Thursday, July 30, 2009

Girl Talk: Relaxation

I had big plans to participate in GTT last week. I even started the draft of a post about my weird quirks. But then I realized I'm not just idiosyncratic, I'm completely insane. The other participants might be writing about the odd foods they like whereas I would be discussing my complusive need to wash my hands after a meal because I feel like my hands must smell like food and then if I get in my car my steering wheel will smell like food and it won't bother me then, but it will bother me the next time I drive because what if it makes my hands smell THEN when I haven't eaten anything? Just, for instance.

So. Skipping onward to this week's topic: how do I unwind?

I have come to realize that I'm kind of an anxious person. "Kind of" being a generous understatement. I worry. I obsess. I worry obsessively. I obsess about worrying. I overthink. I overanylize. I overreact. Combine these natural tendencies with, oh I don't know, a stressful academic regimen, emotional trauma, or relationship woes and you've got a recipe for disaster!

Here are some things that help me be less anxious and a more enjoyable human being.
  1. Going out to a movie. Two hours where I can concentrate on some ficticious story with nobody talking while eating snacks? Yes, please.
  2. Running on the treadmill while watching horrible mindless reality TV such as the Real Housewives, MTV's True Life, or anything on TLC.
  3. Taking a benadryl and going to sleep. I have allergies, so it's allowed!
  4. A HOT bath. If I'm really feeling anxious it helps to have a trashy magazine or the TV on in the background.
  5. Cleaning my house while listening to Friends DVDs. This is because I'm a student. Housework = more fun that homework.
  6. Grocery shopping. I'm sure this won't always feel "fun" but at this time in my life, I enjoy wandering around a store thinking of things I might like to eat.
  7. Talking on the phone with a girlfriend.
  8. Having a beer or a mixed drink. More than one or two and I get all heart poundy and nervous and it is no longer unwinding but becomes winding UP.
  9. Driving while listening to music.
  10. Being in an environment with a lot of kids and/or other loud, interesting people. You know, where the food is good but the focus isn't on me.
  11. Taking a shower and crying.
  12. Getting... you know, intimate.
  13. Medicating.
For a moment I actually considered breaking these into separate categories: (a) things that relax me after a regularly stressful day versus (b) things that help me unwind when I'm HIGHLY stressed out. But for now I think I'll just say that some of these methods work better than others and just leave it at that.