*Thanks to Kim for writing the following guest post about boundaries as part of her healing journey*
Over the last two years, I learned that my boundary type has contributed to a life-long pattern of disappointment and ‘let downs’ from those that I love, from friends, to lovers, to family. Making the connection between unrealistic expectations, self talk and how that affects my boundaries was groundbreaking for me. I was also able to take this following statement to heart: “Just because there is sadness or guilt in a decision, doesn’t mean that it’s the wrong decision for me”. Keeping this statement in mind has really helped me set more healthy boundaries that are in line with what is truly best for me. I am now learning to be more true to myself with less fear of how it will affect others.
*Thanks to TMM for writing the following guest post about her experiences with sleep issues. Her advice is invaluable!*
Thank you for the opportunity to help someone who is experiencing sleep issues. Since I tend to give too much information, here is a synopsis of the text:
The number one piece of advice I can give to anyone beginning to suffer sleep issues is to give themselves a break. Take time off work, or cut back on a busy schedule. In other words, reduce the pressure to be "up and at 'em" in the morning that causes us to worry about getting enough sleep. Knowing that if you don't get a good night's sleep tonite, you'll have time the next day to snooze or rest will help you relax a bit about the problems you're having. That was one thing I did wrong - I kept trying to make it to work every day, despite my lack of sleep and the pain and fatigue I was feeling. And I failed miserably at making it to work, which only made me feel worse about myself and put more pressure on me to find a way to sleep.
And that's the number two piece of advice I would give: start dealing with the anxiety about not being able to sleep right now, because once that downward spiral starts, it's really hard to spiral back up. First we can't sleep, for whatever reason. Then we can't sleep because we're worried at bedtime about getting enough sleep. Nicole: Help her get to a place in her mind where she knows that no matter how poorly she sleeps, there will be a way to compensate for it the next day that will bring her back to an even keel. For me, it was taking a nap a few hours after a got up in the a.m. It was like starting the day over again, only this time more refreshed. And the knowledge that I could take that nap helped me relax about the rough night I was experiencing. Also, I developed a bit of a cavalier attitude toward my sleeping pills. For me, they were a failsafe. I would tell myself that if I wasn't asleep by a certain time, I would take sleeping pills. And just knowing that option was available helped me relax and sleep.
Some sleep experts will tell you not to nap, because then you won't be tired at night. And for some cases that's true. But for me, I found that I simply needed more rest than an 8-hour sleep, especially when I was dealing with pain. If you were in the hospital recovering from surgery, they would encourage you to nap. Well, you're recovering from insomnia and pain issues. You may need the extra rest. This ties back into giving yourself a break. The other day the therapist I am seeing reminded me that I am indeed in distress, and in need of help, no matter how guilty I feel about not being at work every day right now.
I'm a psychologist, activist, and writer. I believe in sharing our stories and wisdom as a tool for our own healing as well as the healing of those around us. For this reason I've chosen to share what I'm learning, as well as guest posts from other people who've been there.
About the Blog
This space will provide information, stories, and answers to big questions about some of my favorite topics - boundaries, burnout, trauma, self compassion, and shame resilience - all from a feminist counselling perspective.