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Mental Health

Ice Cubes, Productivity, and Being Taken Advantage Of

This morning:

I was making my morning iced coffee at home an hour ago and noticed our bucket of ice in the freezer was getting low. I caught myself feeling annoyed. My two options: fill up our ice bucket with the ice cubes and re-make some ice in the ice trays OR use the ice for my coffee and passive-aggressively leave the small amount in the ice bucket and let one of my housemates do the chore. 

These thoughts were going through my head: “I feel like I am always doing this chore. I feel like I have been doing the trashes more lately too.” 

But my mind quickly reminded me that my housemates have had to take my laundry out of the dryer often because I am not timely on that chore hardly ever. Also, a few months ago, one of my other housemates was taking the brunt of emptying the trashes. I told myself … “All the chores even out. Buckle up, buttercup. Just get em done and don’t overthink this.” 

But I am me, and I overthink. And I overanalyze. 

So why? Why did the ice cubes totally bug me this morning? 

I felt like I was being taken advantage of. I let the thoughts stop there for a moment. But then I thought, so what? What if I AM being taken advantage of? Can I handle that? Why is that a problem? 


Putting it into perspective for myself: 

I’ve been sorely taken advantage of in the past and didn’t catch it until I was a “shell” of what I wanted to be. That freaked me out and made me very incapable of daily tasks at that time. It felt really scary. AND icing on the cake: I deal with suicidal thoughts and a lot of panic attacks in tough times. SO, with me in a bad spot of being taken advantage of emotionally and mentally for a long time, you can probably guess my suicidal thoughts and panic attacks were at an all-time high for my lil ol’ self. (Because this happened in the recent past to me, I can tell that I operate daily off of trying to protect myself from that state again). 

Therefore, I present to you a silly task of doing the ice tray chore. AND I present to you a pairing of a mental health discussion with it. 


I was curious to dig into my feelings about this. I kept thinking and found a “mental journey” of the following.


A logic loop:

  1. Am I being taken advantage of?
  2. If so, I feel like I am not respected. 
  3. If I am not respected, I am not heard and not given a chance to be heard in the future. 
  4. If I am not heard, that feels like I am unworthy. 
  5. I am lesser than. 
  6. If I am lesser than and unheard and unworthy, I can’t get anything done. The emotions are too strong and take up my time AND if no one will listen to me, then how will I make progress on my tasks? 
  7. If I am unproductive, I am unworthy. My value is heavily tied to my ability to produce. (As in many societies and individual relationships.) 
  8. If I am unworthy, I am unneeded and unwanted. AND I am internally allowed to think about suicide (a personal difficulty.) 
  9. When I think about suicide, I am unproductive and I feel like I can’t function. 
  10. If I can’t function, I am unworthy and I am allowed to think about suicide.
  11. When I think about suicide, I am unproductive and I feel like I can’t function.
  12. If I can’t function, I am unworthy and I am allowed to think about suicide. 
  13. When I think about suicide, I am unproductive and I feel like I can’t function.
  14. If I can’t function, I am unworthy and I am allowed to think about suicide.

See how it loops…? 

I am sure I could keep digging in and find more roots. (You know I will!!!) For now… this is partly where I get stuck.


To close out…

To close out these thoughts this morning, I am reminded that it hasn’t only been the ice cubes lately. I feel a bit lost in my ability to tell if I am being taken advantage of. Because of my past, I am now highly sensitive to opportunities where people can take advantage of me mentally, emotionally, etc. I am hyperactive in my thoughts of “Do I allow this?” I am grasping for control. And grasping for a way to tell myself that I choose all the things I am doing in my life. I am grasping for choice. 

The ice cubes won’t hurt me, and no one is actively trying to take advantage of my ability to do chores at the house. BUT I am feeling taken advantage of lately in life… In different areas than the ice cubes. I am feeling a lack of control. I am looking to change something. The ice cubes are just a sign post. 

Hi there! I am a passionate person who always has WAY TOO many things I want to do in life. My current passion, though, is my new business where I am working on consumer solutions for mental health education. justbebooks.com I love chatting and collaborating with cool people, so please reach out!
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