It’s been five-days since my third week in the Self Esteem course and I apologise for the gaping delay in writing this post. For the past week, I’ve been unable to log-in for more than a few minutes… That’s been the highlight of my efforts! For the rest of the time, I’ve been unable to load a single WordPress-hosted site; whether that’s one of my own or somebody else’s. Doing a bit of search engine research this evening, I’ve discovered that it seems to be an issue with TalkTalk (perhaps also concerning customers of other UK-based ISPs). All other sites appear to be functioning fine but I’ve not been able to get on here until this evening… When I suddenly remembered that I still have a mobile broadband with 3 Mobile! 😎
…I just have to be careful not to download too much stuff before the end of the month. My main reason for switching back to wi-fi last week was because I received a warning text to say that I am close to my monthly 5Gb limit (so many wasted hours on YouTube…). I often wonder why I still have this thing, as it’s costing me more than £15 a month but hey, I am grateful on this one occasion! 🙂
It was very close to 22.00 by the time I arrived home and I’ll get to that shortly. As I sat down, wanting to share an update with you all; I felt as though I had nothing much new to share with you. I guess we’re not so much bringing up new information and techniques as we are digging deeper in to what we’ve begun to explore. After all, I’m not here to try and teach you CBT or to try and pry too much from the experience of such a course.
There’s one thing that’s stuck in my mind since Monday night and I’ll share that with you now… Actually, there was also a thought that popped in to my head but I’ll get to that after sharing a rough translation of what the course leader said…
“We’re the first people offer kindness and support to others. We would never act in any other way towards those we care about. So, why are we so horrible to ourselves?”
That’s far from a direct quote. What he did say was far more succinct and you really would’ve benefited from being there, as this came about after a comparison between two boards we had created in the classroom – one depicting the ‘appearance’ of the ‘critical’ (even nasty) voice that we too often hear; the other, far more pleasant; the warm and open, caring person we would like to meet. That person we all too often try to be for the benefit of others… But never to ourselves.
My personal big step for this week was to take some time out after the two-hours session (by which time, it was 20.30) and to walk down to the seafront at Weston-super-Mare. It had been a few years since my last visit but I knew my way, having driven it on my return journey home for each of the past two weeks (a bit of ‘gradual exposure’, you might say). I was hoping to stop off for chips or maybe a donut (advertised for £1 each) but, as I started towards the north end and then made my way down and beyond the Grand Pier; it was 21.00 by the time I passed the final food hut and they were closing for the night. Several small restaurants were still open but I really wanted something to take-away and sit down where I would feel more comfortable.
Once I reached the road that runs parallel to the beech after leaving the centre, I turned right to follow it north, on a pavement to the other side of the road from the main attractions. When I reached a point further up where I felt like I wanted to cross, I felt a sense of anxiety that other people would notice me and that they would see me kind of back-tracking on my own footsteps; albeit along the pavement running parallel to the one I was leaving. I felt cautious but it didn’t stop me.
A high tide (not to mention the ‘unwelcoming’ colour of the sea water) prevented me from stepping on to the sand past the pool to the north of the pier. There was still time before snorkels once I passed south of it (and the food hut) but, by this point, my views were obstructed behind the monstrosity that was the the walling fitted to enclose the Sand Sculpture competition. 😛 So, I crossed over and made my way past the giant wheel and on towards my return point.
…Quite why Weston has a giant wheel, I’m still not sure. There’s not an awful lot to see beyond the water that you won’t get to view from ground level. From a friend’s recently holiday photos on Facebook; I’ve noticed that they also have one of these in Torquay now. So, I guess they’re literally popping up all over the place.
Oh, and that other thing he said? Well, in my mind, he made a blatant reference to a comment I made in my first post on this series; alluding to the fact that he is “not Derren Brown“. This came after a discussion about thinking patterns (we were discussing Fortune Telling, where we naturally assume to know what another person is thinking, often in relation to ourselves). I began telling myself that he was and perhaps still is reading this blog… But there’s no proof of that. What is probably more plausible is that he really IS Derren Brown (wearing some kind of make-up…) and that we’ll be revealed as unknowing contestants for his latest show to be broadcast on Channel 4 from September! 😀
But I feel like I’m going to end this one on a slight negative, with a view to the week ahead. Each week on this course, we’re reminded of the importance of doing more for ourselves and not-too-much for others. I’ve been asked to do ‘too much’ for work one day this week, which’ll mean starting an extra half-hour earlier and then driving three hours each way, for a towering fourteen-hour day! I genuinely couldn’t say no. I didn’t feel I had a reason not to go. I couldn’t whip up an excuse with someone sat infront of me. Now, I’m dreading it. I’m regretting not being able to ‘disappoint’ someone and as what has become too common; I’m letting myself down; giving too much, if only for one day.
It probably is too late to back out due to the nature of this work and the visit but perhaps instead I can try to focus on the positives… Like the chance to eat a McDonalds and how I won’t have to routinely pack my own lunch the night before…
Thanks for reading.