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Can't concentrate - another symptom of anxiety.



My mind is all over the place these days, like the floor of a teenagers bedroom, it's strewn with undone tasks and discarded ideas. A symptom of anxiety, my poor brain feels like a fat kid let loose in a candy store with a bucket and the words "go grab what you want". Shiny and bright things keep grabbing my attention and I turn from each bit of bling to the next.

Today is Friday - Writing Day. 8am. I sit down to the computer to write. My mind is still not quite awake, so I get permission to read a little Facebook while I drink a coffee. I see a link to a great writing piece, or a tutorial on using Scrivener, or a link to a news story, or worse, a link to videos of naughty cats or 10 celebrities that forgot to put on makeup. Distractions galore. 



But once I get to the distraction, then 2 seconds into reading that, I am distracted again. I remember that I need to check my bank account, an email comes in, I see a previously open tab of a website that I wanted to read. I check my calendar. I look up and see all the books on my shelf that I still need to read. I decide that a load of washing needs to be put on. While I am in the laundry, I clean the toilet. Fold the towels from the dyer. Go back to the computer and recheck my emails. Check my chin for stray hairs, decide that a mirror and tweezers are needed. Make another cup of coffee. Empty the dead roses from the vase I pass. Think that I need to go pick fresh flowers ....

I chastise myself. I am meant to be writing. I convince myself that my brain needs waking up and I should do my daily brain training to kick start it. Halfway through, I get a facebook message. I check it. It's a link from a friend to her dropbox. She is on holidays. I start checking her pics and remember that I need to book flights to Sydney. I go to the booking site and an email comes in from my favourite homewares shop and they have a sale!

In under an hour, I have 15 tabs on my browser open, the washing machine on spin cycle, half a comment started on a friends blog post, two books pulled from the shelf and stacked beside my reading chair, a clean toilet, hairless chin and not one single word of writing done.

I can't blame the modern age of information overload entirely. I just can't seem to stick at any one task for more than a few seconds. I know its my anxiety that is causing this, I could not still my mind if my life depended on it right now. The notion of 'Mindfulness' is a far horizon.

Telling myself off and to "just get on with it", I reread what I have started and although I can read the words, they do not make a sentence in my mind. I get stuck on one word, while new and brighter ideas pop into my head. I scream at myself to STOP this!



And then in defeat, I sit in my reading chair with a book in my hand and just stare out the window with nothing but how tired I am on my mind. I catch myself nodding off like an old grandma dog and eventually give in to a nap on the couch.

It has taken me two hours to write this. I won't bore you with the 101 distractions I have succumbed to, not because I care, but because recounting them is a distraction in itself. 

By this afternoon, when I have written no more words to my word count and feel scattered and cast adrift in a sea of overload, I will feel so guilty and disgusted with myself that I will watch crap TV to escape that feeling.  

I want my old mind back. Anxiety sucks!

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