The Sandbox Writing Challenge #57 —Hm… That could be a problem!

On Sept 27th, Calen continued with the questions from Learning to Fall: Recording the Blessings of an Imperfect Life by Philip Simmons. Here is the one she asked that day:


How do you respond to problems in your life?

To be honest, not well. I don’t do stress well at all and problems create a lot of it. It all boils down to the severity of the problem.

Let’s take a huge problem, one with a near-impossible solution – My first reaction is to ignore it for as long as possible. When that doesn’t work, I go into ‘flight’ mode or ‘deer in the headlight’ mode (what I call flight or freeze) because I am not a naturally born fighter. If I cannot run from it, panic sets in and anxiety takes control. I will pace, fret, wring my hands, or bury myself under the covers. Then OCD takes control and I will start listing pros and cons for dealing with it, possible outcomes, and possible solutions. This is generally my cool-down stage because making lists soothes me. Eventually, I will come up with a suitable solution to the problem, which may or may not involve others’ help.

With smaller problems that have solvable solutions, I will still ignore it for a few days, maybe have some heightened anxiety over it and then go into the list-making stage. The process can usually come to a resolution within a manner of days, as opposed to weeks with a huge problem.

I am never a quick problem-solver. I cannot just think up a solution on the fly. My brain has to process the problem, work through solutions, and come up with a plan. As I’ve said before, I am a thinker, not a doer. Or at least, it takes a lot of thought to turn me into a doer.

13 thoughts on “The Sandbox Writing Challenge #57 —Hm… That could be a problem!

  1. I wish, Lori, you had been around to say this stuff when our D-i-l was living with us 6 years ago. She is OCD and I think it would have helped to understand her a little better. GREAT post! You’re a natural at expressing this stuff.

      • She and Bran have been separated for — wait for it — almost 7 years. She is back in Florida and he’s here with us. No one seems to be making a move about the divorce… Sigh… (Sure would love to be an empty nester for awhile.)

      • Oh wow.. I can imagine how much you’d like the nest cleared. That’s a long separation too. Matt and I have been separated for 2 years now. Neither of us have tried to file for divorce yet. Does Bran still help her financially? That may be why they haven’t divorced

      • Up until a month ago he was paying her phone bill. But he wants it known that she abandoned him, not that he left her. He’s got a very tender heart… If we had the money to give him to file, we would.

      • Poor guy. I hope he is able to work through all of that pain and can eventually file. Finances are part of the reason neither Matt or I have filed. We are actually getting a long these days, so there’s no real hurry for us.

      • No. He knows I will never move back to OK and he will never move back to VA. I think we get along better via email and phone than in person anyway. We didn’t talk for a year. I did a lot of ho’oponopono meditation to be able to forgive both of us for the failures of our marriage. That’s the only way I could reach out to him again. I am sorry your son and his wife can’t even talk to one another. That’s a real shame.

  2. Pingback: Sandbox Writing Challenge #63 — Live long and prosper? | Impromptu Promptlings

  3. Pingback: Sandbox Writing Challenge #57 —Hm… That could be a problem! | Impromptu Promptlings

  4. Problems don’t bother me much. I think about what I can do and do it. If it can be fixed great if not I do my best to move on. Truthfully, I can only think of a few big problems in my adult life…lots of medium and small ones though. I understand all too well problems with anxiety but I have learned that for me anxiety is just my way/excuse for not dealing with the problem which makes everything worse.

    • That’s great, Patricia. I wish problems didn’t bother me as much, and it isn’t the only time I get anxiety. It is just a part of my daily life. Often I don’t even know what cause me to be anxious.

      • I didn’t mean to sound flippant about anxiety. I deal with it every day and take meds to control it. I have learned to confront it when it rears its ugly head and not let it rule my life like it once did. But then there are days when I just give up have a pity party and go to bed. Those days are rare now…
        being alert and on the defensive is a daily requirement to remain stable.

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