A great TEDx Talk on the gentle power of HSPs:
Perfectionism. If you struggle with depression it may be at the root of your terrible self talk. One minute you’re berating and belittling yourself for being imperfect. The next you’re imposing standards even a perfect person couldn’t live up to as punishment for your imperfection.
Worst of all, if you ever do live up to a standard you’ve set for yourself, you can’t just be proud of yourself. If you can reach the bar you know it’s time to raise it.
Clearly the bar was set too low.
If you’re a perfectionist, you likely push yourself with no regard for your limitations, sensitivities or weaknesses. You have something to prove. You’re never comfortable with your flaws.
If you’re a sensitive person and a perfectionist you may often push yourself until you’re nursing a cold and a migraine just waiting to lash out at the next person who asks you a simple question.
I went on like this for years.
Ask any good lawyer or photographer what’s most important to their work and the one thing they’ll agree on? Framing.
What we choose to focus on, where we point the audience’s attention is crucial.
No One Asks What Was Left Out of the Picture
You see, there’s always a whole lot more to the story than the one flower that’s in focus or that particular cobblestone walkway. There’s more to any individual than a couple of youthful indiscretions a litigator may play up for the jury.
When a story is told, the audience follows the direction of the lens. Continue reading
I remember the precise moment I decided it was time to go on anxiety medication. It was at the end of what I’ll refer to as a month’s long, anxiety bender.
Life With GAD. Business As Usual.
If you have generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) I suspect it’s quite common to not really notice that there is something wrong. You have probably been the one friends and family say “thinks too much” for as long as you can remember. You may even view this as somehow making you superior to your peers.
I rarely viewed my anxiety as problematic. In fact, I viewed it as my secret sauce for success: my anxiety motivated me to give a damn.
When I was experiencing panic attacks in college I started to suspect that something was wrong, but that only went on for a semester or two. Many of the panic attacks involved me panicking about how I would fail at life if I stopped being anxious. Without the anxiety to motivate me I would surely fail!
I have been haunted by my overly integrated superego for years, listening to it tell me that I am actually a failure. Only in college did it start to become crippling. This is around the first time I experienced a major depressive episode.
I remember the first time it became a legitimate problem. I had failed to turn in an assignment on time in a journalism class — I don’t really remember the reason — and so I decided that I deserved to be found out for the lazy, loafing, good for nothing, failure that I truly was and that I should be punished. Since the paper was already late, I decided that I did not deserve the redemption of an extension of the deadline. I decided not to turn in the paper and to stop going to class. I decided that I deserved to fail.