Thursday, 16 May 2019

The CBT Diaries Week Three

Well would you believe that it's week three of my cognitive behaviour diaries or that I've managed to actually continue a mini series and stick to it! Progress! 

I was actually unsure whether to post today's instalment for the simple fact; my therapist was ill which equalled - no CBT session. In a little bit of a series of unfortunate events, there had been no message from Mind cancelling my appointment so early morning, I took myself on an hours walk off into town (a thumbs up for my Fitbit steps for that day!) , worked in the library all morning, then went to the park, sat in the waiting area for fifteen minutes to find out I could've had a nice long lie in, watched a bit of Jezza Kyle, This Morning & afternoon gameshows. Something I did notice was my reaction. The staff in the office were so apologetic that no one had informed me; old Jess would've huffed, stormed out, called Brad in a panicked state and her day would have been ruined. I was completely fine.

Prior to the appointment for the week, I had an odd week. My last session had majorly helped - Larry the Lizard was an easy way to explain to my close family what is going on and how anxiety and panic like to creep in any old time of day or night. Overall I was feeling calmer yet when I did feel an emotion it was like it was amplified x10 over. My panic attacks made my chest feel tighter and being short of breath felt like suffocation. I'd completed some of the flow chart exercise sheets which were a part of my homework, and found little patterns to when I felt anxious or depressed. I wasn't 100% sure on how much I felt completing them helped. When I go through them next week I'm sure it might give a talking point. 

Something I did want to touch on was my little morning in the library. When I'm feeling anxious, less confident or just not quite right, I find it really hard to lock up the house. This stems from a little anxiety I had about five years ago which was that I'd left my straighteners on or plugged in. Fast forward as this anxiety grew and I couldn't leave the house if I didn't photograph plug sockets, or myself locking then pushing the door. I suppose this could come under an obsessive compulsive tendency? Two years ago, I knew I needed to get a grip on this photo taking system of leaving the house, and tried to self train myself with coping strategies. Fast forward to today, when I'm feeling good, I can leave the house no issues. As right now I'm not in the best place, Brad suggested a few weeks back leaving when he leaves for work at 7:30am. This worked as I could get a walk in and spend the days at my family's. For today though, I thought I'd try the library. I love flicking through books, and also working in a different environment works wonders for me. I picked up 5 books to skim read. One was on CBT and one was a mini book on anxiety which broke down a lot of what I've been through in sessions already. It also delved into coping behaviours that people use and as I was reading,  I realised I've used so many - sticking to someone during social events - check. Always having your phone to hand so you can put your head down instead of socialising - check. It was quite an eye opener and a quick easy read too. I also caught up with my One Line A Day entries, and wrote in my Smythson notebook. Then I had lunch in the park. 

The day didn't quite go to plan. I survived it though. 
Hopefully next week I can share my next session with you all!
Have a lovely week folks. 

Further resources: 
Making Sense of CBT by Mind 

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