Unblocking My Creativity

I’ve been hearing a lot of podcast people talking about “being yourself” and how if you want to be creative, don’t worry about doing something New and Exciting.  Just be whoever you are, and people will see that and relate and love it (or not).

WHICH IS VERY DIFFICULT FOR ME.  Whenever I write a blog post, I think:

  1. Will people think this is funny?
  2. Will people think this is deep?
  3. Will people think I’m a selfish asshole?
  4. Will people judge me for using the word asshole?
  5. Will people think my graphic design attempts are childish?
  6. Will people unsubscribe?
  7. Will someone comment?
  8. Will someone stop supporting my work in Greece financially because I say something they find unChristian or wrong?

And let me tell you, those thoughts running through my head are a TERROR.   Continue reading

Game Rec: The Beginner’s Guide

The Beginner’s Guide is a uniquely simple and emotional story-driven game about depression, anxiety, and the diseases of external validation and the impulse to “fix.”

Created By:  Davey Wreden
Initial release date: October 1, 2015
Platforms: Linux, Microsoft Windows, Mac OS
Time to Complete:  about 1.5 hours
Cost:  $9.99

What begins as a game that traps you inside the twin feelings of depression and anxiety, inviting you to empathy and concern, ends with the realization that perhaps these emotions do not need to be fixed.  In the fictional world of The Beginner’s Guide, “Coda” invites “Davey” to play his impossible games – prisons without exits, mazes without solutions, codes that cannot be broken.  Davey keeps offering us solutions where none exist, and the twist that sets this game apart is his eventually realization that this is wrong.  Coda is not sharing the games (his pain, his creativity, his soul) in order to be fixed.  Coda just wants Davey to share in these experiences alongside him.   Continue reading

Social Anxiety Disorder Checklist

When I took my first psychology class as a junior in high school, I remember hurrying to the computer lab to look up “General Anxiety Disorder” and “Social Anxiety Disorder” because I was pretty sure I had some form of something.  Nevermind actual counselors or psychological tests – I recently came across this list on Tumblr, and it is law!
Totally kidding.  This is, by no means, a comprehensive or even slightly scientific list.  But it does cover a lot of things that make me go “eeeeeaaaaahhhh” on the inside, things that as a child I thought everyone experienced as horrible until I realized they’re mostly, like, no big deal to a lot of people.  So here’s a list of things that scare anxious people, and I’ve bolded the ones that resonated with me.  I also interjected thoughts or stories that I wanted to share.

Continue reading

You’re Never Weird on the Internet (Almost) by Felicia Day

I’ve been a fan of Felicia’s from Buffy the Vampire Slayer to Dr. Horrible’s Sing-a-Long Blog to her YouTube gaming show with Ryon Day, Co-Optitude.  It was inevitable that I would read her memoir, though now that I’ve read it, I regret letting….one whole month pass.  I should have read this the second it was released! Continue reading

Finding Audrey by Sophie Kinsella

I haven’t read Kinsella’s Shopaholic series, but after Finding Audrey, I think I need to!  I loved Kinsella’s humor, inclusion of pop culture, and honest portrayal of mental disorders.

Audrey suffers from a host of anxiety disorders after a (presumably) horrendous bullying experience.  Although I understand the right of a person to not have to share why they struggle, it’s a book!  I want to know why!  This was the one thing I didn’t like about the story.  I can only assume Kinsella thought that no matter her description of bullying, some reader would scoff that it wasn’t that bad.  As it is, our imaginations are free to run wild.

While Kinsella doesn’t tell us exactly what caused Audrey’s panic attacks and anxiety, she does a phenomenal job showing how these disorders play out in her life.  Kinsella doesn’t glamorize her anxiety, nor does she make Audrey into a caricature of a human being.  Instead, she honestly describes the fear, growth, and healing that comes in a person working through their issues with the help of a loving family and a knowledgeable counselor.  And a cute boy.  Because it is a YA novel, and cute boys never hurt.  Continue reading

How to Cope with Anxiety in an Airport

Sometime around 36 hours before my trip began, anxiety hit.  Before then, when people asked if I was nervous about going to Athens, I could genuinely chuckle and say, “Nah.  I’ve been there before.  I know what I’m doing.  It’s going to be intense but fun!”  I don’t know what changed, but 36 hours ago, all my unacknowledged anxiety came rushing into consciousness.

This is it.  This is the beginning of the next step in my life.  I’m going to visit the city that will soon be my home.  I’m going to hang out with the people who will soon be my coworkers and (hopefully) friends.  What if I hate the city?  What if everyone I meet hates me?  What if I’ve made a terrible decision, but I can’t take it back because then I’d look ridiculous?  What if I do back out but it’s a choice made out of fear and I miss out on an amazing opportunity?  What if everything goes wrong and I trip on my face five times and no one speaks English and I sit alone in a corner the whole time?

Clearly action needed to be taken.  Here are some tips (I may or may not have done) to cope with anxiety while in an airport:  Continue reading