Good News Tues! – Focusing on the positive.

Good news tues-

I felt compelled to write a blog post today, and then I realized its Good News Tues..I wanted to start this theme for Tuesdays, because I struggle with good news. I struggle with determining what is good news and what isn’t, I struggle with taking in good news, and I struggle with expressing good news. In writing these posts, not every week, but just in forcing myself to write them, I hope to teach myself to become better at expressing my own achievements, goals I’ve met, and good things I’ve done.

As of right now, I am two months late at opening my store. Between unexpected expenses piling up, construction on my building, and now an obligation that takes me out of town, I am feeling defeated. This is not how I envisioned this going, and I’ve never been good at accepting when things go wrong. I am, however, still determined to see this through. I still have a few small things I need to do before I can open, but I expect to be open by July 1st at the absolute latest. This is my good news. I am choosing to focus on the fact that I AM opening, over the fact that it’s been delayed.

Being able to do that, focus on the positive over the negative, is something I have worked to be able to do, almost my entire life. After years of trauma, untreated mental illness, and continued failure to be “normal”, it became a defense mechanism for me to expect the negative. Think about it this way – If you prepare yourself for something bad to happen, if you think about all the ways things can go wrong and come up with a plan or response for each different scenario – to your brain, you’ve got it under control. However, if you are not expecting anything bad to happen, and then it DOES, your brain panics because you were not prepared for this. This way of black and white thinking is a trauma response. It is a way to protect yourself from any harm or bad that could happen, but it also mentally exhausts you.

When you are constantly putting your body in a state of worry and stress, you are running a marathon in your head. It seemingly never stops. Those of you who have experience with this, know exactly what I mean. Its a loop in your head of one or more internal monologues that are playing on repeat, telling you everything negative that can happen. Your brain starts to believe these things will actually happen, and in turn you have a physical response. Whether it be anger, fear, anxiety, etc, you trick your body into feeling an emotion over a scenario that HASN’T EVEN HAPPENED.

After dealing with this trauma response for years, it became second nature. It wasn’t until I stumbled upon a video on TikTok, talking about this exact response, that I realized what I was doing. I immediately started correcting myself anytime I realized I was doing this, and while I’m nowhere near perfect at it, it has made a huge difference in my way of thinking already.

Correcting yourself in the moment can be very difficult, but I ran across a tip that might help –
Give your internal monologue a name. Name it Karen or Chad, or something else ridiculous, it doesn’t matter, but name it something easy for you to remember, and not after something you enjoy. Now here’s the trick: Every time that inner voice starts going, throwing scenarios in your line of thought that haven’t even happened, probably never will happen, and are just making you feel like crap about yourself, say something like “back off Karen, no one likes you anyway” or “Seriously? Chad, do you realize how dumb that is?”.

Giving that voice a name, makes it a lot easier for you to recognize when its around. It’s important to remember that this inner monologue is NOT you. It’s not a reflection of you, it doesn’t make you a bad person, or broken. It is a protective response to trauma that you have endured. Give yourself grace, you’re doing great. ❤️

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