Like Salt-N-Pepa’s song: Push it, push it real good! Push yourself. It makes me think of a time when my husband and I were at the pool and the lifeguard said in a fabulously heavy accent “no pushing,” which sounded like “no pooooshing.” For recovery, pushing yourself is important—don’t listen to the lifeguard. You can get advice from the best and most expensive doctors in the world, but if you don’t push yourself (and apply and practice what you’ve learned), the process will be longer and inefficient.
You have to push yourself through your struggle. It’s the only option available, and IT WILL BE SO WORTH IT. You have to actively decide that you want to improve. Decide what drives you to improve. And set manageable, achievable goals to get you to your bigger, overarching goals and dreams. Personally, I really missed the independence I once had—so that was part of what motivated me. I also didn’t want to burden my husband and family, and wanted to live a “normal” life. That motivated me to expose myself to my triggers in CBT to re-train myself that those triggers are not actual threats at all. And by writing down a small summary each day, I could visualize my baby steps towards improvement. I was taught to rank my anxiety from 0-10 (with 10 being a bad panic attack). And sure enough, I went from having almost daily panic attacks, to weekly, to monthly, and now they are many months apart—and even when they happen I don’t let them interfere like I had previously. Pushing yourself may be very difficult at first, but you have to do it to see your improvement—that WILL happen!! 🙂
My motivation to recover initially was to no longer be a burden on my husband and family and to regain my independence. But now I realize that I don’t want to be a burden to myself. Using the tools that are available and practicing my techniques, along with pushing myself through the tough times keep me confident, functional and proud of how far I’ve come. I’ve strengthened myself and in general don’t burden myself or those I love (too often, haha). Not to say that it’s a bad thing to have people and yourself take extra special care during tough times—just something to keep in mind during recovery and future goals to pull you through the challenges.