I’m fucking stressed. There, I said it.

I have taken a full-body slam to my sleep cycle.  It’s totally stress related.  I am currently in a tail-spin of avoidance, procrastination, and other semi-destructive behaviors.  It’s great, I love being me.

There are about three areas of my life in which I’m feeling sort of overwhelmed at the moment, and it’s all a total reversal from, say, a month ago.  Suddenly, I’m two months away (less!) from needing to have all of my apartment packed and ready to go to Oregon; I’m 6 weeks away from my sister’s wedding; and I am so swamped at work that I’ve been staying late and cutting lunch short.  Now, normally, one of these things happening on its own would be a good thing, and I could even handle two, but the combination — which all feels so sudden, even though I’ve known all three were approaching — is kind of driving me batty.

What I do when I’m stressed out is avoid.  I don’t make lists, I don’t talk things through, I just avoid.  I play hours of computer games or read things I don’t even have an interest in.  I write stories that have no point.  I develop new and exciting ways to keep from doing what I should be doing (hey, I washed and vacuumed my car for the first time in at least a year last weekend).  And I stay up really, really late, eye-bleedingly late, because if I try to go to bed too early, I might lay there and think about all of the things that I should be doing.

This weekend, I had a 4 a.m. night, a 2 a.m. night, and last night, 3 a.m.  Which didn’t go so well with the alarm going off for work this morning.

The difference between now and four years or eight years or twelve years ago is that now I know this is what I do.  So it should be easier to stop it and buckle down and do what I should be doing, right?

Well, not so far.  But I’ll keep you posted.

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3 Responses to I’m fucking stressed. There, I said it.

  1. starstraf says:

    I am good at packing, I can come help if you wish

  2. drenilop says:

    As a fellow stress-maniac, I know what you’re feeling…. and let me be the first to tell you that recognizing your stress patterns is a good first step. It’s hard to do that. It’s even harder to take steps to stop those behaviors, even though you know they’re bad for you. I’ve learned to manage by allowing small bits of the avoidance behavior. Fiction stays in the bathroom during these periods. I’m only in there for so long at a time – in the mornings I’m rushed, at night I’m too tired to do anymore – so I get enough of it to feel like I’ve done some constructive avoidance but not enough to really put me even further behind (no pun intended) on my work. I get one Sudoku puzzle a day – which is all the Washington Post puts up a day. And since I’ve been on that system for more than a month, which is all the longer the archive goes, I’ve done all the puzzles that are up there and have no urge to go back and re-play ones I beat already, so there goes that time-waster.

    So I guess the trick I’m trying to tell you is that you have to systematize your avoidance behaviors. Allow them, but constrain them in ways that you can’t avoid or fight – externally imposed limits, no matter how shabbily external (bathrooms, *ahem*), are easier than trying to do it internally.

  3. therealjae says:

    Well, it really is something to recognize your own tendencies, so don’t be too hard on yourself. (You do realize that you used to do this and *not* comment on it, right? Good lord, that was five years ago. *shakes head*)

    Anyway, you have a lot on your plate right now, and I’d frankly be more concerned if you *weren’t* visibly stressed. Good luck clearing that plate, at least a little.

    -J

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