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Drugs & the Noise in Your Head
Today my mind is racing and I am unsure what to do with myself. Do you ever have times like that, extra free time and you aren’t quite sure what direction to take? I remember back in high school—and sometimes even now—when this extra time, this inactive time, was spent worrying or thinking about the future. I was constantly planning something, whether it was a night out with friends or my next backpacking trip. It seemed like I always had some scheme or something to think about, planning away the days of my life.
As an adult, I still get caught up in the planning, ESPECIALLY when I have time that is not filled with activity. I am often incapable of being still. I rush from one thing to the next, spending all my moments in between planning for the next moment, and it all leaves me terribly stressed out. In high school, I know some of the kids dealt with this stress by taking all kinds drugs to escape the constant goings on of their mind. Me, I always preferred something more natural, as I never wanted to get hooked on anything, so I used to smoke pot. Pot made me feel less stressed, like I was sort of dazed and tired, but with tremendous hunger! I remember feeling relaxed and very good most times, but pot also brought with it some bad side effects, like paranoia and lethargy. Being high wasn’t really stress free, because I always thought someone would KNOW I was high, or that someone already did know. It was crazy stressful to worry about being caught doing something illegal and, even though it quieted my mind for a while and freed it up from all the thinking, I had zero energy or drive to DO ANYTHING, so really it was the most pointless thing to do. It got in the way of a lot of my relationships too, because I would avoid people so they wouldn’t know I had been getting stoned, wouldn’t smell pot on my clothes. I was always worried about either getting caught having smoked or just getting caught HAVING it in my possession, which is against the law where I live.
So, you see, smoking pot wasn’t and still isn’t a good way to relieve the stress from my constant thinking and planning. I DID help turn my mind down a notch on what I was thinking about, but it brought with it a whole host of problems that I didn’t have to worry about when I wasn’t getting high. It was really just trading one set of troubles for another.
As an adult I have learned other ways to quiet and still my mind when the racing of my thoughts gets to be too much. I can run, which is awesome exercise. I can journal about how I feel and that helps to relax me some. If I really do have a lot to do, I can make lists so I can keep track of what I have finished or have left to start. I can also meditate which really stops me in my tracks and makes me focus. I like meditating a lot, because it helps me shut off all the worry and stress and negative thoughts that get to rolling around inside my brain.
If you‘d like to learn how to meditate or have a problem with using drugs or alcohol to turn off the noise inside your head like I did, check out these great websites for tips and ideas you can use to get you on the right track, one that’s better for you, is all natural, and doesn’t have any negative side effects. You can also check out my post Be Still, check out CS Shride's blog Meditation and Your Creative Spirit written July 31, 2011 or sign up for my mailing list, get your copy of 18 Tips for Surviving Middle School, High School and Beyond and read all 18 Tips.