midlifedude

Man at midlife making second half matter

Archive for the tag “anxiety”

Why Worry? Because I Can’t Not

AnxietyWhy should I worry

Why should I care

They always told me

Life isn’t fair

 

Everything is futile

Why should I try

Ain’t gettin’ nowhere

It’s just one big lie

 

When it gets really bad

Paralyzed by fear

Can’t catch my breath

Desperate for some air

 

Tryin’ to sleep

As my worries run high

After hours of tossin’

Can’t help but cry

 

Can’t shut my brain down

It’s surging on overload

Worry on steroids

About to explode

 

The walls, they’re always closing in

Suckin’ down more and more Klonopin

Heart beatin’ out of my chest

Damn, if I could only get some rest

Sweat pourin’ down my back and head

God, sometimes I wish I were dead

Don’t matter I know that wouldn’t be right

It’s a battle I’m always havin’ to fight

 

Why should I worry

I’ll tell you why

Nothing goes my way

No matter how hard I try

 

Can’t make a mistake

For that would spell certain doom

Only way to avoid that

Is to stay in my room

 

Why get out of bed

What’s the point anyway

I feel better in the dark

Hidden far away

 

Everybody’s judging me

I’m a failure and a fraud

Everybody hates me

I swear even God

 

Anxiety’s got its grip on me

Poppin’ pills, tryin’ to set myself free

Runnin’ out of Xanax way too quick

Gotta hit the streets to get my next fix

But those little pills run out after so long

Only other option is to light up my bong

Yeah, maybe it’s just a way to avoid

But it still beats feeling so paranoid

 

Dread around every corner

Trouble everywhere

I’d like to take a risk

But better not dare

 

Tryin’ so hard to stay in control

So everyone thinks I’m OK

But on the inside I’m ‘fight or flight’

Every single, God damned day

 

Sometimes gotta pull my car

To the side of the road

Feel like my heart’s beatin’ out

From the weight of my load

 

My mind racing so fast

Feeling like a rock stuck in my belly

Ain’t no fun to wake up each morning

Like a quivering blob of jelly

 

Nobody else knows what it’s like

To constantly live with your finger in the dike

If I took it out, there’d be such a rush

My emotions would swamp me, and I’d turn to mush

Maybe if I did, it would be a relief

To just unload all of my grief

But then everyone would wonder, what the hell’s wrong

No, can’t do that, gotta seem strong

 

Sometimes my anxiety

Makes me so sad

That’s when my depression

Gets really bad

 

Have visions of a gun

Pointed at my head

Wouldn’t everything be so peaceful

If I were just dead

 

No longer need to worry

Everything would be just fine

My mind would finally be quiet

Heaven doesn’t make you wait in line

 

Only problem about it

Insurance wouldn’t pay

I’d only hurt my family

By going out this way

 

But now I’ve decided to make a stand

I refuse to hurt myself by my own hand

I’m going to someone so I can clear my head

Of this constant, miserable sense of dread

So far, I feel it’s doing me some good

When I started, never thought it would

Finally, I can see myself feeling more whole

And reconnecting with my long-buried soul

 

Tryin’ to change the way I think

And how I act

Never realized how much

Thoughts have an impact

 

I’m developing new skills

To stay calm and cope

That’s giving me

A new sense of hope

 

I’ve started to meditate

Instead of lightin’ up a joint

I’m finally accepting

My counselor may have a point

 

I’ve got a long way to go

To get out of my own way

Learned the only way for me to live

Is going day by day

 

Anxiety is still with me

Still causes me some strife

But now that I’m more mindful

It doesn’t rule my life

 

There is hope after all

Though it doesn’t come in a hurry

Against this curse called anxiety

And once uncontrollable worry

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Debt: The Mosquito in my Ear

Debt nags me like a mosquito buzzing my ear as I try to sleep.

I’ve spent my midlife trying to get out of debt while preserving assets – in other words, reducing debt with current income while attempting to avoid incurring more liabilities Debtor depleting investments. Sometimes I have had to unload investments to pay off debts, and always feel bad about it, like I’m filling a city street pothole that is sure to crater again.

Overall, I’ve been fairly successful at paying down and staving off debt. Still, whenever I become completely debt-free, something seems to suck me back “into the red” – a job loss, a major repair, education costs, or simply operating a budget that gets out of whack and spending beyond current means, a cash flow problem. I’m not alone.

Americans are swimming in debt:

  • The average American household that carries credit card debt has a balance of more than $15,000 on the cards, according to a 2017 NerdWallet survey. The same study found that the average American household carrying student loan debt owed $46,597 in education expenses, and the average American household with auto loans owed $27,669 for their vehicles.
  • A 2014 Urban Institute study found that 35 percent of Americans had delinquent debt. That debt typically came from credit cards or medical or utility bills that was more than 180 days past due and had been turned over to collections. The debts averaged more than $5,000.
  • In 2013, 7 out of 10 graduating college seniors were entering post-college life with student loans, which averaged $28,400, according to the Project on Student Debt.

Debt limits freedom and choice. Debt triggers shame and guilt. Debt causes stress and distrust in relationships. Worry over debt can lead to physical health problems, such as high blood pressure.

Debt makes me irritable, anxious and angry. I’m not alone in suffering from negative emotions related to debt. Research has found links between financial health and mental health.

Researchers from the University of South Hampton who analyzed 65 studies on debt and mental health determined the likelihood of having a mental health problem, particularly depression and anxiety disorders, is three times higher among people who have debt. The link between debt and suicide was especially pronounced: People who committed suicide were eight times more likely to be in debt.

Drug abusers were more than eight times more likely to be in debt, and problem drinkers 2.5 times more likely.

Short-term debt, such as credit card debt and overdue bills, was associated with greater depressive symptoms, according to a 2016 study in the Journal of Family and Economic Issues. People in the latter stage of midlife and closing in on retirement, 51- to 64-year-olds, were among the groups where the link between debt and depression was the strongest, along with people who were not stably married and those with no higher than a high school education.

Researchers aren’t unified in what causes what – whether stress related to debt causes mental health problems or mental health problems lead to poor financial management. But the two woes are close partners either way.

As midlife progresses, the urgency to escape debt and then keep it at bay increases. Time becomes the enemy; opportunities to get out of debt and recover start to diminish. Wives have been horribly miscast; debt is the real proverbial “ball and chain,” and not something one wants to drag into later adulthood. Whenever I hear that mosquito known as debt whining in my ear, I’m going to slap it silly.

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