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  • Any advice on doing “adult things” when managing life with your mental being?

    Posted by darthcat on June 9, 2023 at 1:40 pm

    Most of the time when doing “technical stuff” I would be asking my parents for help, because their brains got this stuff while I could hardly get myself to focus on things.

    Now, with the potential of getting a job and the W2 forms that come with it.

    New Student list stuff for college, such as a parking pass that we are late on obtaining.

    Or, that “half-awake” feeling, which means that some of our alters are still asleep.

    Just feels like this big mush of “adult stuff” with all of this fine text and due dates that have more penalty than a lowered grade.

    We can take stuff one step at a time, just is it possible to be only doing one task per day, because doing technical stuff takes a lot out of you.

    Any advice and/or suggestions will be greatly appreciated. Thank you.

    Flusterette replied 3 months ago 3 Members · 3 Replies
  • 3 Replies
  • Shardspace

    June 9, 2023 at 8:33 pm
    Level 5: Froglet

    It is a big adjustment at first, and especially at the beginning with the forms and things getting started it can be overwhelming.

    The good news is that it does get easier after everything settles into a routine.

    Some things that help us:

    – A calendar, the kind with big squares for the days. Pay day, due dates, classes, parties, errands… everything gets a note on there so I can see what’s coming up. And I cartoon-style X out the box of every day that has passed so it also helps to keep track of what day we’re on. There are probably apps that accomplish all of this, but I like having it all in front of me on paper.

    – A notebook. Lists of things that need to be done, that can be checked off as you go. Between this and the calendar, it can be possible to divide out the stuff that needs to be done so you can do a little each day. For me, having it all planned out on paper takes a lot of the burden off, because then I’m not constantly trying to remember and re-remember things, which takes a lot of the energy. It’s great to be able to look at the list and be like, “Ok, just this and this and I’m all set today.” (Or if it’s a really busy day, I can look ahead and be like, “Ok today is going to be awful but tomorrow I have nothing I need to do”)

    – Asking lots of questions. Whenever you’re stuck, there’s almost certainly a forum of people talking about that very thing. I think I’ve looked up just about everything about adult life, all the way down to what kind of schedules tidy people have for keeping their houses clean. Sometimes that stuff makes for decent small talk as well.

    – Self care. If it was an awful day, if you accomplished something new, if it’s just feeling like a lot, if something big is coming up, if it’s a day off… there’s a long list of reasons to end the day with a favorite show or movie, set aside time for a fun hobby, soak in some fresh air and sunshine, or anything else that brings you joy.

    Oh, and on that note, it took me until college to realize this one:

    Sleep, nutrition, and hydration have a lot of power over one’s outlook on everything. I’d heard stuff like that before, but was amazed when I felt it play out in real life.

    Hadn’t had hardly any sleep, hadn’t eaten much, just hadn’t thought about it. Was still getting used to being entirely in charge of my daily schedule. Everything felt dark and hopeless and overwhelming.

    Got a sandwich with a bunch of vegetables on it and a big iced tea. And it was like magic. Everything felt so much better. It was very weird but then turned into what I felt to be a life hack. Similar magic often happens from late night to morning, after a good sleep (though that’s often easier said than done). Won’t solve everything, but it sure helps sometimes.

    I hope some of this helps!

    • darthcat

      June 9, 2023 at 9:21 pm
      Level 5: Froglet

      Thank you so much for this! 😊

  • Flusterette

    June 21, 2023 at 9:34 am
    Level 5: Froglet

    Pro-/Con- Lists are helpful.

    You can tailor them in many ways for all kinds of applications. They help to balance out logic vs emotion, and thus guide you to making a decision that’s right for you that meets the best of both worlds.

    Sometimes on reflection, my emotional needs are not as important as my logical needs and I make a more wise/mature/balanced decision or compromise that I ultimately am more proud of because it balances the Pros and Cons.

    Sometimes, despite all logic, my emotions are more important and I know I need to follow my heart, but at least I am aware of what to watch out for, and compensate for, to help make following my heart work out to its best.

    Like, I might look at a Con for something I want to do — is it able to be addressed and turned into a Pro (or at least a neutral)?

    In that way, Pro-/Con- Lists are useful for problem solving, checking the facts, coping ahead.

    When struggling psychologically, emotionally and physically, and it’s getting in the way of being able to do what I want, I try to fight the urge to just give up. I try to use the “HALT” Skill where:

    H=Hungry/Hydrated? (pretty self-explanatory)

    A=Angry? (or ‘negatively’ emotional, like sad or depressed)



    — If one of those letters needs attention, I make efforts to reprioritize to address them, and remind myself that such self-care can help make me feel better. Then it’s often easier to return to other tasks.

    The “Just Right” Task/Challenge

    There are days I have little functional capacity. I’m having one of those days today, have been for a few days. Today, I had it in me to maybe not do the big tasks I had hoped for, but several smaller littler easier tasks with little breaks in-between.

    Sometimes that can be: setting a timer for 5 minutes while working on a form that gives me anxiety. And stopping after that 5 minutes to do something else (or rest) for 15mins.

    I might go back in for another 5 minutes. And no matter what happens, at least I’ve tried to do something.

    Writing this was my “Just Right” Task, instead of vacuuming and dusting.

    Yes, being online here is more ‘leisure’ than not, but it afforded me a chance to look at some skills I’ve got lists of, too, and see if I can apply any of them to my issues today, and it made me feel helpful to someone else (you) which improved my self-esteem a bit.

    I was feeling a bit Lonely, so I justified being on here as tending a bit to that need. And now that I’ve done it, I feel more calmed down and ready to try to take on another task.

    Yesterday, I had to give myself a nap (even though I hadn’t done much all day), because I realized everything was ticking me off and I was exhausted. But, then I was able to make myself food, do dishes, and fold laundry. Had I not napped, nothing would’ve happened, or I would’ve rage-tasked (which is not optimal for me).

    Task Bundling / Rewards

    This is because Adulting is annoying sometimes, so you have to find your way to make peace with what you have to do.

    Suppose I want a chocolate. Instead of giving myself the chocolate easy-peasy, why not try to bundle a task in with it to make it a reward, and then feel extra-good about it?

    Like, “I have to get up to get the chocolate. On the way, why don’t I do something I’d rather not do like a chore or task, and make the chocolate the end reward?”

    Or, “I really hate cleaning my room. I’d rather listen to music. Why not put on music and let myself feel uplifted by it, focus a few minutes on letting the music soothe my mood, and then try to do some cleaning while I’m listening to music?”

    Consider looking up “Cognitive Behaviour Therapy Techniques” and “Dialectical Behaviour Therapy Techniques.”

    They won’t always apply, or come to mind automatically, but slowly with more review and practicing using them, your brain will slowly learn to approach things with new techniques in mind that better help you to live your life.

    I recommend them because, in my years of seeking treatment, these seemingly simple and obvious skills have had a huge impact on emotional regulation, distress tolerance, mindfulness… and generally have helped make life easier to want to live for.

    The skills have helped me with “reparenting” myself, and with adulting.

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