Tuesday, August 15, 2017


Yesterday morning I sent my husband an article that I thought it would be useful for him to read. It talked about a symptom of ADHD - impulsivity - and offered some strategies a person could use to help with that tendency.

For example, some people blurt out what they think in a business meeting for fear of forgetting the thought when they do get a chance to air their views. If such a person were to jot down the thought this would prevent the feeling of desperation to get out the thought at an inappropriate time. Hilary Clinton did this several times in her debates with Donald Trump.

In the case of a personal conversation a person might note that his or her hand is clenched as a clue to take a few deep breaths rather than talk over someone or go into a monologue, rather than to remain a conversationalist.

Last evening, there was a brief discussion about health. I think my husband mentioned a particular vitamin that he was out of, or something related to a vitamin or mineral. I assured him that I wasn't discounting what he said but that lifestyle issues were an important part of aging in a healthy way. So, the idea is to get yourself into a situation where anxiety is easily managed - eat well, exercise most days, enjoy your life and keep your body motoring along in a consistent and gentle way.

He debunked the importance of lifestyle, as he always does. That's okay. We have differing views on the matter. But, he did raise an important point. Lots of people have lots of anxiety in the form of responsibility and it doesn't do them any harm, as far as we can tell.

Of course, I happen to think that my husband's anxiety has done him a lot of harm but again that relates to the lifestyle choice of carrying his anxiety with him nearly 24/7 for a very long time. He doesn't have a healthy lifestyle balance. Anyway, I can't do much about that at this time and it's not the point of the journal entry.

It got me thinking about anxiety - the kind of anxiety that makes you feel stressed, miserable, under the gun, tired and worried - and it's a very inward thinking, non-relating sort of thing. When overly stressed it's a rare person that is sexually aroused. Stress closes down the desire for life that is abundantly available when stress is low and a person is well rested on a daily basis.

When someone is stressed they tend to not behave as well as they might,  perhaps demanding that their beliefs and ideas are most important and require all the air space; indeed,  snuffing any other ideas out. The ideal situation goes that we need to act and think sympathetically towards such people. It is, after all, some sort of anxiety showing up in a dysfunctional communication style. We are asked to walk in the other person's shoes and see into their insides. Ah, yes, the rudeness relates to anxiety!

Yet, it actually doesn't work that way after a time. Rather, the tendency becomes to realize that it is better to disengage from this dysfunctional conversation (monologue) and to keep your opinions to yourself.

When you keep your opinions to yourself, you keep yourself to yourself and in this way there is no relate-ion-ship. You remain alone, in essence protecting the relationship from combustion; rather, keeping the relationship on hold until, and if, behavior improves.

To be aware of a tendency to be impulsive and to learn the strategies that enable you to have control of any impulsivity is not only a gift to yourself but to all the other people in your life. Impulsivity drowns those people around you until one day you realize that all the people around you have their heads under the water.

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