The Apocalypse of the Mind

Surviving the Apocalypse will probably be the most stressful thing you ever do. Considering that many of us (your fair writer included) already have mental health issues when we live in a developed country with clean water, regular food access, and life-saving medicine, what on earth are we to do when everything is on fire and the zombies are at the gate?
Well, the standard advice for managing mental health issues is even more important when everyone you love has died in front of you.

Talk about it:

Reach out to whatever community you have around you, whether that be your fellow mutants, your pet radioactive cats, or actual people (lucky!). Talk about your feelings, good and bad, and work out ways to manage them – together. A therapist or counsellor would be excellent, but since they’re all dead consider drawing a face on a sack of live rats and talking to that instead.

Eat healthy:

Alright, so you’re probably pretty limited on your diet right now, but do your best. Don’t just eat the canned beans – add some freeze-dried fruit and some mysterious green stuff from the cave walls to your diet, too. Your brain needs a balanced diet!

Try journalling:

There’s nothing like twenty pages of ‘Kill them all’ to express your feelings of furious, broken rage. If you don’t have paper, write it on walls in the blood of your enemies. Bonus: It scares off FUTURE enemies!

Get some exercise: 

Death fights in the cage will increase your adrenaline and help your poor tormented mind pump out serotonin. Plus, the rush that comes with surviving another day might block out all those terrible memories for an hour or two.

Don’t be ashamed to try medication:

Ok, so you might not have access to a psychiatrist or even a GP any more, but that glowing stuff that grows by the wasted river has to have some kind of effect, right? Right?

Meditation works wonders:

Block out the noise of screaming and gunfire and take deep breaths, imagining yourself in a peaceful natural scene that no longer exists anywhere.

Learn to self-soothe:

Lying under a bed with your fingers in your ears chanting ‘everything’s fine, everything’s fine’ might not be the healthiest activity but whatever keeps you going.

Practice self-care:

Self care means taking the time to look after your body, mind, and spirit. Whether it’s organising all your weapons by most kills, going to regular machine-god sacrifices,  or decorating your trophy skulls, be sure to set aside some time and avoid burnout.
 
We hope this helps you with your deteriorating mental state and keeps you alive and with it enough to grimly and stubbornly claw your way through another day.
(please note, this is not actual advice for mental health conditions. Please see your doctor if you feel like you may be depressed, anxious or otherwise mentally unwell. If you are considering suicide, reach out to someone on this list of crisis aids. This article is a work of humor)

Everyday Survival: Going to Work

Going to work is, on the surface, a straightforward and simple task. Unfortunately people are often caught off guard by the simple perils of going to and being at work that they fail to prepare properly for.
So, lucky you, you’ve got a job. But now you’ve got to keep it and if possible improve it by way of financial compensation or upward mobility in the organization that give you said job. This is not as simple as simply showing up and doing your job. No, people have to see you and formulate opinions about you and that’s where everyday survival tips come in.

Everyday Survival: Going to Work

1. If you’re on time, you’re late; if you’re early, you’re on time.
No one care that you have a life outside of work or that traffic exists or that anything aside from you got to work in time to be set up and working before it’s time to punch in. It shows forethought and self-management and give you the time to put yourself and your thoughts in order so as not to just jump in a react. That’s how dogs get skunked and bouncers get punched. Take you time to show up, assess the situation and your place in it, an then join in.
Leave early – Earlier than you think you need to. Give yourself at least a half-hour of early time because you’re better off tweeting in the parking lot for 20 minutes than running in out of breath just 5 minutes late.
2. You stink.
As a human, you likely sweat and it probably smells. If you’re a lady, you’ve got lady parts and those sweat and smell sometimes too – sorry dudes, it’s just a part of life, like this “ball sweat” I’ve heard about. No one wants to smell your stink. I mean, we’ve all had some epic long weekends in our twenties where we woke up on the couch and wondered what that smell was only to find out it was us. Maybe your face, under arms, or private parts.
It’s biology and it’s nothing to worry about. However it it something to be aware of and in control of. People notice smells and they’re distracting. so distracting they make you seems less intelligent – Why would I trust your opinion on sales strategies if you can’t even wash yourself properly?
Keep a stash of toiletries in your car or bag. Deodorant, mouth wash, floss, tiny disposable toothbrushes, wet wipes, feminine hygiene products – including scented liners and summer’s eve wipes.
Notice the lack of “perfume” and “cologne”? That’s because those things stink and make people gag or get migraines and make you smell like you have human stink that hiding under chemical-flower stink. Don’t try to mask your funk, fix it.
3. Murphy’s Law is Law
Murphy’s Law: Anything that can go wrong, will go wrong. When you’re going to work, hope for the best but prepare for the worst. Don’t put off car maintenance. Don’t try to squeeze in a coffee before the train instead of getting it in the city once you arrive. Don’t assume they’ll clear the snow enough for their to be a reasonable number of parking spaces. Don’t trust that capable of wearing white and eating food and drinking coffee before a big meeting without an incident.
Don’t go to work everyday under the assumption that because you have a job today you still will tomorrow. They may like you but business isn’t about feelings and if you don’t prepare for the worst and preempt issues like missing handouts, double booked conference rooms, skipping lunch, having a headache, then you’re not being realistic and you should be saving up for unemployment.
4. You’re not that pretty without makeup.
Sorry, ladies but in the real world, we don’t live in a Dove campaign. On the other hand it’s not YouTube beauty guru land either. If you have a meeting, complete with a meeting maker and someone who outranks you, put on a little  makeup. It sucks but it’s true.
Women are expected to wear enough makeup to look naturally fresh-faced and healthy. Mascara, BB Cream, blush and lip gloss are all it takes to look like you give a shit. Just like men should know when buttons all the way down a shirt and a tie are appropriate, women should know when people want to look at a filtered version of their faces.
Keep those four basics on hand at all times so you can always run to the bathroom and quickly put on a face people want to see. Guys, maybe keep a shirt and tie handy (but for God’s sake, don’t let it get wrinkled).
5. Assume you’ll be stuck here.
This is where my crazy, paranoid, apocalypse fever dreams come in. Look at your car and think about what you’d need if you were on a major highway and traffic just stopped for hours. Do you have what you need?
More than half a tank of gas at all times?
A bottle of water that’s not frozen solid?
A spare phone charger?
Your toiletries so you can show up without looking like you’ve been in traffic for hours?
An emergency car kit?
Your insurance information?
Self-defense skills?
Something to kill a zombie with?
A good playlist and or data plan?
A hair tie in case you get hot?
Your boss’ phone number?
Sneakers in case you need to walk/run?
A healthy imagination?
What do you consider a necessity for every day survival when you’re going to work? Nothing? Other things? Something I over looked?

Mental Illness in the Post-Apocalypse

Panic-attack
Panic-attack (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Hi there. I am a crazy person. My mental illness impacts every part of my life. Specifically, I am a person with severe depression and a panic disorder. It’s possible (undiagnosed, but confirmed as very likely by a psychiatrist) that I have Borderline Personality Disorder. I am medicated in order to control this, taking a regular dose of Citalopram, and I am in therapy.
Obviously, none of these things will be available to me post-apocalypse. This could be a problem.
Continue reading “Mental Illness in the Post-Apocalypse”

Don't be Fat… Or Do.

This isn’t about how I saw some obese person in the mall and thought to myself, “I’d never want a fat person in my apocalypse party because they’ll ruin everything.
No, this is about me being a chunk monster and realizing that I’m at a huge disadvantage and might want to either do something about it or look it in the eye and acknowledge it while planning my survival.
Jamie, Anninyn and Char have talked about getting fit for the apocalypse by running, walking and learning to fight. I talk about social manipulation and staying pretty…
It’s not that I don’t value physical fitness; it’s that I’m really bad at it.
That’s the saying after all: Write what you know.
I know about being chubby and weird and kind of good looking if I put some work in.
The problem is being fat, unlike being Black or a woman or Gay or ugly, is a very real disadvantage in an apocalypse. Not only because you’ll be less physically fit than your fellow survivors but also because everything about survival becomes infinitely harder.

A few things I know I’ll have to consider as a fat girl in the post apocalypse: Continue reading “Don't be Fat… Or Do.”

What's the first thing you wash in the shower?

One of the many frivolous things I wonder about when I’m wondering about post-apocalyptic life is hygiene. I’ve gone on at length about my lady parts, their mechanics, and how I plan to keep them baby free and satisfied. But recently I’ve been thinking about cleanliness.
Well, recently is a lie. I think about cleanliness daily and lady-specific cleanliness almost every time I see women surviving the end of the world alongside men. The Monthly Mess is one thing and The Daily Funk is another.
“The daily what now?” you may wonder. The running and sweating and wearing the same clothes day in and day out and not having toilet paper all add up to The Daily Funk.
Continue reading “What's the first thing you wash in the shower?”

Colds and Flus and The Apocalypse, Oh My.

I’m sick. I have a cold. It’s loud and uncomfortable and I’m full of medicine.
How am I supposed to deal with a cold during the apocalypse? I can’t pile up pillows and alternate guzzling night and day medicine.
I should try some hippy apothecary shit while I have the chance but I really just want to sleep peacefully, breath without coughing, and not be in constant minor pain.
And speaking of noise, there is no way to hide someone coughing the way I’m coughing. There is almost no suppression for sale that can tame this noise.
Seriously, fuck this noise.
I’m the worst thing in the office and I’m sleeping on the couch to be polite.
One thing that has worked for me a bit that will be around post-apocalypse: honey. I put it in water or drink it straight from the bottle.
Most of the articles I’ve read discount the use of Zinc or echinacea to boost the immune system or combat colds, they also seem to agree that vitamin c can be helpful but is not a remedy or preventative. Boo. I guess I need a wizard and a spell book.
WebMD offers 8 Tips to Treat Colds and Flu the ‘Natural’ Way, a list that includes gargling with salt water and keeping the right fluids in and out of your body.
Do you know any solutions? Solutions to have handy in case of apocalypse.

Your period post apocalypse.

OK, male readers. If you are squeamish about period talk, you may not want to read this one. But as a survival blog with female writers and a slant where we look at the stuff people don’t think about, you knew this was coming.
Women have periods. It’s a fact. There are things that can stop a woman having her period (being very underweight or overweight, pregnancy, certain medications, certain medical conditions, menopause) but, in general, if you are a female human between about 13 and 50 you are bleeding from your vagina every month.
Continue reading “Your period post apocalypse.”

Illness after The End.

First things first, I apologise for the rambling nature of this post. I’ve spent the last few days working on my novel, completely forgot I had a post to do and am still slightly in a world of my own.
I want to talk about illness post apocalypse. We’ve covered it briefly (by necessity, I am not a doctor) but I’ve spent the last three weeks fighting off the same cold, and it made me think of how such a thing could affect us when the world is smashed flat.
Continue reading “Illness after The End.”

Illness after The End.

First things first, I apologise for the rambling nature of this post. I’ve spent the last few days working on my novel, completely forgot I had a post to do and am still slightly in a world of my own.
I want to talk about illness post apocalypse. We’ve covered it briefly (by necessity, I am not a doctor) but I’ve spent the last three weeks fighting off the same cold, and it made me think of how such a thing could affect us when the world is smashed flat.
Continue reading “Illness after The End.”

Survival Sex Kit (not safe for some works)

So, when the power goes out and the liquor has run down, someone might get horny.
This brings me back to that episode of Seinfeld when Elaine’s favorite contraceptive is discontinued and she goes out and buys as much of it as she can. But then she rations it. She judges men more carefully and while she might like a guy, she also has to determine if they’re truly “sponge worthy.”
We must remember to invest in some of our baser needs to stave off maddness. But we can’t just start doing every Tom, Dick, and Harry who offers a leer because it’s good for our state of minds. That’s how you create Super Aids, Syphilmidia, and Babies. We need to be able to indulge and ration.
Solution: Invest in an Emergency Sex Kit. Continue reading “Survival Sex Kit (not safe for some works)”