Monday, July 11, 2016
Recently, however, I discovered a trick that helps me break out of the paralysis that can hit when worry takes over.
I ask myself what I can do to help a situation. And then I do it.
If there's nothing I can do to help a particular situation, I ask myself if there is anything else I can do to help my life in general, and then do that instead.
It stops me from feeling powerless. And the act of doing something prevents me from just sitting and worrying.
I'll share with you a couple of examples.
First, in recent heavy rain a leak sprung above one of our dining room windows (the one pictured above). Water was dripping down onto the window sill.
The stress and worry of that discovery hit me so hard, I started seeing stars. I didn't know what to do. What should I do? Should I be calling our mortgage broker? Are we going to have to extend our mortgage to fix this?
Nope, back the truck up. I rang a friend whose husband is a builder and asked if he could come around and figure out what was causing the leak. He was unavailable, but my friend (who is a bit of a superwoman) said to leave it with her and she would find someone. While I was waiting to hear from her, I rang our insurance agency to find out what could be covered by insurance. Not much.
Then I was left sitting at home with water coming through my window and nothing to do. That didn't help with the stress and anxiety, so I rang another builder who'd done some work for us last year, and he said he could come and take a look that afternoon.
I let my friend know that I had a builder coming around. And then I waited.
The afternoon seemed an awfully long time away when water was dripping into my house. I got the dehumidifier cranking and then realised I couldn't just sit there stewing or I would go insane.
So I vacuumed and folded washing and did dishes and tidied the girls' bedroom, and just kept myself busy with what I could do while I waited for the builder. It didn't totally ease the tight feeling in my chest, but it did help. I wasn't completely powerless in my life.
The builder came and figured out a solution that we hope, fingers crossed, will fix the problem. It looks like when the previous owners replaced the Clearlight over the deck before selling to us, they didn't do it properly. Instead of installing flashing, they just bogged up the gap between the Clearlight and the wall of the house with silicone. That has likely come away a bit in the wind and now water is getting down behind it and the supporting beam and somehow getting into the house.
That's what we think anyway. My builder said you never really know with water. It could be tracking from the other end of the house completely. Good times.
But we're doing what we can, and fixing the flashing anyway. Hopefully that will sort out the leak.
That was a pretty long-winded example one. Sorry about that. The next one is a lot shorter, I promise.
My second example has to do with our garden. There is so much I want to do out there to get it all planted and looking beautiful. My to-do list is a mile long, but we just don't have the funds for most of it right now. (What with a leak to repair and all.)
I could sit there stewing about it, worrying about money and getting annoyed with how life keeps throwing curveballs. Or I could do what I can do.
So I'm doing that.
I'm collecting free materials from around our garden and the neighbourhood to fill the bottom layers of my raised beds. I'm also clearing away weeds and ivy and preparing the ground in anticipation of the fruit trees I'm going to buy and plant.
It's all good, helpful work that is keeping me busy so I feel capable instead of powerless.
Mindset is so important.
If you're like me and often find yourself wound up with anxiety, I hope you'll find some comfort in the act of doing what you can, whatever that may be.
You do have power over your situation.
Posted by Emma at 10:00 PM