Last week, as many of you will have figured out, I learnt the hard way that we all have set backs and minor slips.
In CBT, I discussed this and my concerns about anger building up to an unstoppable level.
If you pour water continuously into a small beaker, it can only hold so much. If you keep pouring, the water is just going to flow right back out from the top.
It isn’t the top water that has ultimately caused the flood though; it’s the amalgamation of all the water.
See where this is going? Sometimes, we bottle things up for so long that the stresses of everyday life can tip us over the edge. It may seem strange to be crying your eyes out and wanting to throw your phone at a wall because your best friend didn’t tag you in a status, but truthfully, that’s not the major problem. The emotions are simply the water in the beaker that is already full. And they’re pouring out for a slight release.
I assure you, I am the master of bottling things up. Just call me Miss Bottle. My glass is always half full, ready to be filled to tipping point. (I apologise for making an optimistic ‘glass half full’analogy so negative, but hey it’s what I do).
I’m not saying pour your little heart out to everyone who’ll listen. Or cry about every tiny thing that’s happened so to empty the beaker in your mind. But, it’s important to be mindful; to know when it’s time to stop and take a breather and organise your thoughts, fears, and annoyances.
Bottling things up always seems like the easy way out. Suppress the bad, focus on the good and prevent burdening anyone with your problems.
But pretending you’re fine when you’re internally exploding only leads to breakdowns and relapses.
We can use a simple Worry Tree tool to plot out our daily stresses in order to prevent them building up.
Of course it’s easier to say ‘I don’t need to worry about this now’ than to actually do just that, but by focusing on the things we can sort out now helps distract us from these smaller, less urgent issues.
I guess sometimes it’s clearer to plot down the different areas in our lives and evaluate what can be done for our unhappiness.
By doing this, we can learn to live in the present moment and enjoy smaller things whilst maintaining a healthy and organised lifestyle.