Jan 26, 2011


Lots of stuff going on in life right now.  Not all of it is good either.  Quite the contrary, actually.

But I decided a long time ago to fore-go spilling the intimate details of my life here in these pages.  Did a quick cost-benefit analysis, as I do, and the costs outweighed the benefits by a considerable margin.  So let's stick with generalities and vague pleas for help.

What do you do when the stresses of everyday life start getting you down?

I've been known to self-medicate with good times, good (and bad) booze and an active fantasy life.  That last one isn't as cool as it sounds.  It's just that I've always been able to calm myself by drifting off to sleep and losing myself in the Dreaming.  It's a talent...I can't explain it.

But all of that is just distraction from the bigger, more stressful picture.  Life.  Sure, it's helpful...especially when when there doesn't appear to be anything that can be done about the shit that is storming around your life sometimes.  But it's not a final solution.  Now THAT sounds ominous, doesn't it?

So seriously.  What do you do to compensate for the bad things that life stirs up for you sometime?


i am the diva said...

sorry you're having a hailstorm of shit, Earl.

I have major anxiety issues when i get stressed... so yoga, meditation, and Zentangling help me destress.

sending you virtual hugs to use how you see fit.

sybil law said...

Ugh. The fucking stress.
I don't know - I think perspective is what keeps me sane. So does talking to myself, ranting to the cats and bitching to someone trusted. And then - I let it go, because ultimately, it's only hurting you. If I can't control it, I don't let it control me.
Great, now I sound like Oprah.

Also, angry sex is always good. Lucky Gia!

Hope the shitstorm eases up.

RW said...

It's so hard to seriously say because I'm not sure I have as much stress as other people. Well when I look at the family balance sheet and think about how close to the edge a certain loved one is sometimes I get anxious. But it generally passes of itself.

I drink every day, which is not good. And that may have killed some brain cells, or grew some. I'm not sure which. My brain is like a fucking petrie dish with all the shit I've taken.

I've walked around for a long, long time being completely untroubled by the thought of death. I'm too curious to find out what happens, the answer of the ages, to be that frightened of it. So if death is not a problem (well not an easy die-in-your-sleep death / I would probably freak out about the other kind) what can stress you besides the sad fate of others? And the inability to make things good for them sometimes. It's heartache from time to time.

But I write furiously. Sort of like this, without going back and editing. Just let it rip. And it's channeling that energy into creativity. And then you get all wrapped up in the project. I've written two books that probably go no where in four years and am just starting another one. It's like a race against time. But it channels the flow. See what I mean?

Mostly I ramble on and on. That seems to help.

Dave2 said...

Have a chocolate pudding and thing about better times.

Then drink a fifth of Jägermeister and forget about current times.

Then wake up after two days and face the music hungover and with chocolate pudding breath.

Or... say "fuck it" and make the best play I can with the crappy hand I've been dealt. :-(

Slyde said...

whats wrong, sugerplumb?

i'm sick as a dog and cant talk too much, but ill try to call you later.

Poppy said...

I do one of two things:

I ignore the bad.

I deal with the bad.

It sucks being an adult sometimes. :)

hello haha narf said...

usually i am cleopatra, queen of denial. that is not a solution i recommend for others. especially since i really dance in denial.

often i find talking about the issues seems to help because others are able to be more objective than i can be, they can see solutions that i can't see. and that talking seems to take the BIG BAD OVERWHELMING feeling away. almost like if i acknowledge the problems they aren't as terrible. so yep, i ask for solutions and then get to acting upon them.

dave's "make the best play with the hand i've been dealt" is pretty smart.

also, and i realize this doesn't work for everyone, i really try to focus on the positive, to remember that whatever i am going through is temporary. i have my dogs, my friends and my family...everything else is simply gravy.

love to you and your mrs.

if i can do anything to help, just holler. whether it be an ear to listen or a shelter for a weekend getaway for you two, i'm here. (come to pittsburgh for super bowl weekend...w00t!)

Verdant Earl said...

Diva - Zentangling. I like that.

Sybil - Yeah, I gotta start ranting to the cats more often. Little fuckers.

RW - I used to ramble on more often. I've become less...rambly, I guess, over the years.

Dave2 - sleeping off a bender for two days sounds nice. It's snowing again today. Maybe I should just start drinking...

Slyde - You get sick every year around this time. Want me to rub your belly?

Poppy - totally sucks.

Becky - We are gonna make this Pittsburgh trip happen one of these days. But not in the middle of winter and certainly not to watch your Steelers win another Super Bowl. But thanks. :)

hello haha narf said...

yaaaaaaaaaay for you admitting the stillers are gonna win another one!

in all seriousness, sleep is a sign of depression. while wonderful, it is incredibly dangerous as a coping mechanism. xoxo

Mrs. Hall said...

OOOOooOOOOoo good questions there Earl.

I'm kind of sick this am so I'll just cut to the chase.

Alcohol will make your problems grow. So will retreating into a fantasy world and over sleeping.

The way to get better is to reach out and lean on those that like you. If you avoid, isolate and shove stuff down-- it just gets worse.

Also, try to get some perspective on the situation. Identify your problems one by one. Are these problems common (like job/money stress)? Are they specific to this time of year (massive amounts of snow and gray influences anyone's mood) What is your role in making these problems grow? We all have personal responsibility.

And finnally, what can you do to make them less of a problem. I say, 'less of a problem' not FIXING OR ELIMINATING the problems because that's not possible.

Pain is part of life. It's how you deal with it that makes the difference.

And maybe reconsider spilling your guts in this blog. To whatever degree you can tolerate. I find that I can create a lot of healing that way. Writing my way to betterness.

It's not good keeping crap inside.


so there ya go.



Verdant Earl said...

Becky - I generally root for the AFC team if it too teams I don't care very much about. And yeah...sleep can be a sign of depression. I know that all too well.

Holly - I ranted a bit to a friend of mine last night. It helped. But I'm not going to go back to making this a tell-all blog. Did that once and it didn't turn out well for me.

Mrs. Hall said...

well, I can say that sometimes, when I open up untold spools of stuff on my blog, it always turns out well.

but I write about everything in an honest, positive light. even crazy stuff. It reflects how I feel in real life. It also directs me, and how I'm really going to deal with it.

like casting a spell.

yeah, that's it. blogs are magic!

huh. well. :)

take care.

Kaye Waller said...

I have a list of things I do; coping with stress is a process for me.

1. Refuse to think about it.
2. Think about it and get depressed.
3. Tired of being depressed, I get pissed off. This includes a great deal of swearing and ranting.
4. Whinge a bit; bemoan the bad luck that seems to follow me.
5. Get pissed off again.
6. Meditate/chant.
7. Beg someone to buy me a box of wine.
8. Drink and write.
9. Pass out.
10. The next day is somehow always better.

Unknown said...

What I do is try to bring to mind some of the times a bad thing happened which in retrospect turned out to be good. I've got a few biggies.

Good luck and I agree with keeping the blog general.

Avitable said...

I eat a shitload of chocolate, watch TV or go out to a movie, and then go to bed. When I wake up, things are always a little clearer.

badgerdaddy said...

Personally, I go for a long run. Or at the very least, a long walk with the dog. I take time out, away from the world, for myself.
Sometimes I just hit the gym and work my way to being absolutely shagged out. That can work too. Other times I get fucked-up drunk.
It varies.
But I always end up dealing with it in some way - everything else listed above just helps me get it in order in my head, what needs to be done, then I do what I can. What I can't do, I have to kind of... partition.

Keep your chin up, fella. There's a lot of strangers with big love for you in the world. x

Bruce Johnson said...

The age old dilema, do we do the good thing, or the bad thing. Do we take up cardio vascular excersise to get the endorphines pumping or do we throw back some Bacon Flavored Burbon.

The fact that you are trapped in your house with enough snow outside to tip over the planet isn't going to help much for the next few months.

Any advise is simply treating the symptoms. The real question is how do you remove the source of the stress. Society is the cause of most if it.....so my recommendation is a one way ticket to Alaska or Guatamala. (personally, I would head south). But we really take the plunge. The old saying is, "We stay so long in Hell, becuase we know the names of the streets." The unknown scares us more than our stress.

Kevin McKeever said...