Craft For The Soul Nice Life Reminders Pip-Life

What to do when your feels go haywire because times are tough

Weird Science

So. If you have been reading for a while, you might know that things have been a bit fraught for me of late. Despite my chipper exterior blog feels, my life has turned upside down over the last year or more and I’ve been navigating some new things, as this has happened.

I have also been navigating some OLD things – anxiety and depression. But they’ve combined their superpowers in different ways since things got a bit lot crap and I’ve frankly been impressed with their versatility. Go me! I can do hocus pocus things I have never done before.

Before you ask. I am going to be a-okay. I don’t want you to worry. This isn’t about that. Nope. But thanks!

But what I do want is to share some of this impressive versatility aka trickiness, because HECK KNOWS, you might feel like this too, some day.

What happened to me – and has thankfully been happening less – is that my feeling wires got crossed as I tried to deal with hard things.

Instead of feelings being pure and easy to understand, my emoshes were more like something from the film Weird Science (minus sexism, sassy outfits and Anthony Michael Hall, dammit.) Or maybe like some climactic time-travelling magic bits from Back To The Future (sans high tops and fancy car, which I’m strangely okay with.)

For instance:

Instead of feeling challenged when plans changed without warning or didn’t look like I’d expected – I’d feel PANIC. Which can also look like ANGER, to the untrained eye.

Instead of feeling concerned when things got tricky – I’d feel PANIC. Which can sometimes look like ANGER, to the untrained eye.

Instead of feeling, analytical and problem solve-y when things got worrying – I’d feel PANIC! Which can sometimes look like ANGER, to the untrained eye.

That’s a lot of PANIC that looks like ANGER. Especially when I wasn’t angry.

Luckily, I quickly spotted the same sort of thing in people who are going through similar stuff – and I realised it was an ACTUAL THING and I felt better.

Okay, not better for people’s panic-y suffering, but better that it’s a way we process things aka misprocess things aka short circuit, some of the time.

I also noticed that PANIC can sometimes just turn into a lot of sobbing, which is excellently cathartic if you realise that it won’t go on forever and the tears eventually get bored and want to do something else beside bother your adorable cheeks.

So that’s it really. I just wanted to talk about how anxiety and panic can sometimes look a lot like anger/sobbing and that is a HUMAN THING. Angry people are not always angry, y’all. They are sometimes… panicked and quietly sh*ting themselves due to other things!

Some of us feel this more deeply and terribly than others (if that is YOU, maybe pop over here? Even if that isn’t you, pop over there.)

A lot of us don’t talk about how the panic can shapeshift into feelings that are harder to unravel.

I am lucky to be a writer, because I scrawl or type my way out of this stuff and it helps me to feel a lot better and see trusty patterns in behaviour that help me to get out of the fug.

But if YOU are not a writer, may I suggest you STILL write down your panics and angry bits and sobs – and how you feel when they happen. And what sparked them. And how your body felt when this all happened. It’s helpful to me and gosh it might help you too. Write, write, write. However messy that stuff is, just get it out and down.

Because it might help. Maybe your adorable cheeks will thus be less damp?

Maybe the feels that SEEM like anger will show themselves as just unsettled and upset, instead?

Maybe you can change the labels on those suckers and expose them for what they really are? Anxiety and fear and a general feeling of ‘what the heck is happening and please make it stop?’

Honestly, IT’S WORTH A SHOT!!

Thanks for reading.

Smooches.

Your pal, Pip

x

PS – I will be okay! Promise! Not even kidding.

10 Comments

  • Reply
    Anne
    November 4, 2017 at 1:01 PM

    When my sister died in a car accident I found writing really helped me. I jotted down all my thoughts and feelings. Now I find that I only write in my journal when I am feeling flat.

    Good to hear that you are doing ok!

  • Reply
    Maggie Mason
    November 2, 2017 at 4:49 AM

    I didn’t realize/understand what was happening. I’m so glad you linked back! I’ve been through my own version of this, and it was the hardest thing I’ve dealt with in a life full-up with dealing. I’m so sorry you have to go through it, I would hit the fast forward for you if I could. I feel good again, but there was a time when it felt like I wouldn’t again. Waiting for time to pass until the grief subsides is frustrating, awful stuff. This sucks. Internet hug.

  • Reply
    Schmo
    November 1, 2017 at 8:22 PM

    Hey Pip,
    Sorry to read about your panic.
    The lovely man I’m married to started panic attacks after a long stint in hospital.
    Years ago. He found this womans books easy to read (not to wordy or busy during an attack) and we have gifted copies to our Dentist, our childrens’ Speech Therapist, a good friend when she became anew Mum, and my besties teenage son. All have agreed having something on hand to read, that’s not too busy or wordy, has helped. I hope it can help you and others …
    http://www.bevaisbettartofanxiety.com/books.html

  • Reply
    Sarah Cox
    November 1, 2017 at 11:47 AM

    I love this post a lot. And I identify, and I hadn’t put the panic with anger, so that was really helpful, and helpful for my poor family too. Fear has such a lot to answer for, no? I am sorry you’ve had a tough time Pip. Even though life happens, it is never nice to have to walk through these times, so know I am wishing you a much better few months ahead as you forge ahead. Much love, x

  • Reply
    Reannon
    November 1, 2017 at 10:54 AM

    Pip, I just read this line in a book ( Little Fires Everywhere ) & it made me think of you- “Anger is fear’s bodyguard”
    Fear & panic are very similar so maybe when the anger sets in it’s your brain trying to protect you from the panic because anger is more easily explained than panic & often easier for people to deal with when they are on the receiving end. When people are angry we can try to calm them down or ignore them or even get angry back at them. But when people are panicked often we don’t know how to help or what we do to help is not helpful at all! Panic often just has to be ridden out whereas anger can sometimes be diffused with humor, time or space.
    Maybe I’m talking rubbish but I really wanted to share that line with you & OF COURSE you will be OK because you’ve already made it through 100% of your worst days ( GO YOU!) but I do hope these panic-y, angry times move on swiftly so you can enjoy more nice, calm times. Big Love Pip xxx

    • Reply
      Kate
      November 1, 2017 at 11:58 AM

      Reannon that’s a beautiful comment

  • Reply
    Ames
    November 1, 2017 at 9:45 AM

    Pip, it is wonderful of you to share these things – so many others are / have / do go through the same emotions and reactions. Breathing helps! Hugs 🙂

  • Reply
    Kate
    November 1, 2017 at 6:01 AM

    I sure hope you will be ok pip. I’m really sorry that you are going through such a hard time. ?

  • Reply
    Denyse
    October 31, 2017 at 10:14 PM

    Yep it works. It is what it is but is far better when you can name it and even better to write write write? Thanks for the reassurance you are Ok and making sure everyone gets some good advice in the meantime. Xx

  • Reply
    Jane @ Shady Baker
    October 31, 2017 at 9:36 PM

    Love your words Pip…every single time. Thank you. x

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