illustrated moment

making sense with words and pictures

Storm in a teacup

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I’m flying through the days. I’m hurtling through the seasons. I’m racing through the years.

Every second I get older, make more connections, get busier, have to work faster and harder.

I would hate for you to misunderstand me – I love the way life develops, shape-shifts and grows. It’s exciting! It’s an adventure which is unique to me! I know this – but sometimes it can be overwhelming.

If the balance of Life seems like it’s tipping from the exciting to the daunting, you need to stop what you’re doing. That’s what I did, on a grey and windy afternoon. I had been ignoring the internal alarms which had been triggered a while back – I thought that if I didn’t want to see them, then they wouldn’t exist. I was wrong.

I noticed that the focus of my mind was unravelling, my heart was feeling a bit heavy and my body was fatigued. For a long time I had ignored the small anxieties about trivial things, and instead of going away, they had begun to root themselves and grow larger. After a while, it stopped being the case that I was too busy or had better things to think about than to spare a thought to my worries – I started to fear the confrontation with my own internal conflict. That’s when I started noticing the effect my clouded mind had on my day to day life. Self-doubt, indecision and unnecessary concern began to feature in my normally carefree, happy and excited life. There was only one way I could calm the storm brewing inside.

I made a hot cup of tea. Switched off all buzzing, beeping, flashing technology. It was time for some old-school therapy, with a piece of paper and pen at hand. I sat down and confronted myself. Reflection can sometimes be uncomfortable, but it is the only way you can figure out exactly what is truly causing you stress. I made a list of all the negative thoughts and emotions I had – I just listed them down so I could visualise them with my eyes. Some were trivial, some were complex. There were some that I thought I had dealt with in the past, and some that felt surreal, but there they all were – right in front of my eyes. Instantly, I could see the ones that were an utter waste of time and energy – they were not based on anything real and there was nothing I could do to ease them – so I put a line through them. Instant relief from instant action. For the others I had to use the energy my wonderful cup of tea had given me. Using rational thinking and an objective view of realism, I worked through my insecurities, concerns and melodramatic emotions. At the end of that intense session, I felt exhausted but very light, like my head was now clear and back to its focussed, awesome self!

In an effort to wrap things up in a positive way, I flipped the page over and made a list of my hopes and ambitions. It didn’t matter if they were tiny short-term goals or epic long-term dreams – they all deserved a space on that sheet of paper! It felt great to refocus my mind and energy on the positive ambitions I want to live my life by.

So now I know how to calm the internal storms before they get out of hand. All it takes is a piece of paper, a pen and a glorious cup of tea to keep you company. The moment you identify your fears and anxieties is the very moment you strip them from their power over you. Don’t put off some self-therapy – make time to sit down quietly and pinpoint your thoughts and feelings. In an age where you need to stay on your toes, ready for the momentum of any life event, your energy levels are valuable. Don’t tire yourself out with the little things you can overcome. Choose to take control of your mind and your life.


Author: illustrated moment

illustrated moment was born out of a desire to create and connect through drawing, animating and blogging. Check out the active blog of awesome and become a follower - so you can be in the loop with all the awesome updates. Enjoy!

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