why I’m sad + reframing my mean, ugly, irrational thoughts…

Do you sometimes just feel sad for no real reason? Loaded chest, ugly mean thoughts circulating around , just all round heavy feeling.

The past few days had been just that for me, my chest feels so heavy, I think mean thoughts about myself, and I feel discontent about everything. Nothing really brings much pleasure, even when I am hanging out with my best friends, this dark cloud still looms over me. It hinders me from really feeling myself, and from letting out a real genuine, heart freeing laugh. This makes me miss the old youthful me that just did not think much about my thoughts and emotions, but was just often pretty happy-go-lucky. I am still glad I have become this reflective, more emotional mature person over the years, don’t get me wrong, but it is just that I force myself to confront my feelings much more, thus sometimes feel them even more. But overall, it means that I understand myself and my needs much better.

Here is a list of things I feel sad about — this is purely for me, so I find the source of my sadness, and anxiety, to help me better navigate my needs or rationalise my irrational thoughts.

  1. Uni work had been really intense, I basically wrote a 5000 word essay in less than a week–including the research process, editing, writing, citing. I have had to do 4 essays back to back and feel like I have not really had a break
  2. I really miss home. I miss the feeling of being taken care of, I miss having someone cook for me, take care of some chores/ share the burden of chores with me, I miss my siblings and my parents, I miss my home that feels like home. I am currently living in a flat in Edinburgh with 3 other strangers (it is a flatshare situation). Although I really like this flat and my flatmates, it still feels somewhat foreign, lacks warmth (literally and figuratively) and love.
  3. I miss my friends that are on their year abroads–all 4 of my main “core” best friends in uni are currently away. Today is just one of those days where I feel like I have no close friends currently in Edinburgh and it is quite isolating and lonesome.
  4. My brother just got a girlfriend and he described the feeling when he is with her as “explainable but pink and natural”. It made me thought of whether I also feel that way with my boyfriend who I started dating almost 2 months ago. I am not sure if what I feel is quite what my brother feels and it makes me feel like my relationship with my boyfriend might not be all that great? Now I am overthinking whether our relationship feels “natural” to me, how much I actually like him, is he someone I could eventually fall in love with? Do I have the capacity to love someone? SCARY
  5. I am financially dependent on my parents, I have no income, which makes me feel a little like a leech. I am also nervous I won’t ever be able to live as well as I do now with my parents providing for me.
  6. I feel discontent with my body, my skin, my appearance. I have not been having the best self-esteem.

Rationalising and reframing my irrational thoughts:

  1. I have actually really enjoyed all the essays I have worked on so far, they have all been really interesting, enriching and eye-opening. I wrote one on the role of economic factors in causing political unrest in China in the 1980s; another one on what fashion and clothing reveal about gender perceptions in early modern Europe; and two on rationality, emotions and decision making in politics. These were all topics of interest to me, I feel lucky and privileged to be in university, pursuing a degree that I like.
  2. It is a privilege to have a roof over my head, a nice room, with lots of space and a garden view. My flat is on a cul-de-sac, so it is always quiet and peaceful, and is also only 10 minutes away from campus. It is an amazing flat, and my flatmates are all really nice easy-going people.
  3. I actually have lots of lovely friends that I really adore and value. Since my closest friends have gone on their year abroads, I have been forced out of my comfort zone to make new friends–which have turned out to be really pleasant. I was given the opportunity to go out there and meet new people, which I probably would not have if none of my friends left. I joined the mountaineering club, made so many cool bouldering friends, and got to deepen friendships I have not paid as much attention to. I love my friends– Thomas, Iona, Lila, Christie, Nicola, Lili, Jessie, Bea, Sun and so many more. These are all people that I consider my close friends so who am I kidding I have no friends?
  4. I think I have just been quite unlucky in my past with this one guy who was a massive gaslighter and manipulator. I was really hurt and find it quite difficult to trust and catch romantic feelings since. I have not dated anyone or had proper feeling for anyone since 2017/2018 until now. I really like my boyfriend–he’s kind, funny, smart, a good cook, spontaneous, cute, handsome and sexy all in one. We have a similar sense of humour, he makes me laugh a lot, he makes me feel safe and secure. I just need to lean in, trust this thing we have, and be vulnerable. If I never allow myself to be vulnerable, I’ll never develop any deep feelings for anyone. I want to keep showering him with lots of care and fully enjoy this relationship with him. My brother also said to me in our call today that if this relationship is adding more to my life than it is taking away, why doubt things? He also made a good point about how this relationship is clearly healing my pain from my past experience, but I need to trust the process, and trust that I am healing. I guess I just need to embrace uncertainty, trust and lean in.
  5. This is one of the last years of my life where I do not have to worry about money, so I think I better treasure this. It is a thing to be grateful about, not having financial worries. My parents are really supportive and do not want me feeling guilty over me being dependent. Hopefully one day I will have the means to give back to them. Even if I don’t make as much as my parents, I can still be content and live a happy life.
  6. I went on a run today and took longer that I would like to finish my run. I really beat myself up for it, I ran a 5k in 26 minutes and I thought I could complete it within 24-25 minutes today but no. But overall I really enjoyed the run, the views of Edinburgh from the meadows, the uplifting music I played on my run, and I feel so proud and thankful of my body for being able to run a 5k, or just even for being able to run and move. Being mobile, having a healthy, well functioning body are all such lucky things to have. I want to shower my body with lots of love, care, and kind words for doing so much for me everyday. I also need to remind myself that I am so much more than my looks, and that I look good 🙂 (lol cringe)

Anyways, I am going to take a shower now because I am all sticky from my run. Writing this blogpost had been really cathartic, it really helped to identify all the things that upset me and reframing them. I do not want to just push my unpleasant feelings away, I acknowledge them but at the same time work towards identifying and dissolving them. Also a good reminder is: things always get better with time, nothing is permanent, and the only constant is change.

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