Friday, August 10, 2018

The Healing Power of Withdrawal From the World



Summer is hard for me. I suffer from summer SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder) for the very reasons most people suffer from winter SAD -- I'm uncomfortable, I can't get outside, and my life becomes very restricted, so I get depressed and go into what I call my
"hibernation" mode. Not many people really understand this, and some people get their feelings hurt, but I have to do what is best for me.

I'm a true loner and introvert, so I can get completely overwhelmed by people. It doesn't have to be large crowds of people, it can be just a couple who deluge me with communication. I can only take people in small doses, so when I feel beleaguered, I withdraw.

So what do I do when I withdraw? Not very much at all that isn't necessary. I work very little. I take everything in small bites. I take time to garden, I cook and bake things that are too time-consuming for everyday meals, I watch a lot of TV and YouTube and I read. I also work on small projects, like reorganizing a cabinet or decluttering a small space - anything that isn't time consuming or stressful.

I don't make plans, I barely work, I don't reply to a lot of emails, in fact, I turn off some of my email notifications so that I don't even see them. I don't go on social media, I don't read the news, I cancel all my unnecessary outside appointments. I just go into another existence where everything that doesn't give me peace gets pushed off into a corner.

That's where I am right now, so I wont' be posting much anywhere. I may stay this way for a week, a month or longer. I don't give myself a time limit. I just sort of wake up one day and go back into the world when my mind has decided it's safe for me to do so.

I'll respond to emergency correspondence, but nothing else. Please try to understand that this is something I have to do to stay sane, and I can't let other people's feelings influence how, when, or for how long I do it.

This is a part of me that is never going to change. If you are to be my friend, you just have to accept it.

2 comments:

  1. Sabbaticals are good for the soul. I'm sorry if I played a part in overwhelming you... please heal in peace.

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