As part of my CBT I’ve been trying out Graded Exposure, last Monday I went to sainsburys, I started with around 70% anxiety on route, and by the time I’d walked up and down the aisles for a while it dropped to around 50% and then pretty much stayed there for the entire visit. Then on Tuesday I tried again, I started with around 50% anxiety and it dropped to around 20% within the first 5-10 minutes until I got back in the car and went home. I was ok with that, small but significant accomplishment.
Today I went to Argos. I am totally living the dream, I know you are all so jealous of my rock and roll life style but what can I say? It just comes naturally to me. First sainsburys, then Argos, what next? The possibilities are endless. I didn’t choose the thug life, the thug life chose me. So I started off with around 60% anxiety on the way, and this stayed steady until I got into argos and was queuing. Out of nowhere my anxiety levels increased to 100% when I was at the point of no return waiting for my item (a hoover incase your interested) I started panicking, it was super busy and all I could hear was too much noise and all I could see was too many people. I was sweating and tingling all over, and I called over my boyfriend to make up a back up plan. This was totally against the rules, my boyfriend is supposed to be a silent partner in my graded exposure experiment, he is my get away driver only, and is not supposed to give me any form of reassurance. I am such a rebel. He didn’t give me any reassurance though, I couldn’t really get my words out properly, I just ordered him (politely, obviously) to go back to where he was previously so I could panic in silence. Then something great happened. I got over it. We both carried on with our separate tasks and I lived to tell the tale. It’s practically a miracle. I conquered the war that is Argos on a bank holiday weekend. Somebody pour this girl a drink.
This is apparently called Prolonged exposure, because like graded exposure isn’t torture enough, I also have to stay in the situation that makes me want to pass out on the floor crying for my mum. So you heard it here first guys, not only did I manage to peel myself off the sofa that I was fairly confident I had become a permanent fixture of, I got my clothes on, and I went to argos even though I just wanted to stay in my own little bubble and laugh at the outside world, and I actually survived.
What’s tomorrow’s adventure I hear you ask? ASDA. Because I’m going to look for some smelly candles. ASDA’S where it’s at guys. I heard all the cool kids go there.
I rewarded myself with a relaxing bath and a Lush Cosmetics bath bomb, and I smell funkin DELICIOUS.
HAPPY EASTER WEEKEND. Try and do something out of your comfort zone, anything counts. Lots of love and luck to you all. I will update you tomorrow if it doesn’t go disgustingly wrong with me ending up an emotional wreck because either A) I can’t find any scented candles that dont smell like Christmas (Why is Christmas the main ingredient in candles?! I love Christmas guys don’t get me wrong, but there’s a time and a place and it’s not April in aisle 12) or B) I have a major panic attack, drop all my shit on the floor, run to the designated get away vehicle and cry all the way home.
Keep your fingers crossed for me.