Pizza, Costco and Your Mental Health

Last week we hit the Summer Solstice, the longest day of the year. Then it hit me… it’s almost half way through 2019. The year is almost half over. I don’t know if you can relate, but realizing that half 2019 is behind us leaves me a little stunned:

Half over??? I feel like I’m just getting started!

Thanos_Pizza

When I eat pizza, the first few bites taste AWESOME. I look at all of the delicious pizza and something in my brain tells me that this moment can last forever. It’s awesome. So I keep eating and when I come up for air, somehow I have finished three pieces and there are precious few pieces left. It’s an existential pizza moment: No matter how much I wish, the pizza won’t last forever. And in a cruel twist of fate you realize that no matter how much you eat, you never quite find that ‘first bite’ feeling.

Wow. That’s random. I didn’t plan to write about pizza. It’s how my brain works: food is good and everything can be reduced to a food metaphor. I guess that I’m a pizza’s half over person.

The pizza year is half over

Here are a few things I am reminded of:

a. I have set fewer goals this year. Too many goals just makes things confusing. Better to set a few and focus.

b. I am clearer about my values: being more present to my family, my marriage and my health, and bulking up a few more of my counselling and teaching skills.

c. Being outside makes me feel more alive. My mind slows down a little, so I enjoy the moments a little more.

d. Breathing is good. It means I am still alive. It’s good for my body… and even better for my heart. I am trying to breathe more this year. When we breathe, our mind automatically slows down.

e. You gotta have stuff you look forward to: Like Thanos getting his A** kicked (Avengers: Endgame), pizza, a sci-fi book before bed, summer holidays, pizza, camping, weekends, pizza, growing your face-fro (my beard), going for a walk, pizza. Notice a theme? You gotta have things you look forward to even it it doesn’t last (Avengers: Endgame was 3 hours, but felt way too short…)

f. Sleeping makes you more awake. Weird, huh! Most of the past 3 or 4 years I have experienced various levels of insomnia. Some of it was self-induced. I had so much to write, so much to do that I didn’t want to sleep. I managed to get by on 4 hours of sleep but I felt like a walking zombie. Sure, I wrote a lot… but part of my brain was asleep most of the time.

g. You can survive without coffee. After not sleeping much at all in December, I stopped drinking coffee in January. I drink a dee-kaff once in a while, but most days am koffee-free. It’s made a difference for me.

h. Understand whether your body is tired or just lazy. When you are tired, rest. But when you are lazy, kick your a**. I have different levels of laziness: About 20% of my laziness is what I call my “recovery lazy”: the calm after the storm. 10% of my laziness is my “preparation lazy”: taking time to rest before projects. Unfortunately, this kind of lazy can quickly morph into “Costco lazy.” Being Costco lazy makes up about 70% of my laziness. It’s the kind of lazy that catches you off guard. You only plan to spend 20 minutes being lazy but before you know it, you have lost 3 hours of your day and somehow spent $250. (I should have an alarm on my phone that goes off whenever I go to Costco without a list…)

i. Enjoy this moment, right now. You and I have only this moment. Why waste another second reading this post? Get outside. Laugh. Play with your cat… or your plants… or something.

So… this post was a little random. It’s been a while since I last wrote. I may be a little rusty… or just hungry? Going forward, I plan to write more often here. I hope to see you again, soon!

• • •

For a related article, see “What to do When You Are Having a Rear-View-Mirror Day.” I invite you to sign up for my blog by clicking “Follow Getting High on Recovery.” When you enter your email, you will get free access to the blog. I do not send spam or share your email with anyone.

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Geek Therapy: Getting High with Geek Therapy

I am a Geek Therapist and I use popular culture and superheroes to help people. My specialties include addiction and mental health recovery, parent-teen relationships, emotions and communication skill-building, family counseling, trauma support and spirituality in counseling. If you would like to experiment with Geek Therapy and how it can benefit you, contact me at smswaby@icloud.com.

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