When my dog was a puppy, if he was in the kennel too long, he would get a case of what my dog breading sister called “the ZOOMIES.”
One minute he was sitting calmly at my side letting me rub his belly, and the next he turned into a canine lunatic.
The bottom floor of my home was converted into a race track, and he would sprint in repetitive circles, letting nothing slow his pace, leaping up and over the couches to continue on his course.
We learned there was nothing stopping him when he got like this, and the best thing we could do was get out of his way and wait for him to exhaust himself.
One time, I was standing on the patio and mistakenly called him to come “here” in the midst of one.
He nearly ruptured my ACL as he charged into the front of my knee knocking me flat on my back.
Eventually, like me, he would collapse with the only sign of life his chest heaving up and down as he panted, attempting to refuel his body with the oxygen he had just expended.
Ever get a case of the ZOOMIES?
You know.. those days when your to do list just goes around and around , and the more you do, the more there is still work to be done?
You move at the fastest pace you can , leaping over obstacles to do superhuman feats, often knocking down anyone who gets in your way, sometimes by accident, but more often with your emotional outbursts.
As long as you are making progress and have control, or think you have it under control, you keep going.
You ‘appear’ to be WONDER WOMAN, but the minute someone tries to slow you down, add something else to your list , or you realize you are not gonna make the deadline , you collapse on the floor of a closet panting , and wondering if the pounding in your chest is cause for a trip to the ER.
Who was it that told our generation of women that zoomies were a good thing?
..Something to strive for, and that those of us that could zoom the fastest and complete the most things on a list with the most obstacles in their path would earn the respect and admiration of the rest of us?
Who was it that devalued afternoon siestas and reading a whole book cover to cover?
Who was it that said asking for help or delegating was for weanies?
THAT PERSON SHOULD BE HANGED.
And why did we listen to them?
Do you know what kind of articles and blog posts I see being shared on my FB feed the most? The ones where women, moms, and wives say “Yep, that’s me!” and the title is ” SIGNS and SYMPTOMS of ANXIETY.”
Websters defines ANXIETY as: a feeling of worry, nervousness, or unease, typically about an imminent event or something with an uncertain outcome:
The example given is ,”he felt a surge of anxiety.”
It should say “SHE” and surge sure sounds like the zoomies.
Maybe it’s not even a physical surge or zoom, but a mental and emotional one, where our mind and emotions start racing and we can not slow them down or stop them until we finally cry and pant and shake long enough and we give out …
Some of the synonyms are:
That word pertebation is something I use when typing up my PT notes.
It is when I try and push a patient off balance and challenge them to try and maintain their stability in the midst of my “shoving and prodding.”
Maybe ANXIETY is the ‘knowing’ that we are being pushed and nudged from all directions and doing everything we can to hold onto our stability, but as soon as something or someone pushes a little too hard , we are not only going to lose our balance, we are going to lose our SANITY.
The perpetual prodding on the outside finally shakes us to the point where our insides become agitated and our minds can no longer process what is coming at us.
Another description is: a desire to do something, typically accompanied by unease. An eagerness…
Hmm… so do you think our attempts to please and succeed and be accepted are at the root of this
We are eager to please.
We desire it to the point of idolatry.
When we can not fulfill our expectations or we think we ‘drop the ball,’ ‘miss the mark,’ lose our temper, or DO NOT please, the unease gives way to a full blown PANIC ATTACK.
Psychiatrists define anxiety as “a nervous disorder characterized by a state of excessive uneasiness and apprehension, typically with compulsive behavior or panic attacks.”
So what it the world do women living in the best country in the world have to be apprehensive, fearful, and panic about?
Sure, sickness and death , natural disasters, terrorism , ongoing abuse are issues that we can expect to experience unease and apprehension, but I am talking about regular day to day -doing life activities that are taking women to their knees in their closets.
WHAT THE HECK?
What is at the root of our worried thoughts and concerns that becomes recurring and intrusive?
How do we learn to control these thoughts so they don’t control us?
Or maybe it’s our need for control that is the problem…
Anxiety was something I had never struggled with until about 4 yrs ago.
I could not relate to someone who complained of panic attacks. Like I said, what is there to panic about? I assumed they were just excessive worriers that spent to much time dwelling on the negatives instead of having a grateful heart and embracing life.
I have always been a deep thinker but for the most part, my thoughts were pleasant or at least productive.
If I had an argument with my husband, I might get hurt and upset initially, and dwell on it for a time, but then I would try to see it from his perspective, remind myself not to make assumptions, look for what I could have done different, ask for forgiveness, trust the good will of my husband and learn how to respond better the next time.
I was able to do the replacement thing:
- move from negative thinking to positive thinking
- from victim to becoming a victor
- resentful to forgiving
- self focused to outward focused
And within the hour I was back to my happy pleasant and optimistic self.
Around 4 yrs ago, that optimistic girl became harder and harder to find.
One day I woke up and found her replaced by Mrs. pessimism who was discontent, irritable, easily agitated, and fell apart with a slight nudge.
Now don’t get me wrong. I had my share of unglued moments and experienced stress as a young mother. I got hormonal, and cried easily during pregnancy or that time of month, but I could rebound pretty quickly and overall my perspective was healthy and hopeful.
I never went into what would be classified as full blown DEPRESSSION, but I began struggling with it almost daily.
I never let it hold me down and keep me in bed, as I was determined to beat it.
I knew that all it would take was giving in to it one time for it to take me spiraling downward, so I refused to allow it to.
I can vividly remember lying in my daughter’s play house curled up in a ball in agony , my heart feeling crushed and at the end of myself..
I had no prayers left.
So I did the one thing I knew had power when I felt I had none.
I cried out “Jesus, Jesus, Jesus…” ” I need you.”
Within minutes I had a revelation and realized that for me to stay on the floor of that playhouse and give in to a full blow panic attack was exactly what the enemy wanted.
Whether you believe in spiritual warfare or a higher power or not, one thing you need to understand if you are going to learn to overcome instead of BE OVERCOMED is that your mind is wired for self protection. It’s that primitive thinking pattern that tells us we need to run and away and hide or stand up and fight. We are wired that way for survival.
But aren’t you Tired of just trying to survive?
Spending all of your emotional , mental and physical energy on RUNNING and FIGHTING?
Here’s a SECRET for you today.
You are wired for more than just survival; YOU ARE WIRED TO THRIVE.
You see God didn’t stop with the formation of the primitive brain patterning. He formed higher level thinking centers and equipped them with the ability to GROW and change the more we use them.
But here’s the thing..
When we are functioning in a state of overdrive we will always be led by our primitive responses.
If we want to learn to function efficiently , productively, and in a state of WELLNESS then we have got to start making some choices that will serve us better.
And for the Christian, honor God better.
How in the world do we display HIS SPLENDOR when we are running around like a chicken with our heads cut off?
We have to learn to say NO to FRAP.
In the dog world this is the definition of Zoomies: Frenetic Random Activity Periods, otherwise known as FRAP.
works for us too..
But Kate, you don’t understand my life.
I don’t have a choice.
I GET IT.
Life is complicated.
People need us.
We need things to survive and things cost $.
Circumstances can be hard.
Here is another secret…
You are not powerless.
NO one can keep you in a Kennel.
Unless you are in prison or being held hostage, you have the freedom to move in health.
Even if you are in prison..
There is a moving of the spirit that can bring health even when our physical bodies are limited.
But too often, we are the ones that kennel ourselves.
The good news is YOU CAN open the door and start walking in new patterns that lead to health.
In the midst of life circumstances you can choose WELLNESS.
Do you know what leads to the ZOOMIES?
It happens when my dog misses the healthy routines that he needs.
When my dog gets a morning and evening walk, his afternoon nap, and his food and water the same time, same place, he does not get the zoomies.
Just like my dog, I need healthy patterns and routines to help keep the zoomies at bay..
If I want to be in the “JUST RIGHT’ state of mind, then I have to choose to create healthy patterns in my day that allow my brain to function as it was designed to..
Not the primitive , automatic part.. the part that knows how to analyze a situation and recognize that, No, my life is not in jeopardy.
I am not actually being attacked by a lion.
I do not need to RUN.
I do not need to FIGHT.
The problem is when we are functioning in FRAP mode, we can’t access those reasoning centers that were designed for us..
So let’s start a CAMPAIGN to STOP the ZOOMIES.
Let’s start treating our bodies and our minds as well as we treat our dogs.
Let’s look for one simple step we can take to begin establishing healthy routines.
Here are a few for you to choose from:
* Set a consistent bed time and stick to it. Figure out the best way to prepare your mind to SLEEP. If you aren’t getting an avg of 7-8/night something has got to shift. That is step one.
* Declutter your mind of all the to do lists scrolling through it and keeping your processing centers overloaded. Try downloading everything on one big list and then open a calendar and schedule the items on a specific day and time. Then cross it off your list and throw the list away. I have always been a list maker and used a similar strategy, but am working on doing a better job of scheduling thing. This will take some time out of your already busy day but it will be time well spent that will lead to a more efficient week and more mental energy.
* CROSS SOME THINGS OFF OF YOUR TO DO LIST. You don’t have to be superwoman! Recognize YOU ARE HUMAN. That means YOU ARE LIMITED. Sorry to crush your pride, but your pride is crushing you. Remember the definition of OVERWHELM- to feel crushed!
* DELEGATE. Ask for HELP.
Here is my favorite one!
* Schedule DAILY time to DO WHAT YOU LOVE. Something that produces endorphins instead of cortisol! I know what you are thinking. I don’t have time for me. NOT TRUE. I know you have been “told” that you don’t have a say but you do. Everything you do with your life today is your choice. Free will remember.. Most of the time we are the ones putting the pressure and expectations on ourselves. STOP. Can you TEST me on this? Even if it is just 5 min to start with. If you could choose what you could do with that 5 minutes what would you do? Start rewarding yourself with this. Put it on your calendar before the other things on your list.
YOU CAN NOT TAKE CARE OF ANY ONE ELSE IF YOU DON”T TAKE CARE OF YOU.
If you can’t give yourself permission, then except mine.
GO! Just move at a healthy pace 🙂
#SAY no to frap
Check out this dog with the ZOOMIES! Don’t let this be you! You are not Crazy. You are not broke. You just need some better habits so you can move in health.