I wish it didn’t take so little for me to get overwhelmed and stressed. My life now must consist of well made plans and sometimes, it drives me a little nuts. If someone throws me a curve ball, I don’t do well. People with TBI need consistency and a steady schedule. The problem is, I’ve never had a steady schedule. After college, I worked as a freelance violinist/violist and I played all sorts of places: churches, concert halls and every thing in between. I even played violin with an accordionist in a group called “Bellows and Bows.” One of our “gigs” was at a Hyatt Regency where we played for breakfast and for lunch.
After a while, I realized I probably would have difficulty becoming a member of a professional orchestra which had been my dream. I started seminary at an American Baptist seminary n Kansas City because I wasn’t ready to cut my music ties yet. For a couple of years I did both which made for a crazy schedule and late nights trying to learn my biblical Greek. I then transferred to Columbia seminary in Atlanta, GA where I finished and worked as an Associate Pastor in Atlanta.
So I find too consistent a schedule boring! Lately there’s been a couple of unexpected things thrown my way and they’ve stressed me out. I have Charter for Internet and I couldn’t get a signal so I called them this morning. Unfortunately I have found Charter’s customer service to be awful. However, it’s the only company that serves my street so if I want service I have to use them. I had a local provider who was very patient with me when I called for help but for some reason, we no longer can get the signal. I do support local business when I can.
I hate talking to Charter. Plus I’m pretty ignorant about Internet things. We have all these wires and plugs coming out of the computer and I don’t know what is what. Router? Modem? Grrrr. Anyway, I realized I didn’t know what the guy was talking about so I called Michael to help me. Michael is very patient but he does get frustrated with me because he really is a computer whiz. He tried to explain to me there the router cord was and I wasn’t understanding. Finally, he said, “Just figure it out!”
Well that got me mad. “You know I can’t figure it out with this dam TBI!” and on and on I went. He listened and realized that once I get to that point, it’s too late. I can’t be reasoned with. I don’t remember how our argument ended but I did know where the correct wires were so I called Charter back. It’s fixed now but I do feel bad about the whole event. Michael has a lot going on at work and having to stop and deal with me had to have been maddening.
So what have I learned about my tendency to get stressed and overwhelmed from this? I have got to stop myself before this happens. Perhaps I could have taken some deep breaths and meditated some before calling Michael and Charter. I probably should have spent time journaling which always helps me. In fact, I think I’ll spend some time journaling now especially since I have a potentially stressful meeting tonight.
How do you handle your overwhelmed feelings? For me, journaling helps but this isn’t for everyone. See above right for directions on how to comment. (Know that I’m having difficulty commenting myself but I do read every one.) Or if you’d rather, contact me directly at email@example.com