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LIFE SELF CARE STRESS

How are you really doing?

Monday, March 22, 2021

Hey you!

I hope you’re doing well! But you know, even if you’re not, that’s okay. I haven’t been doing very well myself. Today’s a good day, but they’ve been quite rare lately. As those of you who know me for longer know, there’s no reason to worry, I do have help with my troubles and I’m working on them. I have a lot going on that I don’t feel like discussing with everyone, so I like to keep the image of me happy & polished – as most of us do. I don’t do it because I’d be ashamed of not being okay, but just because just like I try in real life as much as I can, on my social media I want to focus on the positive (my blog is the realest exception haha) to cheer myself up.

It’s been a long year of pandemic related troubles. It’s been a long year of living in a society where we’re always told to achieve more, do better, and make it look easier. It’s been a long year of living in a world where we’re constantly over-stimulated by signals from social media, constantly reachable and constantly subconsciously comparing our lives with those of the others. It’s been a long year of studying or working or what ever you’re doing, even if it’s just occasionally getting out of bed. Damn that sounds exhausting.

On top of that exhaustion, some of us also have health problems, may they be physical or mental, visible or invisible. On top of that some of us have traumas to overcome, troubles with their loved ones or any other type of problem that we don’t have any idea of. Gosh we’re so strong for being able to carry on.

A friend of mine, who knows about some of my troubles, asked me a while ago: How are you really doing? I love that friend and I love that she specified her supposedly small talk-related question – she knew that I put on a brave face even when I may have dried my tears just a half a minute ago. So, I’m now here to ask you all – how are you really doing?

If you’re really doing good, I’m so glad for you. If you’re really not doing so good, please know that you’re not alone. When you look outside you only see the outside; people putting on their best clothes, their best set of makeup, their best pictures and their best fake smile. I’m not telling you to start questioning everything and everyone, but I’m telling you to remember that you don’t see everything on the outside. I can not repeat it enough – Everyone has a story to tell. Be kind. Always. And the same goes for you – be kind to yourself!

Whether you’re doing good or less good, please do something nice just for yourself. And stop thinking that everyone else has it better than you! Or on the contrary – stop thinking that you can’t feel sad because people have it worse than you. Every problem matters, and problems can not be compared. What matters is that you try and work on your problems, and that you don’t let them affect how you treat others.

I keep hearing from so many people how they’re really not doing good, and yet if you wouldn’t really talk with them you’d never know. People, you’re so strong and I admire you so much just for getting out of bed every morning! I think we should start a club of supporting each other – we all struggle sometimes, it’s okay to struggle and it’s okay to talk about it (if you want to). Let’s just all remember that we’re not alone in this, even if a pandemic sometimes makes us feel like that. Every cloud has a silver lining, and the sun will come out even if it won’t do it today.

 

Sending you a big hug and lots of cheek kisses x

Love,

Anna

 

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LIFE RANDOM STRESS

20 things I’ve been / will be doing in 2020

Sunday, May 3, 2020

So I found this old blog post that I apparently never published, and me being me here I am publishing my Happy New Year post since I think it’s always better late than never. And also since I started this year by listing things I promised myself I’d do this year, I thought it’d be nice to go through the list and see how well it’s going. And maybe, just maybe (don’t want to jinx anything here) the  worst worst of corona (obviously not at all the whole corona itself so let’s keep washing our hands) could be over, so we could all consider the end of some restrictions as a new year again? And please let’s let it be a ‘year’ when we improve on how we treat each other, the planet and ourselves. And my almost mid year resolution is that I’ll try to be on time a little better! I will report back (sooner or later). Without further ado; my thoughts from before this crazy year started;

 

 

New Year, New me? Not so much. I think we’re all pretty great the way we are. Unless you’re evil. Then you should seriously consider a new you.

Instead of becoming a new me, I’d like to dedicate the next decade on experiencing new things. That includes gaining new experiences, meeting new people, restarting some lost habits and finding new reasons to be happy. Since it is the year 2020, I thought that a list of 20 things would be quite reasonable.

I’m sorry about the long blog absence – again. Except that I’m not that sorry. I needed some time. First I needed some time to get into my dream university. Then I needed some time to say bye to my Finnish life. Then I needed some time to get used to my new, Dutch life. And most of all, I needed some time to get better and to find help.

I loved last year. As mentioned, I got into my dream university, which was a pretty big deal. I gained some amazing experiences, I had some amazing travels, I met some amazing people, I went to some amazing parties, and overall had a lot of amazing days. But I also had a lot of really bad days. Those of you who know me or have been reading my blog for a while you know it’s not the first time I’m saying this. But this time it was different. It’s like I was smart enough to understand what’s going on, and for a while I was able to help myself, but then I just got locked in my panic attacks and depressed days and couldn’t get out anymore. That’s when I reached for my support net; all the dear people in my life. And I got help. Most of all, I got strength just by knowing that they’re there, and I managed to get myself to get some proper help. So now for the first time in my life I finally have a referal to a psychologist and I’m so happy about it that just getting the referal made my life a lot easier already. The help would probably make it even more easy, but I’m not that far yet. It’s one of the 20 things tho.

Anyway, I’m back. Again. And this time I feel like I’m here to stay. Both in the blog and hopefully spiritually – feeling like you’re floating away sucks so I’m not interested in repeating that. Blogging gives me so much that I don’t even know why I’ve let it go again. Also I’m so excited to share life as a medical student, that I think that if any time in my life would be perfect for blogging (apart from the exchange year that properly started this all), it’s these 6 years. I hope that it’ll work out. I’m feeling quite positive about it.

To start my latest comeback here’s the promised list of 20 things I will be doing this coming year on top of doing more of the things I enjoy in general . As everything in life, new year’s resolutions should be something that make you happy by improving your life in one way or another, and that’s what my list is all about. So I consider this an idea list – no promises made. So if in 365 days I still have some bits unfinished, that’s quite alright. This year let’s all be a little kinder to ourselves, we deserve it.

    1. Eat mussels
    2. Read more books 
    3. Go to London again
    4. Avoid dairy even more efficiently
    5. Go to at least 1 new place
    6. Blog more
    7. Make pancakes more often
    8. Learn another conversation in Hawaiian
    9. Play violin again
    10. Sing a little more
    11. Get back to dancing
    12. Cook more
    13. Bake muffins
    14. Send Holiday cards
    15. Send postcards
    16. Get at least 1 moomin mug to the Netherlands
    17. Wear orange
    18. Drink more water
    19. Save more money
    20. Sleep a lot

Well, being halfway before it’s the middle of the year ain’t too bad! I’ll improve on the rest later, but oh boy how much joy these 10 items have already given me. Maybe I’ll add making lists of things that make me happy and I should do more regularly, because these lists themselves make me happy! I hope you’re also doing things that make you happy and that you’re still staying safe and healthy! Take care xx

 

Love, Anna

LIFE STRESS

Hey body, how are you doing?

Thursday, April 9, 2020

 



This peace and quiet that – funnily enough – this chaos brings on us has given at least me a lot more space to listen to other things than the constant buzzing in my brain (it’s still there, but it’s reduced). One of those things -among birds and other lovely little spring noises – is listening to my own body. Truth be told, I may have gotten my inspiration mostly from Kiira Korpi, since I just finished – and absolutely loved – her biography. Never have I ever identified myself with so someone so deeply, even thought our worlds are extremely different (despite of me starting the same path on the ice I did not get to the top of figure skating world). Reading the book and having this “extra” time has opened my eyes to the things that have only crossed my mind lately.

I have said and written how “I’ve learned to listen to my body” a few times before, and it is true – all of those times I did learn. But I didn’t yet learn enough. It’s such a long path, and even though I’ve come a long way, I still have a long way to go.

 

 

The biggest lesson I’ve gotten was to notice some of the symptoms that my body shows when I’m over exhausted. But my body has been smarter than I am – it has many ways to show the same thing and while I’ve learned to recognise many, I’ve also been blind to many. This past year I’ve gotten more panic attacks than ever, worse panic attacks than ever, and worse depression periods than I had had in a long time. Obviously I noticed that something was wrong and I proceeded into getting help, of which I’m really proud. However, I never actually obtained the offered help into my life because I was too tired or too busy (or both) to do so. Yes, this should have been an obvious sign of my exhaustion but I just couldn’t see it.

I’ve always struggled with the fact that my body shows its symptoms delayed. If I’ve had a very stressful period, my hormonal cycle is messed up once the stressful times are over. If I haven’t gotten enough sleep, my drowsiness start coming once I’ve gotten back to proper sleeping, and so on. So that’s why the fact that right now, despite of having good mental energy again, my body feels empty, drained and as if my cells didn’t have enough oxygen, is most likely a sign that I have been utterly over-exhausting myself in the recent past. I had started crying more and getting depressed days more often, but my body was still working on the adrenaline-like gasoline that it uses when trying to push through with the last bits of its strength, so I thought that I was still doing alright. Turns out, I wasn’t.

 


Why does this keep happening? Am I ever going to learn? Those two questions are in my mind and probably yours too if you happen to have been following my adventures for a while already. But I’m still hopeful – I still think that every time this happens I learn a little better, and I catch it a little earlier. Also, I absolutely love my studies and my still rather new life in the Netherlands, so I know that that’s not the cause for any of this – if anything it’s only made me better at handling myself. However, I know this still isn’t the way it’s supposed to go and I know that I should REALLY do something about it, and I will. I’ve been doing little tasks to clear my mind and unwinding the tightly woven web of thoughts and tasks kin my head, and I’m also looking into the best way of getting professional help. This year was the first time that I actually got a referral to a psychologist and I almost cried, I was so happy that both me, and the world were finally taking this seriously. It gives me hope by both proving to me that help is available and also by proving to me that I can actually ask for it, despite of me usually being terrible at asking for help.

 

Anyway, the point of this wasn’t to once again give an update on my mental health, but more to think out loud how great it is that this very sad and draining situation can actually also maybe teach us a few things. My tired body is telling me that it was going through too much, and that it needs rest now and it wants to know that it won’t have to go through the same drill again. My tired body appreciates every moment I spend outside, every moment when I forget about all my stressors and focus on something completely else, every moment I can actually, genuinely focus in reading a book (it’s been hard with a constantly buzzing brain) and every positive thought that I now get a lot more often since there’s some space for them. My body is also really grateful for the exercise I give it, and equally grateful for the late mornings I allow it since there’s no morning lectures. It’s not yet working the way I want to – I’d like it to have more energy for studying and other productive things I should be doing, but I know that I can’t keep fighting against my body, but that I need to make compromises with it for it to want to work with me once it’s doing better again. What is your body telling you?

 

As always, take care and love those bodies of yours – they’re magnificent creations (writing this was my break from studying anatomy and everything I read just further on proves that, in case you need any extra proof). xx

 

Love, Anna

RANDOM STRESS

30 PHYSICAL REASONS WHY NOT TO STRESS

Saturday, December 9, 2017

As I’ve said, I’m an expert when it comes to stress. I also know what it can cause to your body, since I’ve had the symptoms under my very own skin. Of course, once again, every one is different and every one might have different symptoms of stress, but here you have a few that are actually proven to be true. 30 examples of what stress causes to your body and mind, a.k.a. 30 reasons why to take better care of yourself so that you won’t get here. I know, it’s easier said than done. And the last thing I want to do is to scare you! But maybe reading this will help you realize that you too have to take extra good care of yourself for a while – your body is precious, value it ❣️

1. Headache< strong>2. Hairloss<<<<<<
ten happens to me quite slowly or even after my actual stress is over, but nonetheless is very annoying.

3. Insomnia< strong>4. Irregularity on your period cycle<<<<<<<
nnoying.

5. Overall exhaustness

6. Nausea

7. Grumpyness
Sorry Mom, Dad and my friends. I hope you know I don’t mean any of it.

8. Strange hormonal activity
What explains the weird period cycles, weird mood changes and many other things. To put in short; these kind of hormonal changes (mainly caused by cortisol) are not good for your body especially on the long term.

9. Weakness in your limbs
y comes mostly from the insomnia & headache – plus having tons of things on your mind definitely makes it harder to focus even on physical activities.

10. Frequent urination
Who wants to run to the toilet every 15 minutes?

11. Dizziness

12. Ringing or Buzzing voices

Don’t worry, you’re (probably) not going crazy.

13. Unpunctuality

Aha, so I’ll just blame my next unpunctual cases on stress.. kidding, I’m just sadly a very unpunctual person with stress or not.

14. Low level of the immunity system – frequent colds, herpes sores and infections

15. Reduced productivity

17. Depression

It does get better, I promise.

18. Anxiety and/or panic attacks

19. Chest pain, rapid pulse

20. Unexplained or frequent “allergy” attacks

21. Rashes, itching

22. Increased or decreased appetite

And hey, chocolate is (a proved fact!) good medicine for stress.

23. Heartburn

24. Problems of digestion system

25. Excess worry, guilt & nervousness

Just breathe and be more merciful to yourself, you’re not to blame for all the bad in the world. And you’ll do just fine.

26. Concentrating difficulties

27. Difficulty in making decisions

If you can’t make the decision, make it another time. You can’t force it.

28. Trouble learning new information

Again, try another time.

29. Feeling overwhelmed & overloaded

 

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