As I’ve mentioned in past posts, I hate when people seem to think that they can fix, off the top of their heads(!), problems that have taken me years to even define. It’s rude and almost never helpful, almost always hurtful. I strive in this blog to never give flippant advice, and to never assume that I know how something will affect any given reader.
And toward that end: The Menu Approach.
When I was feeling better, I would use The Menu Approach when there were too many cool things to do. To avoid becoming overwhelmed at picking the right one, I would pretend all my options were on a menu.
I might want to order everything, but if I tried to eat it all I’d have a terrible night. Also, I don’t expect myself to always pick the absolute best thing on a menu. I just pick something and it’s almost always perfectly good. (I know plenty of people who do stress out about menu choices. If you’re one of them – this post might be liverwurst.)
I try now to use The Menu Approach when people give me advice, even if they don’t present the advice as optional. Oh, you think I should wake up earlier because it might help me avoid nightmares? Thanks. I’ll put that on the menu, but I feel NO sense of urgency in trying it out.
I use The Menu Approach to rob the advice of its sting. The “wise adviser” may not realize that mornings are the hardest part of the day for many depressed people, and that making your morning longer might be a special kind of torture.
So instead of getting mad at them for thinking they know what’s good for me when they do NOT understand what’s going on with me, I put it on The Menu. And sometimes I just let it sit there. Like liverwurst.
P.S. This blog is full of liverwurst! Please treat it as such