriend asks me to buy us food, I don’t show I feel about him. My love for him turns off and I don’t want to buy food for us to eat together. If he needs my help or support, my feelings sometimes turn off and I won’t offer it. It’s not because I don’t want to or don’t love him, I just sometimes get scared to express and show how I feel.

In social situations, I turn off everything to the point they can’t read me. Doing this does help me feel calmer but it doesn’t give other people a good impression him. It makes me come off as a bad person because my relaxed expression doesn’t look kind. I am actually the opposite of how they see me. I am friendly and a good person.

In situations where people think I am relaxed, I am actually anxious on the inside. Turning my emotions off causes them to build up on the inside. My body sweats, my hearts races, my muscles tighten and shake and my mind races. Sometimes this can even turn into a panic attack. This is because my attempt at hiding how scared I am builds up into something worse. I end up with more negative thoughts as I try to process what happened. I feel like a failure with people.

I’m worthless and should hide away at home. Nobody will ever want to get to know me or be my friend.

Each time I have this same reaction. I end up falling into a deep depression because I don’t know how to handle how I feel afterwards. All I know is I am scared.

Growing up, I was never taught how to handle my emotions and how to understand how to feel. I was very closed off with my family when they asked me as well. Before I became depressed, emotions were never talked about. This could be why in high school I refused to talk to my family when they asked. I feel like if I was in elementary school and learning how to face the challenges I was back then with positive words that would shut off my emotions as much.

Negative emotions come from our bodies defending themselves. If we learn to turn them into something positive at a young age, we would have better mental health as we get older.

This is why we are sensitive to anything that can be harmful. We are taught that negative comments or negative situations can’t be seen as a good thing. When you are learning to play a sport at a young age, any guidance you receive to learn the game is considered harmful. They only give you positive comments on your play. When you continue the sport at an older age and start to receive negative comments, you take it as you are not good enough and your self-esteem drops.

There would less anxiety, depression and suicides if we were taught to taught to handle stressful situations emotionally rather than told to just keep pushing through them to get to a better place.

Working On Us Week 17

I haven’t done one of these before on my blog. This week I though I would give this a try. This prompt first appeared on Beckies Mental Mess.

Below is my response to her prompt questions.

Do you suffer from SAD?

I don’t have SAD but I do become more closed off socially in the winter months. I don’t like going anywhere or doing anything because of the snow and ice. This does cause me to be more tired and depressed. There I things I should do and look forward to but I don’t because I become more worried about the horrible weather.

Other than the few examples I listed above, do you suffer from any additional symptoms of depression during seasonal changes, whether it be in the Winter or Summer?

I don’t suffer from any different symptoms than I normally do on a day where I feel depressed or anxious. I feel tired and everything feels like a chore. I hate myself. This is best way I can think to describe it

What sort of treatment plan, if any, do you seek in order to cope with SAD?

I don’t seek any treatment for my mental health anymore. I did used to take medication years ago and went back to therapy late last year. I currently don’t do those things anymore. I do try to use what I learned to help myself when I feel like I need it and can get myself to do them.

Medications, are they altered in any way during SAD?

No. Because I don’t take any.

Do you seek additional therapy during SAD?

Not at the moment. Driving an hour to my favorite therapist got to be too much and expensive. If I could, I would go back. I don’t like the idea of starting over with a therapist who is closer to me.

My Birthday Vacation

September 30th was my golden birthday. The last few days have been very relaxing. Especially with not having to go into work.

That day I spent relaxing and watching a Diabolik Lover. It was a good show. The episodes were 15 minutes long. I was able to finish it quickly. I also have been watching a lot of YouTube. Watching Markiplier play a horror game and Game Grumps playing a funny anime game have been fun.

On Wednesday, I got to together with my family to eat at a Chinese restaurant. I got to eat all of my favorite chicken, ramen noodles and more. It was delicious. My dad, grandparents and sister were there. My called me the morning of to say she couldn’t make it because she was sick. I was upset about that because I wanted everyone to be there.

My grandma gave me a leaf shaped bowel, Swedish fish and money as a birthday gift. My parents also gave me money. I am thinking about using the money to buy shelf’s to put decorations on. I have a book shelf with books, fairies, dragons and many other things on. With the shelf is, you can’t really see the things I have on it. It is great for books though.

On Thursday morning, I was supposed to go to court to testify. I was very nervous about it because I would have to talk about the time I was sexually assaulted in front of people. It isn’t something I like telling people. I have kept having to do this to myself for this reason and because I don’t like the subject at all.

I never received any further information about where to go and what to do. That morning I called to find out that I wouldn’t need to testify. They wouldn’t need for anything at all anymore. I was relieved to hear that. I do hope everything worked out okay for the girl.

Other than that, I have been able to spend extra time with my boyfriend and enjoying not having to worry about waking up early for work.

We Can Change Our Personalities

Many of us with a mental illness wish there was something about our personality we can change. If you don’t have a mental illness, you also wish there was something about yourself you could change. You may want to be more driven, more kind, more outgoing and less shy.

There are things about my personality I wish I could change. I would like to be less shy, have a more positive energy, be more driven and less selfish. I have a habit of shutting off my emotions. This can make me think of only myself and not care at all about anyone else or what I really want. Talking to people is the hardest thing for me to do. If anyone wants to talk to me, it is rare for me to keep the conversation going. If I manage to keep it going, I experience anxiety after. Most of my relaxing time is spent freaking out over something and being in a negative place.

New research has been published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology that says it is possible to change our personality. Nathan Hudson of Southern Methodist University put together a group of researchers. They recruited 377 undergraduate students from the University of Illinois and Michigan State University. They each took a personality test and chose which of the five core dimension of personality they wanted to change.

Each week, for 15 weeks, they received challenges of various difficulty that pushed them to do a task outside of what they normally would do. After each challenge, they retook the personality test. This helped the researchers see personality changes in extraversion, conscientiousness, agreeableness and emotional stability. There were changes in the people who chose openness to experiences.

The results showed that openness to experiences people became less open. They also discovered the difficulty of the task had zero affect on the results. The main reason people saw a change in their personality was because of the risks they took with each challenge.

If I want to be less shy, I need to set a goal to speak to so many people in a day. I have to hold a conversation with each person daily. I have to set a goal to remind myself to not give up and finish what I start. I don’t give up until I finish with a set number of days or weeks. I have to make sure to turn each thing I see as negative into something positive so I improve my mood. I should set a goal to put myself in the other persons shoes when making a decision so I don’t feel as shut down. This might help me feel more to make the decision that makes me and the other person happy.

To reach any goal requires taking risks and pushing what makes you uncomfortable or failure. I can how this theory can apply to more than just achieving a life goal of finishing college or getting your dream job.

What do you think about this study? Do you believe that taking risks can change your personality?