Modern Day Survival Tips

Graffiti in Brooklyn
I found this graffiti in the middle of the pavement in Brooklyn and loved it. I thought it would make quite an apt image for writing about coping mechanisms, and particularly mine when I am upset, or things just aren't going as planned.

I am going to try and make this post as positive as I can, and hopefully without too much cynicism. However, I have always been of the opinion to hold something back - I'm not saying be selfish or rude, but in the end, sometimes you are the only one left. I am all about self preservation and derivatively protecting my heart, but this coping mechanism has only developed over time. For example, in past relationships I had a tendency to bend over backwards for that person and rely on them far too much for things, which I have learnt, that I can actually provide for myself. And in the end all this resulted in me feeling put out, used and resentful.

So here are my (hopefully) useful ways of getting through potentially difficult situations.

01. It is OK to be upset - Try not to keep emotions bottled up, but try and keep them in until you are at least in a 'safe' place. Like, if you are being bullied in work, don't let the bully see that they have upset you. If you are going through a breakup, be miserable. It's allowed! Cry every night, if that is how you feel. Just don't allow it to be all consuming, and if possible keep things in perspective. It's inevitable you will 'get over it', as much as it doesn't seem like it at the time.

02. A problem shared - If you have someone you can trust, talk to them. Some advice though; if it's a work issue, keep it outside of work. Unfortunately, this is where my cynicism creeps in. We are all human after all, and we all suffer the whole spectrum of human emotions, such as jealousy and some other not very nice traits. As disappointing as it is, not everyone has a heart made from gold. I really struggle to find people I trust, therefore I don't tend to exercise this coping mechanism as much as I probably should.

03. Have a hot shower or bubble bath - I find when under duress your sweat glands can work overtime. By locking myself away in the bathroom with a cupboard full of pampering goodies never fails to make me feel better. Also by getting away from a situation and cleansing your body, can also be psychologically beneficial for your soul.

04. Do something for yourself - Set yourself a goal, it will give you something else to focus on. This can be sorting out your finances, learning to play the piano, or crocheting a throw from scratch, all of which are my 2016 New Years resolutions.. We shall see how long they last! I find by creating lists on my phone helps me achieve things, and also acts as a sort of reminder.

05. Retail Therapy - This always helps me, and I love to treat myself at least once a month. Maybe I should be saving instead? But, you can't take it with you, can you? Plus, never underestimate the power that a new lipstick can possess.

06. 'Hello Domino's Pizza'  - Sometimes when you are in shock, or upset, you need to eat/drink something which contains sugar. A hot cup of tea, with one sugar, in a Disney mug is sometimes all you need (The Disney mug is imperative for mood boosting!) If you can eat, because I know when I am feeling a little bit fraught my appetite tends to diminish, have your favourite chocolate bar, or something savoury that you enjoy, such as a pizza. Yum! Just don't forget the mandatory glass of prosecco.. For your nerves, purely medicinal of course.

07. Distract yourself - Sometimes by just not thinking about it for a while can give you the perspective you need. I am definitely not saying build a pillow fort and avoid it till it goes away, but an afternoon of wearing your Primark onesie is OK once in a while! So, after that gorgeous Lush bubble bath, stick on your go to TV Series or favourite film. I love watching anything that makes me chuckle, such as Gavin & Stacey or Miranda.

08. HAVE A PLAN - If something is upsetting you, don't go in all guns blazing. That's usually the worst thing you can do. Having a plan (written down is usually helpful - it gives you something to refer to) helps to control emotions, and you can usually get your point across more articulately. Also by doing all the above, it tends to give you the much needed time to calm down. I mean, it could be that you slightly overreacted to something? Although us girls would never, ever, admit that.  

What does everyone else do during difficult times?