For as long as I can remember I’ve always struggled with mental health issues.
I can’t really pin-point a situation where it started, just a series of things accumulating over a period of time.
It’s not easy living life with a mental illness, and it’s a lot harder to concentrate on the day to day tasks in life.
Everyone’s situation is different, routine can be good, it can also be bad.
In my case sometimes routine can affect my mental health, no two days are the same, waking up, getting dressed, going to work… all that stuff is the same.
When I wake up, I already know what sort of day it’s going to be.
It sounds silly but it’s similar to when you wake up with a gut feeling about something. Me? I wake up knowing instantly what sort of mood I’m in.
There is nothing I can do to change that frame of mind. ‘Positive energy’ doesn’t work. It’s incredibly different to just a ‘bad mood’ – it’s almost like your thoughts, whatever they are, are full of negativity.
You can try and avoid situations, taking yourself off into a different space, removing yourself from any situation that could be detrimental to your mood.
My day usually starts off okay, unpredictable but usually okay. I’m not a morning person. I’ll never be jumping for joy at 7am in the morning.
My routine is all over the place, I’ll wake up usually snoozing my alarm and ending up running late for work.
My anxiety already running wild, asking myself: ‘What’s today got in store for me?’
I am a constant over thinker – and this usually manages to mess my day up completely.
I can be having a regular conversation with somebody and all of a sudden the conversation may come an end – usually you’d think ‘oh fair enough’ but not me, my anxiety goes into overdrive.
‘What have I done?’
‘Have I said something wrong?’
‘Am I too clingy or annoying?’
I start to panic.
It’s hard to explain how it feels, you feel like whatever you do or say, someone might take something you’ve said the wrong way.
For me, I’m not the type of person to just leave a situation- regardless of what anyone says it’s not nice to feel disliked. I tend to approach the situation in the wrong way, going way over the top.
I think I’ve been described as too apologetic before.
I can’t help it – I just get into this mind set where I must apologise – nine times out of ten it tends to make the situation worse as my paranoia makes me just slightly overbearing. You know when someone’s upset you and you want to be left alone? I find it difficult to do that – I want to build bridges – I don’t want any bad blood.
I’ll admit it, I absolutely hate the feeling of being disliked, it stems from my early years of high school.
I was never one of the popular kids – just the weird kid. Sometimes the person might not even dislike me, they might just be busy. But I can’t just tell myself that. In my mind, it means something’s wrong.
I immediately start thinking the worst, it’s almost like I’m expecting a situation to turn sour before it even has.
No day is the same living with a mental illness, you could wake up one morning with a positive mind set, and minutes later you could be in the most negative mood imaginable. These can last for days, weeks even months in some cases.
To anyone who I’ve annoyed, upset or been a rubbish friend to… I’m sorry, this is me now.
Words By James Conlon