Beating Stress 28 Jun 2013

My cat, Toby, has been stressing himself out. A lot. Enough that he has been hopping into and out of his litter box every 10-15 minutes. He meows for hours a day in pain. I had to bring him to the vet to get treatment.

We just moved to New York and the move was just too much for him. He had to sit in a crate under an airplane seat for a six hour flight. He arrived at a new place that was half the size of his old home. The apartment is basically devoid of furniture and places to hide and roost in. Different people have been coming in and out of his home on a regular basis as we hosted colleagues and helpful friends during this transitional period.

It’s just been too much for him. It’s depressing because he used to be such a happy cat. I’m still hoping that he manages to calm down over the next few weeks so we can still keep him and he can live a healthy, happy life here with us in New York.

So, why do I mention this?

I’m a bit too anxious these days too. I’m not hopping into a litter box every 10 minutes, but I’m quick to anger and I’m often thinking too much about future deadlines and goals – which gets very distracting. Pets are a reflection of their owners.

I don’t really have a solution, but I’m hoping that acknowledging the problem helps to mitigate some of it. This move and the set of changes I have been instituting have been partly designed to shock my system into changing the way I think and view the world. I’m hitting the reset button. We’ll see how it works.

A big part of it is that I spend a lot of my time right now dealing with un-creative and distracting activities – cleaning the house, wandering aimlessly, reading stupid articles, and so on. I need to get down to creating more and exercising the parts of my brain that are fulfilling, rather than filling time with anxious thought and mental pacing.

Regardless, I think the key is to stop living in the future, like I tend to. It’s time to start living in and enjoying the present. Appreciating what I have and all the great people I know should help too.