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Okay, halt the silly funny pictures for a second. I need to get something off my chest.

Two months ago I started a full-time job again, and yet here I am reposting so much stuff. That’s because I’m on a week-long sick leave. But it’s not some flu or lung inflammation or whatever. I had a panic attack. After two months of physical, tedious and stressful work, I broke down.

Luckilly, my “family” doctor is a godsend, as she’s trained as a psychiatrist, so she understands that depression is a sickness just like any other. Aside from giving me a sick leave, she also increased the dose of my anti-depressant, so I can wait for it to work better over the week. I’m worried my bosses won’t understand, though, so that’s why I’m venting here, not on Facebook. (Fortunately, I had a good explanation, because I also have some mild asthma and it really does get worse when I’m stressed - the night I had the panic attack, I could barely breathe.)

Why did I have the panic attack, though? Was it how stressful it is to be the lead warehouseman in a large-brand clothing shop that seems to always lack in staff, materials and is overloaded with deliveries? Was it that I had to tutor over ten people while I was still remotely new myself? Was it the frequent shifting of supervisors, each having different ideas on how to run the shop, often contradicting previous orders? Well, these things contributed. But really, what messes me up the most, is that since I started two months ago, I still can’t organize my life. For two months, I haven’t written a single note or drawn a single line. I didn’t even clean the floor in my apartment. I was hoping I’d adjust, get stronger so working physically doesn’t force me into lying on my bed for the rest of the day, but the truth is, while I did adjust physically, I can’t cope mentally. Monday to Friday, I can’t think straight; Saturday and Sunday, all I can do is play video games, browse Tumblr or watch YouTube, just so I can regenerate my nerves a bit. But the fact I’m still aware of my creative infertility has been continuously wearing on me, to the point where I am now - just sitting in front of the computer for the past three days, doing nothing in particular and feeling guilty about it.

Now, I know it’s not because of the job. It’s not really that hard or terrifying - pretty common by herein standards, actually. I’ve had worse. I’m well aware it’s because I’m at a disadvantage because of my depression. So now, that I have a few days’ time, I want to try figuring out how to improve my situation. I want - no, I NEED - to create again. I need my comic done. I need my album done. But I don’t know how to find the strength and creativity again, because right now I’m not just perpetually mentally tired, but also somewhat empty inside.

Any ideas, Tumblr? Please?

Honestly, it sounds tough for you but I’m sure shit will get better. If you can’t find the strength to carry out tasks like finishing your comic or album just wait untill you feel ready or start off with baby steps like outlines of characters or rough sketches which take 5 minutes or so to do as there’s no point throwing yourself back in to the deep end after having a panic attack as you’ll just feel more mentally drained. Some other things which might help you out is this psychological idea of something called “Self-fulfilling prophecy” or SFP for short which basically states that if you tell yourself something over and over, you’ll follow through with it more as you get in that mindset (Look at studies like Madon 2004 for examples of how SFP can cause a changed outcome). I hope this helps out your situation.

Thank you a lot for these kind words! Yes, I know the SFP technique by heart, I often repeat how it works to warn myself of not talking too much about how things DON’T work. But, truth be told, I haven’t really tried using it to ease myself into being more productive, so it’s worth a try!

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