Progress Report #1

It’s unhealthy to focus solely upon self-improvement, and never acknowledge improvement or progress, so as part of my journey, I’m including growth too. So, here’s an update on: Distress Tolerance, Indoor Introvert, and Empowering Her to Grow.

Regarding my social anxiety, I have made a bit of progress. A few days ago, I was outside in the yard with my husband during the day, doing yard work. This was a better situation than the one described in “Distress Tolerance” because my husband was with me (which means that I’m not alone) and there was another concrete task limiting the duration (which provides a measurable goal to strive for). It wasn’t my favorite experience, but it went better than the first time did: no pounding heart, no anxiety to speak of, just discomfort.

Today, I reached a point where I was just overwhelmed by the pressure of my electronic outlets. It was very odd for me, but I actually needed to get away from the entertainment that I use to get away from the world. So I did it anyway- I turned things off, I put on a coat, and I went out for a walk in my neighborhood. I didn’t actually reach the place I was trying to go, which is because I have very poor spatial awareness, so I don’t really create mental maps of places that I go. I did make it back home, though, so that’s fine. It went… it was ok, really. I met a woman with a dog and a friendly stray cat came to visit me, so I even got an animal fix out of it.

This may not sound significant to anyone, but it’s something that would have been impossible a week or two ago, so it matters to me. Progress is progress.

Meanwhile, Kuno is making progress with her fear too. She was up on her cat tree when I got back from my walk, and though she jumped down when the door opened, she stayed within sight of the door, and came to visit me within a minute of me coming inside. She still ran, but she didn’t run far. She was scared, but she didn’t dwell in it long. That’s progress too.

Small steps can still take you across great distances. Progress is progress and growth is growth. Celebrate, accept, and move on.

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