If you feel like you are slipping backwards, what can you do?

by me

This life is all about slipping backwards. There isn’t a moment when I can relax on solid ground. I must be vigilant, always. Because if I’m not, the slipping starts, fast if I’m not paying attention, if I’ve gotten cocky about my mental state. If I pretend I’m like everyone else, if I’ve convinced myself.

It’s like a dance, a dance of desperation. Keep ahead, quick steps, don’t trip!

First things first, I acknowledge that I’m slipping. I try to regard it with eyes of compassion. “It’s okay to slip,” I tell myself, even when panic of the deep dark well is waving frantically behind my eyes. A few deep breaths, be in this moment. Still, not enough. A walk, yes, a mile around my neighborhood, sprinting through some of it, if I can. Still not enough. I grab my journal. Write about what is. Describe it, vilify it, cry about it – get it all out, purge. Now the exhaustion sets in, it always does after a good cry. I focus on the exhaustion (much more pleasant than the anxiety). I grab my phone and headphones and listen to a meditation. It relaxes me, I drift into the nowhere for a while. Finally, some peace.

But I know it’s still there. The grasping, poking, laughing anxiety. I’ve beaten you this time. I give myself credit, pat myself on the back. Each success counts, each is a victory worthy of acknowledgement. Till next time, anxiety. When will that be? I don’t know. But I have my toolbox of tricks ready. Ever vigilant, forever if need be.

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