9:07 AM 

Self-care involves a lot and yesterday I shared a short story on the power of words, to me, a beautiful way to start healing. Books are a great way to escape the daily and enter a dream world where everything seems to be so much better, I was hungry to read book after book. 

My addiction to books got real when I studied about philosophy and started learning the deeper aspects of life. My friends weren't into that and I didn't know many people in my circle who could suggest me good reading material, since philosophy is somehow covered with a weird stigma of being crazy, hard to understand, and a little too old for today's modern times. Maybe that's what intrigued me. 

I got lost in the world of Nietzsche, I fell in love with Plato, and I was more than ready to study human beings, life, and the beautiful art of words. Metaphors, allegories, whatever comes my way. 

Until today, my home library is filled with beautiful books dealing with lots of philosophy, art, and a little visit to psychology through Carl Gustav Jung and others. Those books simply make me happy, but I also have to admit that some of them gave me a hard reality check and with this some days of thinking and disappointment. 

I feel inspired by ancient times. I studied history. I always want to learn. 

Learning about human beings and why we are how we are has always played a big part in my life. I don't only want to learn about my surroundings, but myself. What can I do to be better? What can I do to not waste my life? How much potential does every human being actually hide inside themselves? 

As already mentioned, reading so much about the good old days or romanticly described human nature, this can also put a big dark cloud above your head. Some people forget what they have read after 4 weeks, I kept every word close to my heart which made me sad very often. I read about flaws, mistakes, or just bad actions which I took very personal as an empath. I breathed it all in and I wanted to change the whole planet. Someone needs to do something....oh boy, crazy Sagittarius girl wants to save everyone. 

Then, all of a sudden, I find myself in my darkest years. I'm still reading a lot of philosophy, this time also a bit of psychology, because I try to understand my brain patterns. I try to understand my depression, and I want to learn how to deal with so much sadness. How can I be happy? How can I live my best life? Blah, blah. Those books are a good addition to every library, but I would not rely on those only. 

I gather so many books which deal with: fuck it, be happy, eat ice cream, dance, and just be. Okay, good, but when a person goes through depression and he or she can' even get out of bed in the morning, how in the world is this fuck it attitude even possible? It didn't help me a lot, to be honest. I absorbed the words, but I couldn't practice them during my daily. 

Instead, I was gathering tons of art books. My favorite artists, architecture, stories about colors, design - another great thing that lets my heart explode. Forgetting about human beings and what makes us so weird, just thinking about beautiful creations and all of the light.

I truly believe in art therapy and that's why I also released "You Are What You Feel" - my little workbook for young and old, dealing with mental health and art therapy. 
It's my comfort zone, my escaping, my sun, and my heart. It helped me a lot. 

Through the years, I always added new mental health books to my collection, though. I got pickier with the topics, since I learned more and more what I needed and what was not good for me. Reading about anxiety, for example, didn't make me feel so bad than reading about depression and trauma. 

I think it was last year, when I finally got the really perfect books that deal with mental health and my road to recovery. The books of Dr. David Burns helped me immensely to find the right attributes that help me have a sense of normality back and with my self-therapy which includes a lot of writing, I realized that I needed less books dealing with this topic. I was happy, I was proud. I got my staple of self-helpers of which I know I can turn to whenever I feel a certain way, being decorated with plenty of colorful post-its and notes inside which I wrote after finishing each book. 

When quarantine hit us, I was curious to read a little more about PTSD, since I also want to cover all kinds of mental health aspects on OFF COLOR to help not only people who suffer from anxiety or depression. I found a really great book which was such a good start and I couldn't even put my marker away! I learned a lot about trauma and mental health, but after reading half of the book, I was suddenly feeling worse after each chapter I finished. I actually closed the book and did not finish it. I am not planning to finish it, because I am not ready for the words. Self-care.

I reached a point where I am happy-ish and I experience a quiet normal daily. When I reach a low point, I totally know what to do, where to turn to, and how to soothe myself. Is it always working? Well, more or less - it really depends on what's going on, but still, I am doing well. I am just living life, just like you! I might feel it a bit harder, but as mentioned so many times here, I'm learning to love and appreciate feeling so deeply. 

Continuing with a book which would bring me to a state of desperation, sadness, anger, plus lots of confusion is not healthy and I don't allow my body to deal with this right now. 

Maybe I will finish the book someday, but not now. I got mad at myself for a second. Why do I get this book when I am actually doing pretty good right now? I don't need to torture myself further, I got the map to success and that's it. 

It's time to learn boundries, it's time to say no, and focus on yourself, your health. 
That's why I will not get a mental health book this year. You might laugh about this or wonder why I write so many words about it, but we should all be aware of the power of words. Some feel them harder, others don't even understand them. Out there are many empaths and also many people who soak up words and rhetorics which lead them to storm a Capitol. 

Brainwashing, manipulating, guessing... words are not always a positive influence. I learned that and I appreciate that lesson. 

There won't be a book about self-esteem, self-care, self-love, self-whatever. No books on mental health, energies, the brain, and how to live a healthy life. Nothing. This year, I am down for my arts and poetry again. Soaking up the beauty, the romantic metaphors that simply make me smile. 

Give me all the design books, maybe some biographies, interior things, art, art, art, oh, and we shouldn't forget cookbooks which bring a great zen to my life. 

What are your currently reading? 

I hope with today's words I can help you understand that choosing books or listening to speeches is something that does something with our brain. More or less. Choose a great influence and if you happen to notice that this influence is not good for you, then be kind to yourself and cut the chords. Do it for you and your mental health - you deserve it.