Bitter & Sweet

The woman was bitter,

it danced around her lips.

The girl was sweet,

she walked with swinging hips.

 

For a time they conversed,

with a hint of uncomfortable air.

Sweet kept the peace

and Bitter’s nostrils were in flare.

 

Over time it became quite clear

that they could not get along.

Bitter was full of venom

and Sweet was full of song.

 

Sweet exuded empathy

for the hate in Bitter’s heart.

Bitter exuded aggression,

tearing Sweet apart.

 

Sweet changed her name to Stress,

she could not take the pain,

that Bitter insisted giving,

leaving Sweet in the rain.

 

Just as Sweet changed to Stress,

Bitter began to change too.

Her heart was blackened beyond repair,

then Evil emerged anew.

 

Evil reduced Stress to Nothing.

At least that’s how she felt.

Evil took pleasure in knowing,

she had one more under belt.

 

Then Nothing began to realise

she could not sink further.

The only way was up.

And Evil was in for murder.

 

Nothing changed her name again,

she emerged to the sun as Hope.

As Evil saw her changing,

she knew she would not gloat.

 

For Hope is neither above or below,

she stands alone instead.

And as she grew taller,

she looked down at Evil’s head.

 

Evil changed her name again,

she became the face of Pity.

For she knew that her heart

was no longer pretty.

 

Rather than change to Remorse,

Pity wallowed in her life.

Now every day in every way

she seeks to cause some strife.

 

Whilst Hope was sad at this,

She did not dwell for long.

For Hope found the world was better

when she sang her old Sweet song.

Purpose

The purpose of the well intentioned is to appear to do good
Understand the pain of others and help them out the mud

Kindness is prevalent in the moment yet it is fleeting
People soon realise it’s their own problems they should be greeting

The purpose of the do-gooder, is to appear full of hope

At the same time, they pull you up they strangle you with the rope

Understanding is there when no consequence is around
But where consequence lives is where the selfish are found

The purpose of the lover is to love without condition
Deep in their heart they’re concerned only with their mission

Remorse should be shouting from the mouths filled with guilt
When the finger is pointed it’s towards me their hats will tilt

The purpose of the free is to do as they please without restrictions
Once freedom is mine I will be making some convictions

Redemption did exist until it floated out to the sea
Now it’s on the horizon for my lonely eye to see

The purpose of forgiveness is to make peace and grow in strength
So why am I weakening and everyday feeling tense

Commitment cannot exist in a world overrun with self
Sometimes you must stand to see the view from the shelf

The purpose of writing is to make sense of a jumbled mind
My jumble needs the spirit of a like-minded mind

The physical and the spiritual inhibit a different space
Maybe that is why I cannot find my peaceful place.

Are you suffering from Chronic Stress?

wp-1491043434690.jpgDo you ever feel, that if you must say, hear or feel one more thing then your brain and body will just explode out of frustration?

If yes then you have the stress.

The problem with chronic stress is that it can take some time to identify if you have got used to coping. Unless you have very close caring people around you who see the subtle changes in your mood and looks, others will attribute them to you just ‘having a bad day’, ‘being out of sorts’ or ‘having a late one’. It is quite concerning how much stress is brushed off as something minor. Even if you recognise it in yourself, you may be reluctant to make anyone aware in case they accuse you of being unable to cope or that you’re being melodramatic…it is okay to feel this way! The emotion needs to come out eventually, although it should be in a constructive way.

wp-1491042801866.png

A little bit of stress can be beneficial such as helping you run away from danger, completing tasks under pressure or making a difficult decision. It becomes an issue when it is the only emotional response you are experiencing over a prolonged period. When the body detects stress, it releases hormones and adrenaline, a fight of flight response if you will. Being stuck in this state for a long time will send your body haywire and ultimately strip your immune system of its strength.

Whilst I try to err on the side of mentioning myself in these blogs, I have experience of this unforgiving feeling. Forcing myself to cope with stress resulted in following ailments for nigh on six weeks-

*Cystic Acne- A real confidence destroyer. Scientists can only speculate why this happens but they assume the high hormone levels promote oil production. Cystic acne is deep within the skin and can take months to heal.  The face feels tender and pressurised. Picking it will make it stay, trust me.

*0-100 Irritability- Reacting to comments and situations literally faster than lighting. Shutting down negativity with aggression because you just can’t bear to hear anymore from anyone. Every noise sounding like an atomic bomb. People’s voices sounding like nails on chalk boards. ‘Burn them all!’ is my Cersei phrase of choice. FYI- If you don’t watch GOT that sentence will mean nothing to you.

wp-1491042810294.png

*Broken sleep- Sleep is my first love and if left alone with it, I can easy do a peaceful ten-twelve-hour session. Stress took this pleasure from me and said I can only have 4 hours a night…in intervals of four. Thanks.

*Unable to fall asleep- Turning off electronics, lighting incense and melts, audio books, massage, working out late, none of it helped. Sleeping for a few hours then tackling a 12-hour day just spells disaster.

*Unexplainable rash/hives- As I have resilient skin in that I can use any washing powders, soaps etc. I was surprised when I developed hives on my arms and behind my ears. If this happened to you it is your immune system telling you ‘we’re done, good luck!’. An anti-histamine will only sort it in the short term.

wp-1491042798838.png

Lethargy- Walking into the gym ready to do a heavy weights session, feeling pumped. I try to warm up and feel my body rejecting the exercise. Muscles seize up, mind clouds over and suddenly I can barely lift a dumbbell, never mind the 55kg squats I usually do. Sad and defeated I blubber my eyes out in the sauna, feeling like a big fat failure of a woman. My body and my brain had given up on me.

Migraines- These are prompted by all manner of things from lighting to food to lack of sleep. Nonetheless, it is also a characteristic of stress. Your brain is trying to force itself through the cloud of raging hormones and stress to think clearly. The blood vessels are under pressure and the stress increases. Then boom you’re in a 24 hour migraine that medication can’t penetrate.

Feeling alone- This is the worst part of chronic stress. The reality of this world is that most people are only concerned with themselves. We all have that right and I am true believer that you must look after yourself first and foremost. Nonetheless, showing kindness when someone is projecting a negative feeling can go a long way to helping them.

wp-1491042807042.png

Getting rid of chronic stress is doable if you are willing to ask for help. You also need to learn to draw the line in all aspects of your life. People pleasing, taking on too much, feeling singled out, resentful feelings, confrontations, making assumptions and all other destructive behaviour/feelings will ensure you burn yourself out. Don’t be afraid to speak up and tell people you are stressed, or if you think that they are being inappropriate and it is impacting on you. Most importantly, it is about choice. What you choose to listen to and how you choose to respond will shape your response to stress.

On some occasions, you will simply have to re-evaluate your environment and you may conclude that it needs a complete overhaul. This could be moving house, changing job, ending a relationship or cutting off toxic people. Remember that it is your right to live in peace and if you’re stressed you’re not living at all.

Take a step back, breathe and look after yourself…FIRST!

None of us are know-it-alls

You have your opinion I have mine

When I state mine you start to whine

You must entertain a thought you do not like
In case it has a bearing on what you fight

If you go in blind then you will see
the thoughts of others too clearly

Pieces of puzzles must be unearthed
For a mindset to be rebirthed

Making assumptions and jumping the gun
Destroying conversations, it’s not fun

Our pride stops us working together
Social media has cemented this forever

We’re too quick to oppose our fellow man
We’d rather break him down than take his hand

Before you’re quick to squash their view
Try to be kind and walk their shoes

Attitude counts for a lot
Don’t let your head get too hot

90% of what happens depends on how you react
Control yourself to be exact

None of us are know-it-alls
We are slaves of the system in overalls

Why you have to have different heads 

Okay so you may be wondering what this blog title is all about, or you may have got it in one. We are all wired differently when it comes to building relationships and interacting with other people. The way we are with our nearest and dearest (family, friends partner), is usually our true selves. We say and do what we want however we feel it at the time and the chips land where they may. 

wp-1477223144945.jpgThen we cart ourselves off to work and if we are smart, we put on our ‘work head’. This is the one that rises above nonsense to get stuff done and it will potentially further our careers if we use that head correctly. It is literally like playing a game. There are  many people who are not 100% happy with their employment but the ones who are, work that head like there is no tomorrow. Working the head means remaining diplomatic and polite when you are really ticked off. It is keeping personal opinions about other people to yourself. It is accepting those things that annoy you because you cannot change them. Lastly, it is about carrying out that work to the very best of your ability and perhaps doing a little more for extra credit with the boss. Many people get so wrapped up in work dramas that they govern their life and they can’t switch off when they get home. They are the serial complainers that you know will never be happy with their job, yet they have no desire to put the effort in to change their life. Adopting a work  head allows you to see your employment through an objective lens. Ultimately, you are at work to progress your personal life, so getting caught up in bitching and dramas is going to slow you down and make you hate your job. It is easy to forget that even the most senior managers have lives outside of work so if you are stressing them out with your moans, your card might get marked. My work rule is ‘hear all, see all, say nowt’.

wp-1477223435666.jpg

Another head we have is the only one we keep for the dreaded in laws meet and greet…and boy is it sweet. The only way to act is like a complete angel because your other half’s family may be looking for a reason why you’re not worthy. That is unfortunately human nature. It is easier to judge on first sight rather than spend time getting to know someone. So say your please and thank you’s, pronounce your ‘t’s’ (which is hard for Yorkshire folk!), offer to do the dishes or make the after dinner coffee. This is probably the most difficult head to use as you have to be very aware of yourself and not let the head slip. As time goes by you can slowly reveal the true sides of yourself. My only word of caution is, keep your strong opinions about serious issues to yourself. Anything that may raise an eyebrow or make them wonder  who on Earth you think you are will inevitably lead to ‘concerns’ being raised with your partner. On the other hand you may be blessed with down to earth in laws who are just so happy you love their baby. If this is you then sod what I just said and carry on with the true head.

wp-1477223908525.jpg

Now at the beginning of this post I mentioned being your true self with your friends, family and partner. However, there is another true head out there. The crazy head. Your bestie, your crew and your homeboys see this head on a weekend. It is the care free one that just lets itself loose and I doubt it is suitable for family or acquaintances. It is crucial that this head is allowed out from time to time, to reduce stress and to remind your friends how absolutely hilarious you are. Beware though, this head should never ever cross with the other heads as disaster will strike! I would also save this one for the people you trust the most. Your work head will struggle to explain crazy head antics to your parents or employer.

So there are lots of heads we have to use, far too many to talk about here. But the final one I will mention is the ‘angry head’.  When you’re upset, depressed, angry or feeling low, this one becomes our protector, our defender and our fighter. It is irrational and unpredictable. Nonetheless it exists to help us cope. We don’t choose this head. It manifest’s itself in times of stress and upset to tell us to take a step back. It does need some control though. If it is left to stew in the pot, that pot will boil over and create a big mess. So where possible, keep this head to yourself and only share it with those who really care for your wellbeing.