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Messages - dyany

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General Discussion / Re: Binge Reading the Book of Mormon?
« on: December 03, 2018, 11:50:38 am »
Saying "you must read!" or "you will do better by listening!" are both kind of incorrect (no offense).  Everyone learns a little differently.  Me, I'm super, super visual.  So reading and watching someone speak/having an in-person conversation is WAY more effective for me.  The tactile part helps too, so physically writing (not just typing) helps immensely.  But some people are more audial, so listening is more effective and enjoyable for them, and that's great, too.  One method is never de facto better than another.  You find what works best for you, and work on that one. 

General Discussion / Re: Binge Reading the Book of Mormon?
« on: November 30, 2018, 03:35:36 pm »
Jen, I'm sorry you're struggling and having a hard time. :(  If you would like a visit, I would totally love to come over.

Some bits:
1. President Nelson's counsel was specifically, "I invite you to read the Book of Mormon between now and the end of the year."  I've seen some people interpret that as "read the Book of Mormon from now until the end of the year, but you don't necessarily have to finish it."  Part of me balks at that, but then I realize that I often say things like, "when I was reading the Book of Mormon this morning" and of course I don't mean that I read the ENTIRE book that morning.  So there is wiggle room.
2. Do you remember when I got fired from HTEH?  And when I asked why, all they said was, "You know."  It really, really damaged me when that happened, for YEARS. But in the last couple of years, I've come to realize that the reason it damaged me was because there were underlying weaknesses and issues with me -- mostly a deep perception of need for outside validation and praise -- that both led to issues there and made me so weak that the firing destroyed me.  You will recover.  You will be fine.  But it's going to be more about seeing yourself differently and recognizing good in what is and what is becoming, than the repercussions the world gives us for mistakes.
3.  Have you ever had your magnesium and, more importantly, your vitamin D levels checked?  I was diagnosed as vitamin D deficient a few years ago, and my endo started me on 5000 IUs a day of D3.  This got me into the normal range, BUT I found out a couple of months ago from my GP that if your D is below 50 (normal is about 20+), then you are at a much higher risk for SAD!  Mine was only at 30, so I doubled my D3 to 10,000 IUs per day, and it has helped a lot, along with 400mg of magnesium per day. 

I saw this saying lately that I fell in love with.  It said, "Nothing is ever beautiful in the process of becoming."  And it's SO TRUE.  Writing a book, the first drafts are nasty.  Painting a picture, the first strokes are ugly.  Making a pot, sculpture, piece of music, child, EVERYTHING is ugly while in the process of becoming.  We are all in the process of becoming.  Which means we still, by definition, have flaws and blemishes and mistakes that are ugly.  If we focus on those, to the point that we see nothing else, we will give up.  Stop.  And stay that ugly.  But if we learn and practice seeing the errors for what they really are--part of the process, not the end product--then we will keep going, have more hope, and eventually get there.  Especially since the Master Creator is in the room, and will assist any time we ask (though sometimes, just sometimes, his assistance is standing a few feet away and just saying, "you can do it").

As to reading the BoM quickly, some bits:
1. Remember that there is a huge difference between reading the BoM in a day and a Harry Potter book in a day.  To say they are both 'just reading' is a vast oversimplification that the depression (which, yes, I anthropomorphize, because it helps me remember it's not me and that I have to fight it and it has tactics) will use to make you feel like the 2 things are equal, and therefore failure in one is a matter of a character flaw.  That's simply not true. 
    One difference is motivation: reading HP is escapist entertainment.  If it weren't fun, you wouldn't do it.  If it didn't pull you from your life, you wouldn't do it.  The Book of Mormon is not remotely escapist, nor entirely entertaining (it's not supposed to be and that's fine; not everything should be entertaining).  It is designed to be carefully thought about, and directly applied to your life--pretty much the opposite of escapist.  This is far more difficult (though makes FAR more positive change in your quality of life).
    The second difference is the writing.  HP is modern and middle grade/YA.  The biggest barriers to understanding it are the occasional British phrases different than American (though the word 'snog' doesn't throw me off at all anymore :) ).  The Book of Mormon is ancient scripture, written from various cultures all wildly different from our own (with different basic understandings of the world and society), in languages wildly different from our own (using way different literary devices and patterns), translated MULTIPLE times, the last time being almost 200 years ago (and in case you haven't read early Victorian lit lately, the language has actually changed quite a bit!).  IT IS HARDER TO UNDERSTAND.  It gets easier with practice, yes, but even after reading it dozens of times, I couldn't read it as quickly or as easily as modern middle grade, or even 70 year old Tolkien fantasy.  So beat up the voice saying "should be simple!" because it ISN'T.  The depression lies to us to gain power over us.  The biggest weapon we have to fight it is learning to identify what is actually real so we don't believe the lies.

If you DO want to read more (I am not going to give an amount, because I don't think that's remotely important), there are ways to do this.  Some things that help me:
#1: I like to use the word 'take the time.'  Because it's not possible to 'make' time, it just exists as is and cannot be changed.  You also can't 'find' time, like it's something that slipped behind the couch cushions.  You take it from something else.  Sometimes the choice to take it from something is simpler--like, I am going to read for 20 minutes instead of watching that episode of Parks and Rec right now.  Sometimes it's a lot harder--I am going to read for 20 minutes instead of cleaning out the fridge, which also needs to be done.  The key is, you get to CHOOSE.  Too often we feel trapped by circumstances, with the constant burbling of "if I don't do it, it won't get done," and "if it isn't done then [insert some horrible social or other punishment here] will happen."  This brings me to step 2.
2: Turn off the autopilot.  Think about what you're doing.  Realize the choices you have.  This takes a LOT of practice and it's REALLY hard.  But it is TOTALLY OKAY to miss this sometimes at first, or start doing something on autopilot and then stop halfway through because you realized you were autopiloting it.  I'm going to give you an example of me in old, autopilot mode and the same situation with making conscious choices.
Scenario: I have to make some phone calls about a company's mistake that is hurting us, do paperwork for my job, do a load of dishes and two loads of laundry, make some calls for my calling, and pack up and ship a return to Amazon so I don't get charged for the replacement.
Feelings: I am overwhelmed.  Anxiety is kicking in.  I am very stressed.
My thoughts and actions in Autopilot mode: I'll get to it, but I'm really stressed right now so I'm going to eat junk food and faff about on Facebook for 'a while' and get distracted while looking up the number for that company.  All while saying "I should stop," "I need to stop goofing off," "man I'm such a loser for not stopping," "What is wrong with me, I'm so much less functional than other adults," etc. 
End result: little to none of the things on the list finished, extreme guilt and self-hatred now in place, stress raised, chances of being as bad or worse the next day higher.

Now, with the same scenario and feelings in place, this is how things go differently when I turn the autopilot off:
[20 minutes into a Facebook binge]: Dyany, you've got stuff you need to do today.  You have time, but you know how easy it is to lose track of time, and sometimes unforeseen obstacles crop up, so let's plan the day out.  Close the Facebook tab.  Close it so that it won't be there when you re-open your browser.  Now close the browser.  Step away from the computer/put down the phone.  [my id (carnal me) is whining at this point, which I don't beat down, I address.]  I know you want to do that, but those messages and conversations will be there later, and remember how much better you feel when you get good stuff done first?  And remember how the tasks are never as bad as the anxiety tells you it is?  [sounds of Anxiety being beat up in the other room]  So let's plan things out [planning on paper, like a paper journal or notebook, helps me a TON, partially just because of being unplugged.  Studies have shown it to help a lot of people in similar ways], do a couple of the items, and see how you're doing then.  We're not taking away the fun stuff.  We're not getting mad at you for it.  We're just rearranging so you can feel better.
[Make plans on paper]
[Go do dishes and start load of laundry]
See, that wasn't so bad!  How are you feeling.  Okay?  Moving around helps, huh.  Let's do one more thing.  Let's pack up that box.  That won't be hard.  [note that I am praising myself even for daily small things.  Pointing out the small benefits I wouldn't normally notice.  Offering constant encouragement, for each and every part of the list.  Because it's the PROCESS and the EFFORT that's important.  Not the end result.]
[Take a deep breath, find the information and box I need to ship the item back, pack it up, label it, and stick it in the car.]
You're doing great!  We have a while before we can start the next load of laundry.  Let's quick get dressed and take this box to the UPS store so we don't forget or get distracted until they close.  Remember how much more motivated you feel when you get dressed?
[get dressed, take package to UPS.  While I'm there, examine my to-do list to see if there's anything else I can do while I'm out, to save time & gas.  Decide there isn't.  Examine how I'm doing while still in the car.]
That went well.  How are you feeling.  Getting a little tired?  [id says it wants fast food]  OK, fast food is sometimes fine, but money is a little tight right now and remember how you want to buy that thing?  Let's just make something at home.
[Go home, eat lunch, allow myself a 30 minute break where I don't let myself fall into 'stress relief quicksand.']
OK, that felt good.  Back is feeling better now, that was a good break.  But we've got to make that phone call.  I know you don't want to, but the sooner you do it, the sooner the problem will be fixed, okay.  We can do some prep so you are really ready for questions and problems, and you won't feel so stressed.  OK?
[Make quick notes about phone call, prep necessary information.  Do this quickly so the anxiety doesn't make it seem worse than it is.  Make call.  It takes a while and the other person makes me so angry that I say a lot of swear words in my head, but I remind myself that the other things are taken care of, I have time to do this, I am prepared, so it will work out.]
You did it!  Great job!  Let's take a 15 minute break, then enter your time for work.  You only have 3 entries this week, so that's won't be bad.  Then you can play video games.

Note that in this scenario, I completely forgot to start the 2nd load of laundry.  I might remember it later, but chances are I won't remember it until bedtime, at which point it's too late.  So I sigh, remember the good things I actually got done, and make plans to do it the next day.  Remind myself that I am a limited human, and I got the most time-crunch things done. 

This is how MY brain works.  And only after years and years and years of practice.  The keys are a) shutting off autopilot, b) paying attention to your needs and reminding yourself that you CHOOSE what you do, because of consequences you prefer, not because of punishment or expectations. c) planning, to help mitigate being overwhelmed while still setting stretching goals, and do things more efficiently. d) acknowledging and praising every bit of good you did, even if the good was 'only' the effort. 

This really, really helps me deal with the 'impossible task' (i.e., the seemingly small thing that the depression doesn't want to do, so you avoid it, then you feel guilty and angry with yourself for avoiding it, so it becomes harder to do, ad nauseum) that can become huge when you deal with anxiety or depression. 

I don't know if this will help.  But keep this in mind: you are AWESOME, I love you, and things will get better.

I'm not sure if you meant it this way, but the term 'sycophant' is generally insulting, and as there are many people on this forum who still consider themselves friends of EDG, that may not have been the best term to use.

General Discussion / Re: Cabin & Porch
« on: November 17, 2018, 01:24:37 am »
Thanks Patty!  I had fun doing it.  I hope to be able to quit my day job and switch to doing this.  Being sick like I have been doesn't matter as much, and I wouldn't have to deal with Medicaid or HIPAA or medical paperwork (gah I hate the documentation SO MUCH). 

If anyone else is looking to put together a small-ish website, my husband and I are starting a business making them, including hosting & registration if you want it.  We hope to be up and running by the beginning of the year, but if anyone needs anything before then, I will give a discount (since there are bits I still am learning so I'm a little slower now than I will be later).  Our company is going to be called Arachne Web Spinners and I'm pretty excited about it!

News of the Church / Re: No more pageants?
« on: November 13, 2018, 05:46:52 pm »
Very little litigation.  Zero ambulance chasers.  I think you might have misunderstood me in an attempt to say, "that's those people, not most," but hoo boy the ambulance chasers and lots of the 'smaller' attorneys I've met were equally, if not more, nasty.

News of the Church / Re: No more pageants?
« on: November 11, 2018, 06:49:38 pm »
JLM: they were the biggest firm in the state (this is Idaho, though, so not THAT huge), so mostly corporate, estate, tax, intellectual property, tidbits of medical malpractice, divorces only for pre-existing clients, etc.  Zero criminal law and the only litigation was big corporate litigation (like Superfund sites and the like). 
As a rule, the estate lawyers tended to seem the most honorable, followed by tax lawyers. 

News of the Church / Re: No more pageants?
« on: November 10, 2018, 03:46:36 pm »
Russel M. Nelson was my grandmother's heart surgeon, ages and ages ago.  She died in January of 1980.  Sometime around 1994-5, I met him when he came to speak to our single's ward in Boise.  He not only remembered my grandmother, but said she was a 'spitfire,' which was the kindest way I've heard of describing her personality, which most of us usually describe as 'ornery,' and maybe even 'cantankerous.' 

People who are full of themselves usually don't remember their clients, and if they do, they don't make efforts to remember them or talk about them fondly. 

I think it's easy to make generalizations of groups, but it is wrong to assume that someone you know from that group must meet those criteria.  I worked in a law firm for 10 years.  I believe that most attorneys are greedy, self-absorbed, haughty jerks.  But I don't assume someone is that way because they are an attorney, especially because I also have friends and relatives who are attorneys. 

General Discussion / Re: cell phone help
« on: November 07, 2018, 06:34:13 pm »
Another viable solution: many newer phones/services allow you to use WiFi for calls and texts if they can't get a decent cell signal.  You change a setting on the phone (where it is and if it's available depends on the phone), and if it can't get a good signal, it automatically switches to WiFi.  I have to use this all the time when I visit my brother in Draper because almost NO cell companies have decent signals at his house.  Works great and aside from changing the setting when I first got there, I never had to mess with it or change how I made calls or texts.

News of the Church / Re: No more pageants?
« on: November 01, 2018, 12:02:25 pm »
JLM: whether or not it is required is irrelevant.  There have been many recent stories from the 12 talking about how every decision is agreed on unanimously.  So even though not required, they send out the message that it IS unanimous.

General Discussion / Re: cell phone help
« on: October 29, 2018, 12:04:21 am »
Most of the major carriers will be willing to give you a booster for free, especially if you already have a contract with them. Mostly because it's not legal for them to hold you in a contract if you can't get a signal in your residence,so they would much rather give you a free booster than lose your business.

News of the Church / Re: No more pageants?
« on: October 28, 2018, 11:01:08 pm »
I should add: I know this is difficult, especially for some parents.  I, myself, have a brother who has strayed, not from outright rebellion, but from failure to work on his weaknesses until they overtook him.  My mother, whom I consider a huge part of the problem, continually nags, goes to his home to 'help' him, and frets over how she can 'save' him.  The answer is simply: she can't.  It's not possible.  Christ himself cannot save him if he does not wish to be saved and does not work towards salvation, for "God will force no man to heaven."  It is, in fact, my mother's inability to see her children struggle in any way which has prevented him from learning how to deal with failure, how to work for success, and other things that would have prevented (or at least not exacerbated) this situation. 

Healthy boundaries are vital for our development as eternal souls.  Healthy boundaries help BOTH SIDES, though often one side may not see it that way.  I feel that the veil and other things that Heavenly Father has made as part of the plan are part of healthy boundaries He, in his perfect wisdom, has established.  Because choosing Him and the path to eternal life isn't supposed to be easy or obvious.  There wouldn't be growth in that.  We know from doctrine that being tempted by poor choices is essential.  So much so, that it was guaranteed that we would experience failure and sin, through which we learn, and because of that, I believe that failures and hardships were also essential.  Because of this, the other essential part of the plan was the Atonement, but it's not automatic.  We have to choose that, too, through repentance and ordinances and doing our best to keep the commandments.  Which means that, unfortunately, one of the things we have to suffer is watching people we love use their agency in ways that will not lead them to eternal life.

The path is always there for us.  Christ is constantly inviting us to follow Him and will always help us if we are making good efforts.  But He cannot and will not force us.  That includes making so many concessions for those unwilling to change or grow or work or try, that the gospel becomes watered down and those who ARE trying are hindered or even hurt.  Christ knows that our growth only comes through work.  Our growth only comes through difficult choices.  He will always be there, and always help.  But sometimes what we think is 'help' is actually coddling, and actually hurts us in the long run, and that is something He avoids.

News of the Church / Re: No more pageants?
« on: October 28, 2018, 10:41:14 pm »
Did people miss the part of the announcement where outside study and social groups were encouraged? I contacted my bishop almost immediately saying I would love to put together a weekly gospel study group.
There is a big difference between 'wheat not ready to stand on its own feet' and those who only come for social or tradition reasons. One is trying to develop a testimony, and as I said in my earlier comments, the program helps with that (through ministering, etc.). But we can't help those who aren't interested in the actual gospel, and in fact, sometimes those who see the Church as something other than the gospel and path to return to God, often pose a stumbling block to those who may be weak, but seeking pure gospel.

News of the Church / Re: No more pageants?
« on: October 28, 2018, 06:52:31 pm »
Honestly, I think that diminishing 'other' reasons for going to church is part of the point.  The changes to ministering, scouting, teaching programs, refocusing the name of the Church, shortening the 3 hour block in favor of more personal and family education and enrichment, and eliminating the big shows, all point towards telling people it's time to actually fish and stop cutting bait.  You need to move from being lukewarm to having a testimony.  We will be there and help with that.  But the days of being in the church for social or other reasons other than following Christ are over.  You get to choose: are you wheat, or are you a tare?

Mormon Life / Re: Social Media Anger
« on: October 18, 2018, 11:30:10 am »
Roper, that's what always ropes me in, too. :/  I try to stay as neutral as possible, find as neutral and as official of a source of correct information as I can, and post the link.  But sometimes I have to remind myself of this:

Mormon Life / Re: Social Media Anger
« on: October 11, 2018, 11:30:08 am »
I pretty much agree with Taalcon.  I have a fairly decent sized friend list, mostly LDS, mostly writers, lots of family.  As I have learned more about healthy boundaries, I have come to love the 'unfollow' option.  The unfollowed person doesn't know you did it, they can still see your stuff, still send you messages, still be your friend, but you don't have to see their toxic diatribes.  I have some very good friends that I have actually unfollowed, because while I love them dearly, their constant vitriolic political posts were irritating and often offensive--not as much because of their position, but because they were very hateful and their arguments were generally unsound.  I found that a) that approach made me instantly defensive, which never helps foster real discussion, b) when I see people I normally respect making REALLY BAD arguments (for or against my position, doesn't matter), I lose respect for them, and c) when people make bad arguments, I get this false notion that they just don't see the error of their bad logic/incomplete information, and simply being informed will set things right.  Hoo boy this is wrong.  At least 99% of the time, anyway. 

We as a people don't know how to have civil discussions with empathy and open minds with people with whom we disagree (which, honestly, is the only group with whom civil discussions are productive, because listening to people who believe everything the same as we do doesn't teach us anything).  Being taught to simply avoid the subjects of politics and religion has created a people unable to talk decently about politics or religion, which we desperately need to talk about. 

All this being said, I currently have nearly 700 friends on Facebook and have been using that platform for nearly 10 years (quite heavily for about 4).  In that time, I have unfollowed maybe half a dozen people, and unfriended only about 2-3 (unfriending is extreme, and I reserve for the people who feel that making vicious posts on their own wall isn't enough, but that they must make vicious comments on my posts as well, even if it's only tangentially related to what they want to rant about).  While the feminist vibe sometimes gets kind of strong sometimes, I find that I rarely see much hate on my feed because of how I've curated it.  Occasionally, some of my fringier friends will have a post that has comment threads that get angry (because I don't control their friend lists, of course), but I have learned which posts to read comments on and which to just read the post and move on.

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