Why I hate myself today 

I’m trying to hate myself less today, for being a total muck up in everything I do. I was late this morning, went to the wrong office, forgot a colleagues laptop and handled a sensitive issue quite poorly which has upset a good friend.

I feel like I just need to run away and wipe the slate clean. Find a new role to start again. But running is the easiest thing. To be honest, it makes me so sad and anxious that if I was secure financially I would have run already.

I wonder if I will ever just be a ‘normal’ person that no one thinks badly of. My rational brain says that everyone can forget things from time to time and it’s really not a big deal or a judgement on your ability. And even my team responded in a way to show it was a total ‘non issue’.

Unfortunately my brain said that people must think I’m a total mess, a drain on the team, someone that brings no benefit at all and that just causes drama.

Today I hate HATE my depression and OCD. If I didn’t have it I wouldn’t have been late, if I wasn’t so anxious my brain would have functioned more and I would have remembered the laptop and which office to go to. If my OCD and depression didn’t exist then there would have been no sensitive situation for me to handle poorly. And if my OCD and depression didn’t exist I wouldn’t be so paranoid and anxious about being a burden. I’m still seeking reassurance by sending apology messages to my friend which is probably just making things 10 times worse!

Today I hate my OCD and depression for making me anxious about forgetting the laptop again tomorrow morning when that moment hasn’t even come yet. If I can forget it when I put it on top of my own bag which I didn’t forget then what more can I possibly do to make sure I take the damn thing!

Aside from just hating myself today, I hate my OCD and depression. I hate it for making me have to acknowledge that it’s there and tell employers, health professionals, friends and family. I hate that I have to tell them and wait to be judged which happens over 50% of the time.

Did you know that mental health is more common than cancer and heart disease. More common than arthritis and diabetes. The success rate for treating heart disease is more successful than treatment for mental health. I hate that I have to know this fact instead of some interesting fact about the stars.

I wish that people understood mental health more and knew that I have no choice but to be who I am. I hate that I feel the need to justify that sometimes I do struggle and it’s not my fault, I’m doing all I can.

I hate HATE my OCD and depression today for being so debilitating and making me hate myself.

I’m just grateful that my husband loves me and my craziness even when I can’t.

XxX

Update: I refuse to be beaten! I won’t forget the laptop if I can’t forget my shoes 😂🙈

I have a theory 

I have a theory that if the working world worked less hours we would actually be more productive and healthier. I’ve always wondered how the 5 day working week came about and who ever thought it would be a good idea. How have we all naturally accepted and migrated to this notion.

Imagine if everyone worked a 4 day week or even 3.5 day week. We would have more time for ourselves and our families. Enjoying and having more time for our personal life would make us resent our working life less.

I have previously worked compressed hours. Full time hours in a 4 day week. I always made a point to leave on time and I always took my full hour lunch. I was actually more productive in these 4 days than I was in 5 and I believe that if my hours were less I would be even more productive.

How many of us procrastinate on a daily basis? When you have a goal to focus on, a deadline each day to leave on time and go home, and your reward is just that ‘going home’ we can be so much more productive. If we go into work of the mind that ‘today is going to be a long day’ then it will be, you won’t send that email now because well you’re here all night and you have plenty of time!

Of course there are those of us that really are overworked. A very close friend of mine works extremely long hours and works incredibly hard with very little procrastination. I see the effect this has on her and the stress it causes not only mentally but physically too. How did she get to this point? And yet others of the same level and role of her, often paid more, are working less. It’s that old saying ‘victim of your own success’. We need to learn to put our work down and come back to it and if that means deadlines are missed then there is a problem with the process and organisation and not the person.

Sweden have recently wised up to this and reduced weekly working hours to increase productivity and well being.

Imagine if we all only worked 3 days. There would be more jobs available for others. Yes we would be paid less but everyone would be so the cost of living would go down. Everyone would be much healthier and would cost the health service less and the world would be a much happier place generally. 

People would have more time to learn and develop them selves. Time to give back and volunteer. Time to see their children.

I know my plan will be full of holes but it’s a nice thought isn’t it?

How did we get where we are and where are we going? 

In a few weeks I move to a 4 day week and I can’t wait. 

Feeling optimistic

XxX

The Carriage of Anxiety

Ergh, train time. One of the worst parts of my day is train time. I always get the same train at exactly the same time every day. The same carriage, the same door, the same seat. I time the train just right so that I get the empty one. If I’m there early I watch everyone running for the train packed out with people. Little do they know if they waited back a few moments an almost empty train would be right along.

Well today I’m late and I don’t know how it happened. Just by 7 minutes but that to me is super late. There is no way I’m going to make my usual train which I always ALWAYS get and I’m slightly terrified.

If I don’t get a seat on the train I often have panic attacks or have to get off to stop myself from fainting. If it’s a shorter journey and I’m with friends it’s not so bad but I still can’t shake that anxious dizzy feeling no matter what. I end up in cold sweats feeling sick and completely drained.

I get to the train platform and it’s relatively busy, not super busy but busy enough. I stand in my usual spot but there is a girl already there waiting. Perhaps this is her ‘usual spot’ at this time of day. I don’t know. I’m not used to this alien time. I would normally see the same families and individuals travelling to school and work every day and we all understand where each other stand and wait for that train. We don’t stand in each other’s space and we all know about the secret empty train.

In this alien time I don’t know who has right of way and who stands where. Anyone else would just find a darn spot to stand in and get on with it! I unfortunately have to stand as close to my spot as I can. This poor girl on the platform must think I’m such a weirdo. Of all the empty space on the platform I choose to come and stand right next to her. Yup I would think I was a bit strange too.


In the distance I see a scary sight, my ‘stalker’ a man who has been following me on the trains for the past year. Police have taken him off the train in the past and issued him a harassment warning. I haven’t seen him since that warning but now that I’m late he is here. Luckily he stays away. 

Many people don’t realise that people with mental health problems are much more likely to be victims of crime – people often think they’re the perpetrators! Well sadly I’m an easy target as it’s easy to figure out my routine. I’ll post another blog at some point about all 4 of my stalkers at different times of life.


A train arrives, it’s not empty (of course it’s not it’s rush hour and the secret train has gone). My brain is now having this crazy battle with itself. Do I get on? Do I wait and take a chance that the next one might be empty? Even though the closer we get to rush hour the more manic it will be?

The doors stop in front of me and I step on. I kind of have to as others are waiting behind me. I move down the carriage to stand by the seats. I always do my best to stand in an area with as many seats as possible. I figure there is more possibility of someone standing and me getting a seat if I’m next to a large number of them. 

I watch everyone’s moves discreetly. Who is folding up and putting their newspaper away ready to stand? Who is picking up their bags? There have been times where I have spent entire journeys on edge waiting for this to happen and not a single person has got up. In the past I have had to ask for a seat between stations before I fall down. 

So now I’m standing in the carriage, hoping, wishing someone gets off. I know the stations people are most likely to get off at so I’m hyper vigilant at these stations. All this hypersensitivity is really draining and heightens my anxiety.

And oh my goodness someone is getting off! Close to me is an older lady, not elderly but old enough. I worry if I should let her take the seat first. What kind of a complete bitch would people think I am if I sit down without giving her the option? But despite her age, what people don’t understand is that I’m so much less able to stand on this train than she is. (Presuming she doesn’t have a non visible disability too).

Luckily she doesn’t go for the seat, she’s not even interested. Now I’m sitting the fun begins. I’m relived I have a seat but I’m already feeling sick now and the motion of the train doesn’t help so this sickness is sadly going to stay for the entire journey.


I’m on edge now because every time a child gets on, or an elderly person or particularly a pregnant lady, I’m internally begging that they don’t stand near me. I literally could not stand up right now without fainting. This isn’t just a ‘mental’ thing but a physical thing. It’s incredible how much influence your mind has over the body.
So now I will spend the rest of my journey on edge hoping I don’t have to be the one that hides my face when they get on and wishing that someone else offers first. The sad thing is that my disability can’t be seen and it’s not obvious and unfortunately this world does judge people by the way they look and appear. 

‘You look absolutely fine’ I’ve heard in the past.

I’m glad I’m sitting now but I can’t wait for this journey to be over so that I can shake this sickness and not feel on edge every waking moment. But whatever happens I know I’ll make it through and that’s a positive start.

Hopeful on a Monday.

XxX

Update: in my haste this morning and panic I’ve actually gone to the wrong office. So after the embarrassment of logging on and suddenly realising I should be somewhere else, I’m now back on the trains again! Wish me luck!

The Birth of Openness

This week has been pretty hellish for me, I suppose that’s what finally pushed me to start Diary of a ‘Mad’ girl. Over the past year I have learnt to become more and more open about my mental health, something that I have found to be particularly helpful when it comes to coping with any anxieties or depressive moments I may have. Being open about who you truly are and how you really feel can be completely liberating and quite inspiring. Strangely, I can often find more courage when opening up to strangers. Perhaps it’s because I don’t have a ‘reputation’ to uphold or a ‘character’ to protect. What you see is what you get. If a stranger knows my darkest secrets I won’t have to see their eyes everyday looking at me and knowing my struggle. Of course family I see everyday so that’s a different story.

I’ve really come a long way in the past year, just being me. sadly this week I found myself being put back into my box, knocked back a century or two and silenced with gaffa tape. My ability to be open to the world was completely stripped from me and so too was one of my biggest coping mechanisms – openess. What do you do when your told you’re not allowed to discuss your mental health? And with no reason given for the need to be silent on the topic other than ‘not everyone is ready to hear about mental health’. Well excuse me whilst I ask all those with visible disabilities to cover themselves with blankets because people just aren’t ready to hear about disabilities. What outrage would ensue? So why then is mental health still treated so differently to physical health. My brain has an actual physical condition, a chemical imbalance and yet I must act as though this disability does not exist.

If I had a heart condition would you ask me to run up 5 flights of stairs to deliver a letter? Would you expect me to disclose my health difficulty to you so that I could take the lift instead? Or would you prefer I keep quiet and die of a heart attack? If the reasonable adjustments you make for someone with a physical disability allow them to function better, then what reasonable adjustments can you make for me when I’m suffering from a chronic illness that I’m unable to discuss?

With so much change going on in the world, both for the better and worse, I refuse to remain silent on the issue of mental health. If we campaign for cancer why is mental health any different? I will be regularly sharing my experiences with mental health, positive, negative, the wins and my struggles. I hope that Diary of a ‘Mad’ Girl will help others that face mental health difficulties, friends and family and those that have no idea what it’s all about but are willing to learn more and spread the message.

I look forward to taking this journey of openness with you and will forever be grateful for the time you spend reading and sharing Diary of a ‘Mad’ Girl.

Thank you

XxX