Travel is like medicine for the soul

While I was studying at University, I would always go overseas each year in the Uni holidays, without fail. It was the event that I most looked forward to at the end of the year. It was the sweet reward for my hard efforts that I put in through the year…Working hard to pass my subjects and then working hard after class in my part-time job to save up for my precious holidays. To me, travelling was medicine for the soul. Unfortunately, since I have started working full-time, it has been incredibly difficult for me to go on holidays because this is subject to being able to take leave, and if you have enough annual leave left.

There are many benefits to travelling, this includes benefits to one’s health. It can decrease stress and also be good for the clearing of the mind and allow you to relax. It also has many physical health benefits, because it will force you to get moving around and doing different activities that you normally would not do. It is good for your mind to because you get to become familiar with a new culture and the customs of a society that is different from your own. You get to meet new people, taste exotic foods, and see beautiful things that are greater than anything you have ever imagined. I firmly believe that those who travel have more stories to tell and are more interesting people to talk to and spend time with. Travel can teach us an invaluable lesson in life, teaching you to appreciate what you have, or encouraging you to try harder to achieve what other cities have. Basically, you are going to ‘A Whole New World’. Pun intended.

In saying that, there are a few things that travel is unfortunately not good for. Travel costs money. Usually. A LOT of it. You need to buy flight tickets, accommodation, transport, food, travel insurance, and so forth. It is not a cheap activity, especially if you are struggling to survive day by day, how can you afford to travel? Or if you are trying to save up for a house or something else…it just sometimes doesn’t seem necessary. It can be risky too, especially if you are going to third world countries where you may contract an infectious disease. You could also be at higher risk of being mugged, or a target of scammers because you are a foreigner. For some, who have a fear of flying, water, or motion sickness in general, travel could cause more headache than it is worth. It is also a time-consuming activity, which generally requires lots of planning…and if you factor the time you spend ‘travelling’ it could be days of precious annual leave that is being used up, in which you could be ‘Chilling at home’.

Travel has a multitude of benefits for one’s mental and physical health and allows us to become more culturally informed. However, it is not a luxury that everyone can afford and it also comes with some risks and dangers. However, for me, travel is a medicine for my soul and the longer I don’t travel, the less alive I feel. Even if it is a temporary medication that drowns my sorrows, only for a moment, it is worth it.

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Can’t believe it is 2020.. This year i am going to be posting short like essays like this, which I use as a preparation activity for my exams 😀 …

2020 Values

Another year has passed, another decade is here. Strange to think that I can still remember when it was the year 2000, and we were in a new Millenium…I remember these gummy lollies that started selling pretty well back then, I think it was the Millenium bugs or something..so tasty.

I sometimes wonder how the mind chooses what to remember and what not to. I would say it would remember the happiest moments and also the saddest moments of our lives…then anything in between could be a coincidence or something out of the ordinary that made us remember it.

If I were to reflect again on 2019, it would be a year where others have already said, a year of ups but also downs, love but also heartbreak, regret and the fear of not trying.  I honestly look back at myself and think I was a different person than to who I am now and I think this will always be the case as I continue to grow, continue to make the same mistakes in the past, one step forward, how many steps backwards…as long as I am moving somewhere.

2020. A year in which I put high hopes for. It is the year that I leave my 20s…how scary. A year in which I hope is full of travel, goals being met, and relationships strengthened. Hopefully. 2019 drained me…in a whole different way. I think it’s a combination of working too much, committing so much, and studying too much. Too much of anything is bad, isn’t it? All work and no play makes for a sad joy. I always seem a bit out of balance in all things..either I do nothing or I try to do all over it. Either I love someone or I hate them. A black and white world, that is a scary thing.

I faced many trials while working at my casual job, from workplace injuries to bullying, the anxiety of not having worked…because my manager hated me. To becoming a nervous wreck at my other job from dealing with clients that are abusive. Why did I try so hard? But, I am thankful for my new job, where it seems alright. The only major anxiety now is that 1. I can’t progress from where I am at the moment. 2. I don’t know how long my next contract will be. But, I like the immediate management..and the pay is good. So I should, not I am grateful.

2019 was the year my gym closed down. I didn’t gym for two months while I contemplated where I should go. I felt like a headless chook not knowing where to go. It was a big thing for me because it made me lose my routine…exercise is so important to keeping you feel sane after a long day at work. I had my favourite Zumba class where I can dance away my worries…when it closed…I didn’t know what to do..so I did nothing… I am grateful now for my new gym..no it’s not the same…1. It’s a mixed gym, not an all-girls gym that I am used to. 2. The Zumba classes there aren’t that great. 3. It costs a lot more than my previous membership, but the benefits are that parking is easier as it located near my house and not in the city. The distance between home and the gym makes it easier to bring me to go to the gym. Exercise and staying fit will always be an important part of my life, and I can tell when I haven’t exercised my mental health going downhill. SO make sure you guys exercise okay!

2019 I worked on building my self-confidence. I still am working on this and will continue in 2020. I learnt instead of focusing so much on makeup to cover my flaws, to instead trying to take proper care of my skin instead. To be preventative rather than treatment orientated. I am not sure if it’s a side effect of the pills I take, the lesser use of makeup, or the skincare products I am using…my skin is far from perfect and I still get the odd pimple here and there, but I am comfortable going to work or out with no makeup on. I have also been trying to lessen the use of my hair straightener (I sold the old one and bought a new one last year) and try to leave my hair as natural as possible. When it’s messy, I tie it up in a way that looks nice and no one would guess how messy it is! I realise, that by not using the straightener as much my hair has never been as healthy…I use daily some leave-in conditioner as well… With the exercise thing that I mentioned above, I want to be more comfortable with my body shape. I have always felt shy about my body shape, thinking I am too fat and wearing just loose clothing…safe clothing I say. But I would say I am broadening my “look” and trying to “my style” that makes me look good (in my eyes).

Something which I am going to focus on 2020, is “Saying NO” and taking a risk. I feel my health is deteriorating because I place a lot of importance in working a lot…and for the last five months, getting one day off every two weeks is my norm. It’s exhausting. But, I fear the consequences of what will happen if I stop one of my two jobs. Money is so alluring. It makes me temporarily “Happy” when I get paid. But…working so hard and not having the ability to enjoy it or friends to enjoy it with me…makes me feel empty.

Relationships. I had a lot of failed relationships this year. Whether short, long, or fleeing. I made a lot of “new” relationships, but whether or not I really made any super close friends…I don’t know what I was trying to achieve, but I think I was trying to fill that emptiness inside of me.  This year, I want to be wiser. Learn to love my own company. Let’s hope 2020 will be a good year to strengthen relationships with those I do want to…and break free from some that are not healthy.

Studies. 2020 will be the year I finally finish my graduate certificate in disability studies… phew…Took me two years to get there…but I got there. I also am planning to take the Gamsat in March this year. Again… I think its 5th or 6th time? All that money… is an investment I hope, it’s only wasted if I don’t keep trying…right? I remind myself, by studying Gamsat materials, it is a good exercise for my brain and to help me think outside the box more. Yesterday, some friends and I went to do an escape room activity, and it’s so exciting to be able to crack codes and figure out riddles. Let’s do our best! I remind myself here, that it is about the quantity of time I spend studying in books and text, but the quality and the way that I can learn and prepare for the exam. This time, I will think outside the box for different ways to prepare for the exam. Maybe reading books, maybe talking to people, maybe doing a new hobby…who knows…But I will make the journey a more enjoyable one than before.

Cleaning, almost forgot about this. I had a major clean up in 2019 and I hope that I can continue ‘cleaning up’ the rest of the house in 2020. I did the Marie Kondo style clean up in my room/..I got rid of a mountain full of coat hangers…clothes, and things I never use. Who knows how much rubbish we can collect over the years? It’s liberating to know where things are (most of the time), and having things so neat and easy to use. I hope I continue the Marie Kondo way in 2020 and improve upon it and continue to be disciplined daily to put things away.

Family. So important, I am so lucky to still have both my parents and my siblings here in Adelaide. I also have an awesome aunt and uncle who live so close by and the really feel like my substitute grandparents who have already passed. I have to say, I am so guilty of not spending as much time as I should with them…Also, I can’t forget, 2019 was the year my nephew, Jaxon, was born! This bundle of cuteness lighted up so many of my dark, sad, and lonely days. Here’s to hoping I can spend more time with him and enjoy his first few years of life.

Travel. I didn’t travel anywhere overseas in 2018 or 2019. But now, that I finally have the funds and the annual leave to travel. I am happy to say I have booked my first overseas holiday in three years for next month! Yes, it’s just to NZ, but that’s still counted as overseas for me! I am so excited, it’s always been a place I needed to visit at least once, just as Canada was…I am excited to see beautiful scenery and amazing sights, it will also be a good chance to become closer to my friend whom I haven’t spent a lot of time with in the last few years…I hope I can travel to somewhere new each year in the upcoming years! Travel is like medicine for the soul.

I think these are all the values I have worked on in 2019 and hope to continue building upon in 2020. If I think of anything, I guess I will edit or post again.

 

Thanks for reading my random ramble!

 

Happy 2020 to you!

 

EDIT: Just remembered as I posted, I forgot to say that 2019 was also a great year in which I gained new subscribers to my blog! i am amazed that there are so many people from so many different countries randomly coming here and reading my blog. Thank you to you all! I hope I will continue writing my random thoughts and feelings towards life, adulting, and etc in 2020.

Experience?

I woke up today and I was working on writing a job application for a senior pharmacist position…and as I was thinking of all the different pharmacies I have worked and all the different roles I have had…and realised I am an experienced pharmacist…even though I don’t think I am… I have achieved much and experienced much… I don’t know everything, but I know something.

Applying for jobs is about selling yourself, your knowledge, and your experiences. Some talent in writing is needed here…you want to make it seem like you have done more and learnt more than you probably have…if you undersell yourself, you won’t even get a chance to progress from paper to in-person interview.  That reminds me, I have another interview this coming week… It is part of the same company I am currently in..but a different branch…further away from my house… but hey, stability in finances comes with a cost. I love my job now, but having short contracts constantly and not knowing if I have a job next year is scary…and I need to do my best to grab whatever opportunities there are… Otherwise, I won’t be able to save up for my house :(.

I feel really lucky now…Even though at times it’s frustrating…scary… tiring.. and exhausting. I think there will come a time where I will look back, and say I can’t believe I made it that far…by working so hard! You reap what you sow and if you worked hard…your efforts will pay off.

Going to a house inspection later today…I finally have a day off! So I might as well use my time wisely.

In other news, yesterday I heard from a colleague that another colleague had suddenly passed away..No one knows why. They were young. Lot’s of potential and a funny person. They will surely be missed. But it reminded me greatly about the uncertainty of life and the experiences we have interacting with each other…If you treat someone badly, and then they pass away, there is no opportunity to say sorry or to forgive them.

So think again, do you want to live a life of regret? Treat people the best that you can.

I honestly rather that people treat me bad, then I treat someone bad.

Really Random Rants: Thankful?

Sooo I had a blood test done a couple of weeks ago and I visited my GP (finally) to check the results. Not sure if Bad News or Good News, buttt I found the reason why I have been feeling so tired, lethargic, and gained weight lately. 😦 I suddenly put on 3 kg from last year! So apparently I have an Iron deficiency..no surprises there…given I rarely eat beef and prefer fish, chicken, and lotsa vegetables…plus I have been getting periods every three weeks instead of monthly…weird right??I also have something wrong with my thyroid stimulating hormone, I have too much of it…which means my body is low in thyroxine and is trying to restore it by excreting lots of hormones…or something like that.

sooo I have to do a few follow up things, repeat thyroid function test in one month…Follow up Iron test in 3 months…and an ultrasound to see if there’s is anything wrong internally that is causing the extra bleeds…

I really hope I get some answers soon, sometimes you just want to find out why you feel the way you feel…

I am grateful for things like blood tests, scans, and medications…to treat my iron deficiency there are easily accessible iron supplements that can be bought in pharmacies…and if I do need to take thyroxine tablets, those are also easily bought with a prescription and it is not too pricey to buy a packet of 200 -which lasts for about 6 months…

Feeling super grateful for the advancement of health and medicine that we can easily treat things that were never treated before…

 

Oh also on top of my existing health problems, I have had this rash..not sure what it is…query psoriasis, eczema, fungal (?), medication allergy? Not sure..but it’s been spreading around my body and I have kinda just left it…waiting to ask the doctor for her opinion, even though I suspected it to be fungal. Hopefully easily solved by some antifungal cream and some steroid.

I am not sure why I am writing all my personal problems here…but I felt the need to document it somewhere….why is my body going haywire all of the sudden?!!??

But anyway, as I said before…luckily there are treatments for these conditions…

And ladies and gentlemen, that is my life. Super tired from working two jobs and 13 days per fortnight…but I like the income. I guess everything comes with a cost. … xD

Random rants: On Replay

Do you ever have times .. usually at the middle of the night.. when you are trying to sleep because you have work or a flight early tmoro morning… and you cannot sleep.. because you keep ruminating over something again and again… so much so that the story becomes twisted and strays from the original. Your emotions, feelings, and thoughts taint your memory of what really happened…

The story becomes what you want it to be instead. A fragment of the truth, but what is the truth? Each person will tell it in a slightly different way. Just look at the bible, in the New Testament there are several books written about the same event but by different people.

Alas, this late night post to try to get off my mind what has been weighing on my mind for the last few weeks. I think, I need closure, I have to settle things, for once and hopefully for all.

Random Rants: Judging People

I have always thought I was pretty good at judging people…it’s not the best habit and my sister constantly scolds me for it…Tells me I should be more understanding…What if something happened to them that made them that way?

She explained to me that some people get jealous and they act out and bully people they feel they are stronger than. I asked so many times ‘Why?’ do people treat others so badly? Maybe they are judging us too?

I have started at a new site this week…what I had always dreamed of…working in Adelaide’s mental health hospital!!And boyyyy was my first few days were a bit scary. Left on my own to manage a dispensary in which I had a one-day handover with the person going on leave. Different processes, different people, different patients…It was a bit much. On top of that, there was one lady whom I had spoken to over the phone before working at another site. I had judged her to be extremely rude and patronising-even over the phone~! She was demanding things be done and belittling me. I don’t know if she remembers but I do remember her, and I just so happened to be working at the same place as her now.

I sensed there was some hostility among the group of pharmacists that were working together, there was some bickering…quarrels… We are so understaffed…it is pretty terrible and makes people unhappy. I just try to make the best of it..as someone covering I can only do so much…

But, suddenly this person yesterday…whom I had barely spoken a single word to in the past three… days..Asked me how I was going …if I was settling in? I was taken back..no one else had asked me… I am used to being thrown in the deep end and trying to swim. I asked myself, maybe she just takes some time to open up…maybe there was so much change happening that she assumed I would cause her more work and trouble?

Overall, I like it. To be absolutely honest I am terrified when I walk out to the ward to go to the staff toilet. But I tell myself, it is going to be okay. If they are allowed to walk around the ward, they should be safe! I feel so bad for being scared of them…because this is what I thought I wanted to do? To help people with mental health to get better. But, why am I so scared? I think it’s because I am so used to seeing these people behind bulletproof glass and having security around me all the time, I forget these are normal people. They all seem to have a glazed look in their eyes… of sadness, of loss, of something else. What happened to them for them to send them to a mental health hospital?

So many stories…so many things…I really do hope I can make the most of my time there and learn as much as I can to learn and grow as a pharmacist and as a person.

I am thankful that I am living the dream, even though it doesn’t feel like it. Today we had two fire alarms go off, so there were constant alarm bells ringing. We also got two phone calls from Police officers who needed the deputy director to identify some dead bodies of previous patients…there are patients lying on the ground outside.

I can finally say, “I made it to where I want to be”…But then I also realise that there is more to climb…I went through one door, but this is just opening even more doors and corridors to walk through.

 

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Scared to be Lonely

When we are lonely, we wonder when we will ever find someone to share our life with…

When we finally get into a relationship, we are worried how long will it last for, what obstacles will we face.. what is our future? Are they the ‘one’ for me?

Is there even the ‘one’ for me? What if there are many others better than this ‘one’? Should I stay or should I go?

When we are in a relationship we should really let go of, we fear the loneliness again…

When we let go of that relationship, we fear if we make the right choice, but we are afraid to show our feelings…because you don’t want to be vulnerable…

When we try running back to the relationship, we may find out that they have already moved on and we are hurt again…even more hurt and lonely than before

When we are at this point, we ask ourselves, did the relationship make us anymore less lonely or more happy? Who said we had to be in a relationship to be happy?

When we realise this, we realise we can be happy now…and that being a alone doesn’t mean you are lonely. We have great friends, family, and most of all-pets to take away our loneliness

Big fish in a small bowl

So I listened to a podcast about an interview with a girl that was part of one of ‘The Bachelor’ series. If you don’t know what this series is about, it’s basically like one guy that around 24 girls are trying to fight with each other to win over. It actually sounds quite stupid, if you ask me. What makes that one guy that special that 24 pretty girls are fighting over him?

I guess it may be the big fish in a small bowl effect. Because they are all taken out of their normal lives, with no access to the internet, other people..etc they just all behave differently than they normally would. In the real world would you really fight over this one guy that you know is seeing 23 other girls at the same time? NO, you will just think of him as a dirty player and find someone else better that does not go out with other girls at the same time as you. Most of them wouldn’t even swipe right on Tinder for them I don’t understand how the girls in this show could genuinely be in love with this guy…doesn’t it piss them off to know that he is seeing so many other girls at the same time?! That would piss me off greatly. L.O.L.

Anyways, I am using this example to try and explain the tunnel vision that sometimes we may have in our lives. We think that things are a certain way because that’s all we have ever known, but elsewhere..be it another state or country…things are done differently. People are different. There is so much of life that is yet to be explored and sometimes we feel like there are not enough fishes in the sea, but maybe we just haven’t been brave enough to explore the ocean in its entirety.

For example, you may think… that you will never meet ‘the one’ for you. But, maybe he or she is not living in your small town…what are the chances that your soul mate is conveniently located in the same place as us?  Maybe, we have to expand our world a bit further…and become a small fish in a very very big bowl.

ps…and in other words…I am starting a new job tomorrow! First day…feel very much like a small fish entering in a massive seaworld themepark ..>.< wish me luck!!

pps. Thanks for the 2000 visits to this page!

 

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Random Rants: Regrets

Just got hit by a wave of regret today…

You know that feeling how you think you have it bad…but then you lose someone or something that had always been by your side and you regret taking them/that thing for granted? It could be a relationship, a beloved piece of clothing, or a job.

Maybe your mind might play tricks on you by making it seem better than it was, you remember all the good times and things that that they/it gave to you, but you forgot the way the relationship didn’t work, the item was not working as well as it once did, or the reasons why you left that job in the first place.

Alas, every end of something great can only open the door for things that are even greater.

You will meet someone or encounter something new that will blow your mind away… I guess in order to make room and time for something new, the old has to pass by.

But, it’s okay to feel sad, it’s okay to mourn for what you once had and lost. You don’t need to ‘cheer up’ or ‘look on the brighter side of things’…Because otherwise, you miss out on learning more valuable lessons.

Lessons about learning to take care of things more properly in the future, of not taking relationships or people for granted, and treasuring what is important to you most.

So, take your time, feel the regret, sadness, and loneliness. Embrace it. Fully. Let it do all it wants to. And then, embrace the next new thing.

 

 


 

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Rainbows

For the last two days..while I was driving to work I saw a rainbow in the sky.
On the first day that I saw it…I was like..is this a sign that everything is going to be okay? That despite all the decisions, changes, and stresses- will it really be okay?
Today, I saw the rainbow again and I felt kind of angry at it…’ Why’ I asked myself, are you giving me false hope? Is everything going to get better? Why does it feel like it is getting worse?
I think something is wrong when you are angry at something that beautiful in the sky.

I have been reminded lately, that I am responsible for my own happiness..and I need to stop letting circumstances, other people, and things from biting away my own happiness.

I am somewhat responsible for all the stress I have been feeling…overcommitting to too many things and somehow believing I can do it all well. I can make a choice not to stress myself out and put down some things…if I wanted..but I still choose not to…being undecided.

Book Reviews: The subtle art of not giving a f*ck: A Counterintuitive Approach to Living a Good Life

I just finished reading the “The subtle art of not giving a f*ck: A Counterintuitive Approach to Living a Good Life” by Mark Manson. Funny way I got introduced to this book…it was actually from an ex-suboxone client of mine…I saw it and asked about it when he brought it into the dosing room with him…he highly recommended reading it..and finally after about 6 months later of procrastinating…I finally read it.

He presents some interesting concepts and thoughts to really challenge my mind and thinking patterns. I like how he says, “Don’t try to know yourself”. If we get into that trap of thinking we act a certain way, then it can become very hard to change that way of thinking. We can prove ourselves wrong and surprise ourselves…

I really enjoyed the personal stories he told of his own adventures of adulthood…he also used a mixture of anecdotes from a number of well-known people…and he told them in a way that is both enthralling and captivating. His topics encompass a lot of topics including career, death, life, decisions, and love.

My personal favourite story he told was when he said he walking towards the edge of a cliff…what was only a few seconds in reality…was like an eternity for him…as he was inches away from dropping to his death…he described how he never felt so alive. I don’t think I have done his recollection justice…you have to read it for yourself :)).

This book teaches you the basics of knowing what your values are and choosing what not to give an f*Ck about. Interesting concepts that are taught in an easy to understand and jargon-free book. If you don’t normally read self-help or non-fiction, I would highly recommend this book to you. It will hopefully offer you a different perspective or way of viewing this complicated life.

I am thinking of checking out the other book he has written…!

If you have read it or are planning to, please let me know your thoughts on this book.

 

Life is a game analogy -Part 2- Sushi Go Party

 

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Have you heard of this game? I recently played it with some friends over the Easter Long weekend that just passed! It’s actually really really fun…even though I am incredibly bad at it. 

Despite its initial deceptive cuteness and looking like a light hearted game, it can soon become very competitive as we try to win the race to the be the first at the finish line and you also need some sort of maths skills to add and subtract in this game. Upon reflection after playing this game, I believe that this could teach me, and maybe you a life lesson or two.

Before getting into that, I will explain how this game works, for those who haven’t played before!

Each player starts off with seven cards in their hands, then when the game starts you put  down one card you want to keep and pass the rest of your hand to the person on your left. You receive a new hand from the person on your right…and you repeat..choose a card and then pass the rest on. The round finishes when every one has put down 7 cards and there are no more cards being passed around.

The cards all represent different amounts of points you can get or lose and the description of their points is at the bottom. For example, if you have two tempura cards-you get 5 points (if you just have one you get nothing). There are also eight rules that have been decided upon at the start of the game-that is in the middle of the board. These rules decide how much special combinations of cards are worth…also there are also rewards and penalties for having the most of a card or the least. For example, in our first round we had a rule in which the person who had the most Pudding cards got 6 points, the person who had the least had six points deducted off their total score in a round. In another round, we had a rule that who ever collected four special cards over three rounds would get 12 bonus points.

Upon reflection, I think this game can teach you about spending, saving, and thinking about investments. It might be a long stretch, but it requires you to have to think, What is the best way, with the least risk to get the most points.
In real life, I guess we are playing with money, stocks, shares and other investments. There’s a risk that we will lose out if we don’t have insurance or cover for a particular thing… Just like when you see a Pudding Card come around, you have to think is it worth taking one, just so that you might not be the one with the least amount of pudding cards and get six points deducted, or whether or not you take it, it will happen anyway? In life, we have also have to think and consider, should I get health insurance or car insurance, just in case something happens that I do not foresee and I suddenly have to fork out a huge amount of money? I could be winning by purchasing health insurance and actually use it when needed, or maybe I might be losing money as I never needed it…

While I was playing the game, I was quite defensive and not totally confident. My strategy was to try not get points deducted as much as possible…However, I think this is one of the reasons why I did not do so well; in retrospect. I was so focussed on not losing any points, that I actually didn’t gain any or many points. ..I think for a very big proportion of my life has been spent trying to avoid bad things from occurring… Not trying this incase it doesn’t work out, too scared to do that because what if I get hurt…Not willing to take risks on investment, incase I get scammed… I was just so worried about what might happen, that I forgot that if I focused on getting more points in the first place, those deductions would not have made such a great difference either way. Having no points at all, is like trying to survive without money in the real world…:(

Yes, its a risk to get out there and try…Why? Because you might fail. Because people might laugh at you for trying. Because may try to make you feel like you aren’t enough.

But, you know what? The jokes on them, because you took the risk, you might win big and win the game in the end. (Or you might not, but we don’t talk about that.. ) 

If you have a chance~ Go and and Play Sushi Go Party*~

*Warning- Does require at least primary school maths skills levels to play..*

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What’s in a name?

I’ve been thinking lately (what else is new?)- about the power of a name..

There are so many uses for a name! People associate themselves with names, land marks and buildings have names, countries have names, and also illnesses have names.

Flowing on from the last post about introductions, I wonder…can you know someone without knowing their name? Like why does it matter what their name is? Yet, it DOES matter in terms of having an identity that you are who you are. If we didn’t have names, would we just be described by our behaviours or how we physically look like? That blind man over there…That fat old lady sitting there…I guess we may that to an extent if we didn’t know their names…

It’s really amazing the stereotypes that we associate with certain things..be it a gender.. “I am a boy, so I should be strong, I should not cry!”…”I am a girl, so I should know how to cook and clean!”. It could be a race, “I am Chinese, so I should be ashamed about the fact I do not know how to use chopsticks properly!”. Sometimes I feel like, due to all the names and labels that are put on us, we feel like we have to be or act a certain way to fulfil other people’s expectations of us. It’s like a self-fulfilling prophecy. You think you should act a certain way, therefore you act that way…and then you think it is because I thought I had to act that way so I did, or did I naturally want to do it? I hope you understand what I mean.

So, in particular I want to highlight why naming has such a big level of influence on someone ‘diagnosed’ with a mental illness. I will explain shortly why I put diagnosed in quotation marks. If you haven’t heard of the DSM, you can check out this link here basically it is a bible of all the known mental illnesses of mankind at this point of time. It is always changing, things are added and things are taken out. For example, homosexuality used to be in the DSM, until people rallied to have it taken out. I imagine it would be a terrible time to live in if you were homosexual…if you revealed to a doctor you had homosexual tendencies…you would be subject to various, often painful, treatments in order to ‘cure’ you and make you ‘normal’ or heterosexual.  Sadly, often these treatments did not work and caused terrible trauma and pain upon those individuals.

The DSM started off as a small thin book and throughout the years it has been continually added to…there are more entries going in than out..it’s now a huge book. So, it causes us to ask the question, “Are we just putting labels on normal human behaviours?“. So basically everyone has mental illness. If we are all mentally ill, then what right do we have to called others ‘Crazy, Pyscho, and Insane?”

But my point is, are we really helping people on their road to recovery by sticking numerous labels on people?

I remember a time when I went to see a doctor about a problem… she initially diagnosed it as “XX” condition…then later she changed her mind and said it was “YY”. Did any of these labels help me to get back on my feet? The answer is N-O. It did nothing, except perhaps make me even more paranoid. I looked up Dr Google and looked up all the symptoms and things that people diagnosed with “YY” had…I went to forums and read how people’s lives seemed to be affected by having “YY”… I was confused, scared, and my anxiety was through the roof. I felt like I had a life sentence upon me, just because of the subjective, narrow-minded opinions of one individual who was useful for nothing except chucking labels. Like a self-fulfilling prophecy, I doubted my self to be normal and got self-conscious of every action that I did, did I do it because I have “YY” condition? Was I going to turn out like everyone else that presumably have “YY” condition..

I am so glad now, I left that doctor after realising how toxic visiting her was… I see a different doctor who does not just throw labels around. She genuinely wants to understand what I am going through and why I am going through those things…It’s not a matter of throwing my labels upon a person…it is trying to understand what they are going through and helping them explore options to why they feel that way. The first doctor had created a large chasm between me and her, she had elevated herself to be the ‘expert’ and I was just a ‘passive clueless’ receiver. Because I listed out a few symptoms that fit into the definition particular condition, she deemed I had it…it didn’t matter  that there were exceptions to the rule, that I had strengths and characteristics not associated with that condition…it was because she used her subjective, stereotypical view and saw me as ‘abnormal’ and I needed to be ‘fixed’. She made it clear something was wrong with me and that I needed to change, she gave the impression she was normal. Now I think back, she was nothing but an evil witch. She didn’t want people to get better, she just wanted herself to feel better about herself by chucking labels on everyone.

I am not saying labelling a condition is not useful for anything…certainly if you want to have mental health sessions subsidised by the government you have to be categorised into having a diagnosis of some sort…the same is needed for insurance company claims etc…but if you are trying to help someone, it is not useful for helping them in their recovery by focussing on their deficits and not their strengths.

I have been meaning to write about this topic for some time now, but put it off.. because I am not sure if I can do it justice..

I would be super interested in hearing your thoughts about this!

 

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Rant on Stressing

Call me anti-social…or whatever.. but I don’t enjoy hanging out/spending time with people that I honestly don’t care about. Sounds weird…rude..even but it’s true..Maybe I am weird.? Selfish? I feel like there are many people that I deeply care about that I haven’t had much time to catch up with, I don’t want to waste my time with people who won’t appreciate my presence and vice versa. This might be because lately I’ve been a bit stressed and short on time…

I have been working non-stop everyday…this week was really busy…I had to cover someone as the manager of a hospital dispensary..I’ve only been there on a handful of occasions and this time it really stressed me out! I can tell how stressed I am..I had to work from early morning until well into the night…I cannot believe I used to drive one hour to work -work for 12 hours and then drive one hour home- than repeat several times a week… I think I am getting too old for that…no wonder I was so stressed back then and so so tired. It’s exhausting. When I finally hit the weekends where I only work in the afternoons..I slept till midday…because my body was just tired…I didn’t have time to go to the gym..I didn’t have time to use my phone…No time to see friends…I was too stressed to sleep properly…by the end of the week I had pimples on my face…really dead hair…and a rash on my neck..and just felt groggy..

After my last 12 hour shift on the Friday, I caught up with some friends…and they asked me why I was working so hard? It’s not like I want to work there full time or want a promotion..I think it’s just my own harsh work ethic on myself..I put myself responsible for everything that goes wrong…I feel so bad if I have to make more work for someone else…but at the same time I know I have my limitations and in the end I am just one person. Is it selfish for me to assume so much responsibility? I am just covering someone..yet I feel like I have to try so hard. Who am I trying to impress? I actually could have said NO to covering that person, who just happens to be my boss and manager…

I think maybe its my work ethics that are back to haunt me. I don’t want people to talk down on me and say bad things..sigh why do we try to impress people..but in the end we are just pretending everything is okay? it’s not okay!

There were times at work where I really struggled. I felt so alone. I felt like no one could help me. I didn’t know what to do..and honestly… I just did what I thought would be the best for the patient. I don’t know if it is what other pharmacists would do…what my boss would do..but honestly, though it was a tough week. I realised…there is lots I do not know. I forgot what I did know already. It’s through these tough times we grow muscles. But I think I still need to pace myself… Maybe doing four days in a row there was a bit too much…on the back of working 15 days straight…with minimal sleep and study..It’s not a good combination.

At the end of the stint at the stressful hospital, I caught up with some friends late at night. I just felt I needed to relax. I felt like I lost myself for the past week…All I did was work sleep repeat. I don’t want to live like that anymore…because what is the point? All that extra stress bites into your mental and physical health and then you will end up using the extra money you made to pay for people to make you feel better…its a viscous cycle of madness. Because of the high amount of medical bills you have to pay, then the more you work.

Just need to think about why you want to work and what you are working for…have a vision in front of you and ask yourself “Is it worth it?” I hope it is..

Well, for my reason for working so much is that I want to be able to both go on a holiday overseas AND also put a deposit on my very own house! I want to Marie Kondo the sh*t out of it..hahaha…Don’t get me wrong, I love my current cute house I live in with my parents, but I would love to own my own place that I can call my own and invite friends over without worrying about all the mess……….that is my current house.

What was this post even about?

 

Extroverted Introverts

So I was talking to a colleague at work..he was sitting by himself-not at the staff room having his break. I asked him why he didn’t want to go into the staff room to have his break.. Interestingly he said he didn’t want to talk to people he didn’t know downstairs.

I was quite surprised .. this colleague in my opinion was a very talkative person and seemed to get along with  everyone …I thought he would love to talk to people in his break..

He said it made him tired and took energy away from him..

He said he was actually an introvert…but because of work..he  has to act extroverted.

It made me think…we do live in a world where extroverts seem to thrive in….work places need collaboration..communication and also working with difficult people…Unless you work in a job where you worked by yourself or work all by yourself..it is hard NOT to avoid people.

I think I am quite introverted..as sometimes I do not have energy to talk to people I don’t know…and I just really want to be by myself… But at other times I really do get  bored or feel lonely…and then I will call up a friend to arrange a meeting.

I also established that we are all probably a bit of both…I guess it’s a spectrum…we aren’t always one or the other…but certain situations may force us to be more of one than another. It can be hard….

Have you ever thought what kind of person you are?