Thursday, January 26, 2017

How to Find a Therapist -

I am a big fan of talk therapy. I haven't actually loved all of my past therapists though (once I even left midway through a session, crying, after paying the dude $20 so I didn't have to deal with insurance), but I am always in pursuit of landing that person who is perfect for me. Someone who has just the right number of candles lit in their office to be relaxing and not weird. 

And just to be clear a therapist is different than a psychiatrist.  A psychiatrist gives you prescription medications  while you try not to cry in their office.  A therapist gives you kleenex while you definitely cry in their office. Both interactions are necessary in my book. 

Mental health help is tricky in America and because of that I will ALWAYS have a psychiatrist and talk therapist in my world. I will do whatever I need to, to maintain an active patient status. Because trying to get in to either - therapy or psychiatry - feels as difficult as being accepted in to college. 
If I won the lottery, practically disappeared from society, didn't have a care in the world and was in a mountain chalet somewhere,  and my phone pinged to remind me that it had almost been six months since my last psychiatry appointment, then I would scoot my toosh off that mountain and be in my doctors office asap. I am not messing around. 
So recently I went on the hunt for a  new talk therapist, and here are the steps I took:

Step One) I happily clicked boxes on the Psychology Today website to choose my perfect therapist: Female, between certain ages, no more than five miles from my home, specializing in these four or five specific areas, accepts new patients,  in-network with my insurance, has a nice profile pic (not some haphazard snapshot from her living room), a lovely written description of her therapy style, a soothing and professional sounding voicemail/website or receptionist. 

Yesss, I was already feeling more therapized just going through this intense screening process. I valued myself that much to take the time to find just the right person. 

Step Two) I realized I had to get my insurance plan in order - make sure I knew my coverage, etc. Exactly which frigging Florida Blue plan did I have - there are literally like 34 different options just under my type. So, I hunted for my password to my portal account for like two days, because I am very busy and important* and sometimes sleep.  

Step Three) Once I cracked the Fort Knox insurance website I tried to decipher what my exact coverage was and finally gave up and texted a trusted co-worker (who has my same plan) about our therapy coverage. 

Step Four) Realized a few of the therapeutic looking women I picked out may not be "in-network," so I spent some more time on Psychology Today and my own health insurance site, scouring for the right person who would soothe me, have the right mix of letting me cry but not wallow, and give me actual strategies to be a successful human -- all in the same session. 

And then... nine days later after countless interactions where:

 -my insurance was not accepted
-the therapist was not accepting new patients
-the therapist/receptionist was openly rude 
-I had to be currently admitted to a hospital for mental illness, to be a patient
-they could suspiciously get me in THAT DAY ("or tomorrow - I am open!") - Uh, no. 
-or no return call at all. 

I was forced to reevaluate.   
If I didn't need therapy before I needed it now.

Step Five) My new criteria:

Female, bewteen certain ages, no more than five miles from my home, specializing in these four or five specific areas, accepts new patients,  in-network with my insurance, has a nice profile pic (not some haphazard snapshot from her living room), a lovely description of her therapy style, a soothing and professional sounding voicemail/website or receptionist.  Seems like a relatively ok person.

I did eventually find someone that fits this criteria. And I think I cried a little on the phone with the receptionist when we  got to the part where we discussed an actual appointment date. 

So my tips for Tired Girls are this:
-Find your insurance login info and tattoo it on your inner thigh
-Cancel the making of home cooked meals, for like two weeks just so you can focus on this task
-Be open minded about exactly what the therapist will be like, but don't keep going to someone who is awful. I'll watch a Hallmark movie and feel better rather than spend an hour with someone that is a dick.
-Whisper the words "Fuck 'Em" anytime you hear people discuss insurance companies. 
-Do what seems appropriate to raise awareness about mental health resources in the US. I am a healthy, happy, educated, insured, bright, individual and it felt like I should have had more to show for all my effort here. 
-Be proactive - I highly recommend securing a therapist just to have on hand. Because trust me if/when you really need it, it will seem like an unbearable undertaking. You wouldn't only go to the dentist when your teeth are rotting. You go before, so they don't rot. 

Okay, I think I am done here. Both exhausted from what my brother would call this Bataan Death March of therapy searching and done with giving out un-requested advice. Good luck out there Tired Girls. 

Anyone have a tip I am missing? 

*not important at all

Monday, January 16, 2017

Armpit Detox Review -

I recently did an armpit detox. And it was as miserable as it sounds. It stunk literally and metaphorically. And I'll get right to it - it didn't work for me.

If you want to know more about what I did and how it went, then here you go:

First of all, my friend told me that an armpit detox was THE most privileged idea she had ever heard of. So I just want to be clear that I get that. This is like serious first world problem shit. 

So now that that's out of the way. I used Wellness Mama's plan for her armpit detox. I love Wellness Mama, so don't think I am criticizing that cute little nugget of natural living. I am just saying that somewhere between reading her post and me running back to "real" deodorant - something went wrong. Even taking a peak at her post now makes me think I should give it another try, but then I remember the horror...

So I bought bentonite clay at my local health food store and already had Bragg's Apple Cider Vinegar. I waited until January in Florida when it was at least a little cooler (my hope was I would be less sweaty). I also have the advantage of working from home, where I can, at times look practically homeless and it doesn't matter. So slathering goopy wet clay on my pits and cruising around my home half clothed for periods of each day and then not wearing any deodorant ever was totally manageable and frankly pretty on par with other beauty regimens I attempt. 

So clay and vinegar on pits? Check. The ability to look, feel and smell awful? Check. 

Soooo, a week or two went by of this. Every day a clay vinegar mask slid around on my pits until it dried and became crumbly and then crumbled all over the place, then a shower to scrub it off, shower floor with bentonite clay residue, NO DEODORANT after shower, the icky feeling of non-deodoranty armpits the rest of the time, the smell of clay and vinegar, the smell of what was surely my armpits "detoxing," and wearing clothes that accommodated my current armpit situation when I did have to leave the house. 
This is me, waiting to see what fresh hell comes next in this detox.
I envisioned the little pores of my cubbyholes unclogging with toxic chemicals and little puffs of fresh air coming through them. I would feel and smell like a daisy in no time, right? Right? For the love of God this was working right? I would not get armpit cancer. I would not be dependent on chemicals. I could use talcum powder on my pits like ladies did in the old days. This was going to work. 

Definitely didn't forget.
But T-Rex arms are accurate description.

And then I realized it was not only not working - it was definitely getting worse. Apparently my armpits really stink when left to their own devices.  Unclogged pores did not mean good smelling pores. I still kept at it though!!  But eventually I dug out my horrible, chemically deodorant and slathered it all over and felt human again. Maybe I didn't stick with it long enough. Maybe I just needed to get used to the miserable miserable miserable feeling of natural deodorant. I don't want armpit cancer, but I can't live that way. 

Has anyone else tried an armpit detox and actually feel like admitting it? Is there something I should have done better or different to make it work? 

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Goal Setting for Tired Girls

2017 better watch the eff out. This Tired Girl is semi-awake, and semi-angry (always something to get me revved up) and totally focused. I decided to try goal setting this year, and four days in - I like it. So I assume it will continue forever and I will never get tired of feeling this way and therefore 2017 is going to be great.

From Shining Academy
I decided goal setting seemed right for me while I played a game of solitaire (no judgment people) and realized if I thought about what card I could really use right then, it usually came up in the next couple of deals! Did I have supernatural powers to create the card I needed? No. (What a wasteful superpower that would be). 

 Was I aware of what I wanted and so I knew it when I saw it? Yes! I was waiting for the right card. You get the metaphor right? Boom.  So then it was on.  

After much internet research, I was hooked. So I'll cut to the chase - here are my recs if you are interested in goal setting, Tired Girl style, for 2017.  

1) Do a little post-mortem - what worked in 2016 and what did not? What were some of your best moments, choices, investments and what were your worst? Write that shit down. 

2) Let 2016 go... Take your biggest disappointments, write it down and burn it.  It's done. 
I haven't watched the Lord of the Rings movies but I couldn't pass this image up.
G'bye 2016. 

3) Think hard about three to five serious goals. Think BIG, but also be realistic. There is a sweet spot there. Then write down three to five steps or components to achieving each goal.  If it's possible to put some dates by the steps I think that is the way to go. Again, ambitious but not ridiculous. Don't go easy on yourself, but don't set yourself up for failure. Put those milestones on your calendar.

4) Post your goals where you can see them daily and maybe make a vision board. I am making a vision board - I honestly can not believe I have gone this long in life without making one. It's like I was created to have a vision board - I love crap like that.  I wrote a poem about them: 
Vision board vision board, I think I will hoard! 

5) Don't be afraid to tweak as the year progresses. I am not saying back off of the goals, just be open to changing things up. The point is to achieve your goals so figure out how that is going to be able to happen.  If you aren't going to lose 30 pounds in three weeks don't chuck the whole thing - just change your final date up. See what's working and how that can continue. 

I have a lot more to say about this topic, because it is my NEW FAVORITE SUBJECT. Be aware if you run in to me at Publix I may ask you what your goals are for this year just because I am interested in goals all around. But I will wrap this up. 

My Goal Setting Planner
I did look at LOTS of goal setting planners on Amazon and after much thought I chose this one based on my goals for the year. 

Your Best Year 2017: Productivity Workbook and Creative Business Planner

But here is another I considered.

Conquer Your Year: The Ultimate Planner to Get More Done, Grow Your Business, and Achieve Your Dreams

My friend, Tired Girl Jamie, chose this Goal Setting Journal: 2017 My Shining Year!

My planner from Michaels
There are tons on Amazon and many based on your goals, like blogging, entrepreneurship, getting healthy, spirituality, etc. 

I also bought a planner for the first time in a while. I chose the "Creative Year Black Marble 2017 Spiral by Recollections." All the planners are currently 50% off at Michaels.  And I always have a spiral notebook going. 

I feel like the awkward son from the new Vacation movie with his
dream journal, wish journal,  poetry journal, etc. 

If you are still here, I will share generally what my goals are for the year. I read that the more you write and say your goals out loud the more likely you are to achieve them.

Goal 1 - Has to do with weight loss. I am down about nine pounds from September and want to keep going to get back to fitting in to the majority of the clothes in my closet. I have a plan to do this. 

Goal 2 - Has to do with editing the novel I finished writing last year.

Goal 3 - Has to do with finishing my Tired Girl Cookbook

Goal 4 - Has to do with getting my home organized. 

I am excited about my goals because I feel like I can accomplish them if I focus and I am excited to enjoy them once they are accomplished. If you would like to share your goals with me I would love to read them. You can comment or email me at

Happy New Year Tired Girls!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...