Big news about the toolkit already. It made a big difference! On DAY ONE I knocked out all but two action items on my new daily Checklist Tool. I could feel the momentum building as I checked off each item, so it definitely helped me be more motivated to actually do things. Yay!
Then came DAY 2. My life is full of stressors, triggers, symptoms, and side-effects that legitimize why I struggle with apathy as a form of numbing and escapist self-medication. This morning I got hit in the face with an enormous cat vomit pie, which was a great test of the effectiveness of my new strategy.
The photo I used today is the bakery bag with a doughnut in it that my sugar-obsessed cat found on the counter and broke into while I slept last night. He is a known “scarf and barf” cat. (Sadly, yes, that’s a thing.) There were multiple piles and smears of the resulting cat vomit everywhere. I can’t believe I was so careless, but there it is. Very unpleasant. I stubbornly ignored it all to do my morning light therapy, the first item on my Checklist Tool, because it was a dark rainy day and I knew I needed it. I couldn’t do the second item on the Checklist, meditation on gratitude, because I was completely jangled by the shocking cat vomit mess. Instead, I checked out the news headlines as I sat in front of my light therapy lamp. When the session was over and I was full of depressing international news, I just wanted to hide in my safe nest. But I had to clean up the cat vomit mess before my husband woke up and tracked it everywhere. He is disabled with no short-term memory so there is no way to warn him to be careful where he steps. Such is my life.
Before I was willing to start the cleaning process I made my “morning comfort coffee,” which I then started drinking before I had brushed my teeth because my mind was no longer focused on my Checklist, but on cat vomit. So I blew it on item 3 on the list. After finishing the cleaning I refreshed my coffee and headed to the safety of my bed to escape further stress, naturally! I was unconcerned about doing the rest of the items on the list that day because I was still triggered. Maybe I would get back to it later and maybe I wouldn’t. I made that choice for resetting my well-being and don’t regret it, but I also wanted to strengthen the tool against being derailed at the “brush teeth before coffee” point on the Checklist again.
So armed with determination (and some desperation) I tied a little bow out of clean dental floss to the handle of my coffee pot. Silly? Maybe, but I have to do whatever works for me.
Tomorrow is another day. I’m hopeful my new Apathy Toolkit will help me claw my way out of this apathy hole I am in. As I start using it regularly I will look for more ways to reinforce it with helpful cues around me. Wish me luck! ☀️🪥 🦷 🌻
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