Monday, August 22, 2016

Cross Stitch & Colouring Books

Have you ever tried to focus on something and your mind will simply not allow it because of everything else you have to do? This is my brain... all the time. I start one thing, get easily distracted, start something else and the cycle keeps continues. Finally, I look at my to-do list and realize I have started everything but have completed nothing. There is nothing worse (really there are many worse things, but humour me) than feeling as though you were busy busy busy all day but have accomplished nothing - leaving you (well, me for sure...) feeling stressed, overwhelmed and unmotivated.

I have been a bit scatter-brained since as long as I can remember and have ALWAYS tried to take on more than I should. My first realization of this was in High School. I was a good student and making sure to maintain my grades in order to get into whatever University I wanted to; I was on the volleyball team; I was on the swim team; I was taking drivers education sessions; I was working part time at a cinema; and, I was working part time teaching swimming lessons. Quite a load for a 16 year old. You might think this sounds like good focus and not scatter brained at all, but it was really just a 16 year old trying to take over the world one activity at a time. It was the recipe for my first panic attack/melt down.

When faced with the decision of what to give up and what to keep on doing my parents suggested I go to a phycologist to help with some stress relieving techniques. Looking back I am thankful they didn't make me quit everything, instead they treated the situation as though I were an adult that needed to learn to juggle many things at once, deal with stress and ultimately live a very full life. I reluctantly went to the phycologist with the preconceived notion he would teach me nothing and that since I wasn't crazy this was a complete waste of time. Fortunately, I was wrong. I went only once, but I received advice that helps me to this day - the phycologist suggested that I find something that takes my full attention and do it. The idea is that while you are doing this activity you cannot think of anything else and if your mind sways, you mess up the activity and have to fix something due to a lack of attention. The activity can be anything... cooking, wood work, running, tetris, whatever works for you.

My activity was Cross Stitch. Although, cross stitch is known to be done by grandmothers etc. here I was at 16 cross stitching to keep me sane and stress free.
Today we are lucky that adult colouring has become so popular and a socially acceptable way for anyone to spend an evening. The phycological benefits of colouring (or doing cross stitch) are amazing... not to mention you get something pretty nice looking when you're done!

The next time you have a really bad day at work, have listened to your baby crying for hours on end or just feel like its time for a mental refresher - get out the colouring book, choose a very intricate pattern, concentrate and colour.

My shoes for that: UGG Moccasin Slippers (Ansley)


2 comments

  1. I have the same slippers:) I also love cross stitching, it's like colouring- but acceptable to hang on your wall:)

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  2. I love colouring and am glad you got me into it. It has helped me to relax and focus since having a baby. I also enjoy scrapbooking for this reason as well only it is something that is more time consuming so it has been more challenging since becoming a mom.

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