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Wisdom received from Moodscopers - Part 1. Tuesday October 20, 2015

Following my previous blog "Thank-you Moodscope" (29 September) here is the first part of what I have learnt since joining Moodscope.

I have learnt...

1. To "be" more... and to 'do' less. To be more accepting of myself and of my situation,
to be more open to the future and to be more confident that I will deal with whatever comes, to be more rooted in the present moment, and not reliving past conversations or events, to 'do' everything less frantically and to go with the flow, to 'do' things less perfectly. (I know, either something is perfect or it isn't, but you get my drift. After all, a Grade A is usually 80% or above – so that allows me 20% mistakes!)

2. To savour small pleasures daily. The shared joke with a colleague, the smile from a stranger, an interesting programme, turning the radio up and dancing whilst singing at the top of my voice, a lovely cuppa (actually, make that three lovely cuppas!)

3. To live more fully in the moment (which allows my intuition and creativity to flourish). Watching the clouds floating by, the raindrops on the window, the flickering candle flame, the different flight patterns of birds, enjoying the feel of the sun, the sound of children playing.

4. That quality relaxation is essential for my well-being (and that of those around me!) and any associated guilt is not helpful to me or to my nearest and dearest. I am more effective after a good rest, or after a quality break (no, I don't like the term 'quality time' but agree with the concept!)

5. That any exercise, however gentle and brief, will improve my mood. A few gentle stretches whilst listening to a piece of soothing music, a stroll to the corner shop, a walk in the park, a bike ride, a swim or an aqua fit class, a yoga session.

I can now change "I have learnt..." to "Today I choose (to accept)..."

A Moodscope member.

Thoughts on the above? Please feel free to post a comment below.

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Lex Tue, Oct 20th 2015 @ 5:35am

Dear Frankie, what a great list of lessons learned. This is a route map to well-being. And today, being a Tuesday, you've reminded me that I sometimes call it "Chooseday" - so I'll choose along with you... Thank you. L'xx

Frankie Tue, Oct 20th 2015 @ 10:25am

Morning Lex; I remember your phrase of "Chooseday" - and try to make every day a "Chooseday"! It's so much easier to do on a gloriously sunny day like today though isn't it?! Frankie

Lex Tue, Oct 20th 2015 @ 12:33pm

I shall choose to have coffee! L'xx

The Happy Hobbit Tue, Oct 20th 2015 @ 6:31am

First comment. I do not know why but you piece remind me of the words of JFK:-
"Do not ask what America you can do you. Asl what can you do for America"

Frankie Tue, Oct 20th 2015 @ 10:27am

Morning Happy Hobbit and welcome; (I'm loving the name!) Thank-you for this quote; I can see why it fits ... Looking forward to reading you again! Frankie

Debs Tue, Oct 20th 2015 @ 7:15am

Thank you Frankie, this is a great reminder. I hit rock bottom yesterday and fell apart. I ended the day lying on my sons bed while he lay sleeping just crying and crying. Your blog makes me realise I've been doing too much, beating myself up for not being perfect and coping, I've stopped exercising, relaxing and being in the moment. Today I choose (thank you Lex!) to make different choices. After a night of no sleep I have no option but to slow down, rest, reach out and restore myself. Xxx

LillyPet Tue, Oct 20th 2015 @ 7:48am

I feel for what you went through Debs. When I read what it made you realise, "A-men!" Popped into my mind and I'm not even religious! It's so good that our bodies tell us when things are wrong and what we need. Wishing you a restful peaceful day. LPxx

Sally Tue, Oct 20th 2015 @ 8:59am

Rest up, Debs. It makes all the difference. Good luck.

Debs Tue, Oct 20th 2015 @ 9:35am

Thanks girls, I'm crying again now - I just feel so low and anxious today and like I'll never stop crying! I know looking at my Moodscope scores that I have some good days but when life is like it is today I can't see the wood for the trees. I used to be such a happy person - always grabbing life, travelling, learning, having fun and now I'm an anxious mess. I took my son to nursery this morning and then came home thinking how he deserves so much better... he deserves a happy mum full of life ;-(( I'm so sorry, I sound like I'm having a pity-party for one, I'm just so tired of trying to be well all the time, its so exhausting xx

Frankie Tue, Oct 20th 2015 @ 10:39am

Morning Debs Maybe crying is what your body needs this morning ... a release of tension, an expression of exhaustion, to grieve properly for the person you were and how you perceive yourself now ... I think too that when we have children, it is entirely natural to become less care-free - for me being a mother really awakened me to the fragility of life. Maybe that is Mother Nature's way of ensuring that mothers protect their babies and little children. A dear friend gave me the phrase of "tears of healing", which I found really helpful and which helped me to feel less guilty about the (many!) days spent crying. Maybe today you are choosing to listen properly to your body for the first time in a long while. And maybe you can nurture yourself with your son - how about building a den with blankets and cushions and snuggling up together with some books or a favourite story CD or even DVD? I know that my girls would have benefitted if I had done this more often instead of pretending all is well and keeping a hectic schedule. This is a phase which will pass, like clouds in the sky ... Sending you lots of hugs, dear Debs Frankie x

susan Tue, Oct 20th 2015 @ 11:53am

Oh Debs, i'd be willing to bet my life that you are a wonderful mum, and just the very one that your little boy needs. Parenting can be so exhausting in itself (nevermind all the other life stuff)....and there are many ups and downs even for mums who don't suffer depression so you've got even more reason to be proud of how you are handling things. Be gentle with yourself today. Smiling Debs will return. Hug. xx

the room above the garage Tue, Oct 20th 2015 @ 12:30pm

Debs, my answer has to be short today. I love rock bottom and sometimes wish for it to come. It's there you plant roots and begin to grow again, a marvellous feeling! You may be just a thin root right now but you will split and grow and multiply until you have a solid foundation again. Rock bottom is good! Take it! Now cry and cry and cry because that gets the chemicals out. Write off today. Put it away. Tomorrow is new. Get out your photos of your sons growth so far...he didn't do it without you. You've got this xxx.

Debs Tue, Oct 20th 2015 @ 5:12pm

Oh girls, you are such beautiful beautiful souls to offer support the way you do. I cried some more reading your messages - you have propped me up like a set of comfortable pillows. Frankie - I love the idea of healing tears - I often beat myself up for crying as much as I do but I spoke to a friend this morning who reminded me that being a sensitive person is no bad thing and can be a gift if used wisely. Susan - thank you for reminding me that parenting is exhausting. I never knew how exhausting it could be and I am publicly declaring I need more support! So, babysitters and childminders are on my list of people to call when I feel a little stronger. I also need to build my boundaries with my little boy's dad as he often comes at me like a speeding train and fires off lists of things to discuss, do; updates required. As a sensitive soul I recoil as if ducking bullets. RATG - your way with language just floors me. Its too exquisite (ironically) for words. The idea of planting roots again and growing anew feels good. I can keep reinventing and coming back stronger can't I? What a day, what a day.... am deeply moved that this type of compassion exists in the world. Thank you for being who you are xxxx

Eva Tue, Oct 20th 2015 @ 8:01am

Hi Frankie, really valuable to review and take account of your achievements and what works for you. This could be my list. I am taking on quality relaxation time as a challenge, I have a very busy schedule but after the year I have had my physical resources are starting to give out and I need to recharge it's a tough decision and I don't know how it's going to play out. But it needs to happen. Thanks for the summation, looking forward to part 2.

Frankie Tue, Oct 20th 2015 @ 10:42am

Morning Eva I know that one reason for my breakdown was my refusal to heed the warning signs my body was sending me - it was a tough lesson to learn: quality relaxation is a must, not a treat. Good luck! Frankie

LillyPet Tue, Oct 20th 2015 @ 8:03am

Morning Frankie, what a lovely way to start the day!
Today I Tues ( thanks from me too Lex!) to live in the moment "more fully" and not allow any interruptions to hang around in my mind. You've made it more clear that meditation or anything similar is actually a rest. Today I will choose to take a rest ( ratg's brain holiday!) to recharge. Hmmm...maybe we're like batteries that literally NEED recharging.
Thank you for my Chooseday Frankie! LP xx

Frankie Tue, Oct 20th 2015 @ 10:44am

Hello LillyPet (love the name!) Yes, our bodies DO need recharging - if we ignore this, we can fall even further (see my reply to Debs). Good luck! Frankie x

Hopeful One Tue, Oct 20th 2015 @ 8:35am

Hi Frankie- I reckon you have cracked it with that inspiring list. Keep going. I am one of the birds in your slip stream benefiting from the lift..!

Sally Tue, Oct 20th 2015 @ 9:02am

What a nice turn of phrase, Hopeful One. You have a lovely way with words.

Frankie Tue, Oct 20th 2015 @ 10:58am

Morning Hopeful One What a lovely image (Sally is right - thank-you Sally!) I have quoted you in Part 2 ... Frankie

susan Tue, Oct 20th 2015 @ 11:28am

Hi Frankie. This is a great list. I'm sure we've all read or heard these things referred to over the years, but the continuous emphasis by Moodscopers who speak from experience really has driven home the essential truth of them. Can't ignore them anymore! Great to see them listed like this, thanks! xx

Frankie Tue, Oct 20th 2015 @ 12:09pm

You are very welcome susan; Moodscopers have been there for me in my (many!) hours of need - it is lovely to return the favour ... Frankie xx

the room above the garage Tue, Oct 20th 2015 @ 12:22pm

Frankie you always sound to calm and serene. Tell me the essence I need for that... :-)
I know I am missing points 4 and 5 and that has been my downfall this time. Paying heed and thank you x.

the room above the garage Tue, Oct 20th 2015 @ 12:23pm

'so' not 'to'

Frankie Tue, Oct 20th 2015 @ 12:55pm

Hello RATG

Calm and serene ... hmmm ... I have my moments!
It is a daily choice that I make ... and it has taken years to learn ... I feel another blog coming on!

Frankie x

The Gardener Tue, Oct 20th 2015 @ 1:12pm

Had just started seriously thinking reply to blog - then phone call from respite - husband most unwell - now awaiting ambulance - collecting paperwork, dealing with house sale, hotting up, finding knitting (best occupation in hospital) eating! seems selfish, but never know where next meal coming from dashing round hospitals. Watching husband virtually giving up - no idea what is going on - keeping calm most vital thing possible at the moment.

Frankie Tue, Oct 20th 2015 @ 2:07pm

Sending you gentle smiles and strengthening thoughts, dear Gardener; it is not selfish to eat, it is SO essential - knitting sounds a really good idea ... Frankie

Mary Tue, Oct 20th 2015 @ 3:25pm

TG - I look out for your updates every day. Know that we're always here to listen. Thinking of you. Looking after your own well being is never wrong as you have to be strong and well for your husband.In the army they say eat when you can, sleep when you can and - erm - visit the lavatory whenever you can (rephrased to protect sensibilities). You are in your own warzone now - you have a duty to care for yourself as much as you are able.

Mary Tue, Oct 20th 2015 @ 3:28pm

Frankie - these are hard lessons. I keep thinking that I am lazy. Then I try to do something and realise that I am still not strong enough to do anything. It's so hard to rest. It's been nearly two months - well, forty days. Even Jesus in the wilderness didn't have to do more than 40 days! And for everything who's been in the pit for much longer than I then sorry for sounding like I'm whining about nothing. I'll stop now. Back to the sofa then....

Frankie Tue, Oct 20th 2015 @ 4:21pm

Mary, you are NOT lazy! I do not suffer from depression on a regular basis, but I do have a chronic fatigue condition, thanks to which I have had to learn patience and acceptance of myself as I am now, and not the fit, active superwoman that I used to be ... Yes, hard lessons indeed, and one of my frustrations used to be the feeling that I was having to relearn the same lessons again and again ... but we both know, don't we, that all things pass, and this too shall pass ... Hugs Frankie

Frankie Tue, Oct 20th 2015 @ 4:23pm

P.S. Mary, I've just read your reply to the Gardener - now why do the words pot, kettle and black come to mind ...? (!!!) Frankie x

Mary Tue, Oct 20th 2015 @ 5:42pm

Oh dear. You are quite right. always easier to give sound advice than to accept it oneself. Thank you Frankie!

The Gardener Tue, Oct 20th 2015 @ 8:02pm

Just having another look at your Blog, Frankie - which is almost a recipe for living. Sensible living came to a stop. Husband 'collapsed'. Ambulance came, I followed. Sat in emergency for 2 hours, no news. Anyway. Young doc virtually threw my husband out - he COULD walk, nothing wrong with him except his head which has told him to stop eating and walking. They graciously lent me a wheelchair as far as ambulance pad, I shoveled him, somehow, into car - then luckily shanghaied a TV engineer this end. BUT. Frankies blog. I AM accepting myself, with great difficulty - but 'sufficient to the day is the evil thereof' isn't terribly practical at the moment. Small pleasures - few, today, but lovely sun, and I took my best red rose to the hospital and laid it beside me while I waited. When I took my first degree I would take the best rose in the garden and put it on the desk, saying 'well, if I don't get a good degree, I'm still a damned good gardener'. By luck, perseverance, what you will, I got both! I,too am liking my music loud - and I'm not deaf! Bach's best Toccata and Fugue on loudest (making sure the neighbours are out). Exercise, so vital, which I achieve with 'ferocious' gardening, which will disappear with winter. I bemoaned, a few days ago, the lack of walking. But, today, light has dawned. I refused to get a wheelchair on the grounds that if 'hubby' knew it was there he would make no effort of his own. Now I know he will never walk to any sense again. So, pharmacy tomorrow, hire wheel chair, then it's back to church, restaurant, bar, up the high street, down the river - I aim to prove if someone can get travel-sick in a wheelchair pushed too fast. Under all this bravado is a pretty upset and seriously challenged lady, but Frankie has set targets which I would have set for myself, so Ta very much.

Frankie Tue, Oct 20th 2015 @ 8:50pm

Evening Gardener and thank-you for updating us. Wishing you the best of luck with the wheel-chair ... and if I had a magic wand I would wave it over you! Sending cyber hugs instead. Frankie

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