Happy (almost) Fourth of July! Independence Day! Woo! My favorite song to listen to during this time of year is “Drunk Americans” by Toby Keith. It’s more about how we are all Americans rather than drinking! 😂 It reminds me that we can all laugh and get along, rather than constantly fight and point out our differences, in our country that has a lot to be proud of.
Many people during this time of year are going on vacation. This may mean a great time or a time of boredom and loneliness. Sometimes, even when we are surrounded by people we love and who love us back, we can feel lonely and in darkness, making it hard to enjoy our relaxation time. I’m trying to discover ways to combat loneliness, as it is something I struggle with often.
To combat loneliness and own today, I have been pushing myself to communicate in uncomfortable social situations. Sometimes, my lonely/distant and anxious feelings prevent me from doing things as “small” as making a phone call to order food or make a reservation to “bigger” things like talking to someone new or being vulnerable and expressing what I want or need in my relationships/friendships. I can get anxious or uncomfortable socially often, making it hard for me to continue a conversation, look someone in the eye, express how I feel, and be confident in who I am and the way I look. I have never been diagnosed with social anxiety, but I do notice these tendencies of mine, and I can only imagine how people who are diagnosed and suffer more intensely must feel. It can be a very lonely experience, even when you are surrounded by people.
Owning today is about taking the steps to do the little things that make you uncomfortable and eventually, getting to the point where you can speak your mind and show who you are. Push yourself and do your best not to think about what others may think of you. (Easy, right?)
In the light of the Fourth, I would also like to pay special attention to those suffering from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). While fireworks are absolutely beautiful and fun to watch, they may trigger horrifying, traumatizing memories to veterans or other trauma survivors. Please be aware of where you are starting up your fireworks, and please be there for anyone you see suffering. They might be feeling extra lonely, too.
We can own today by being there for others. We can own today by calling a hotline if needed, easing your own or someone else’s panic or anxie attack, and just showing people you love them.
Have an amazing week and Fourth of July, if you’re celebrating! ❤🎉🇺🇸
- Mental Healthline: +1-877-764-0786
- Crisis Text Line: Text CONNECT to 741741