a young woman's experience with anxiety

I Forgot I Had Anxiety

web1 Sometimes I forget I have anxiety.

Weird, right?

My mind gets caught in a messy, sticky web of scary, contradictory messages and I instantly react without challenging the thoughts.

It’s like I walk around in an invisible anxiety cloak that I didn’t realize I had on until it comes off.

It’s really difficult to practice self-care and really be there for myself when I’m not realizing I’m having a problem.

Does this happen to anyone else?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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venting

Imagei don’t want to use this blog as a punching bag…but forgive me this once. i need to vent, and any feedback would be helpful.

anxiety makes me do stupid things sometimes. usually those stupid things involve other people. particularly, people interested in me and i in them.

without getting into specifics…i assume the worst about myself. it’s my knee-jerk reaction. my first thought.

sometimes the damning thought is in my mother’s voice, or the voice of the mean girl in high school. sometimes it’s in my own voice. but whatever it is, it’s a powerful thought.

powerful enough for me to act in accordance with it, whether it’s true or not. it feels true. i act on the fearful thought because i feel like it protects me from the seemingly inevitable real manifestation of it.

but this is all most likely caused by more than anxiety.

i’m just so mad at myself today. i really want to give myself a swift kick for doing this again. i feel like such a jerk-face, all over again.

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Imageone way to effectively deal with obsessive, persistent thoughts is to just let them be there; notice them without engaging them.

let me just say that that is one of the hardest things in the world to do.

despite doing pretty well lately, i had a not so great day today. the kinda day where you wake up and you just don’t feel so great.

anyway, so i had a moment where i was just so fed up with my mind going back and forth, i was ready to freak out from sheer aggravation. but, in the midst of my frustration, i got distracted by a funny moment on “roseanne” (i love that show. yes, i watch re-runs. lol). i ended up watching the whole scene, then the whole episode, then i finally just sat back and gave into the entire marathon that was on.

i just chose to enjoy the show despite my mind doing its whirring and swirling and its other typical crap. i realized that worrying is not the solution…it hasn’t helped in the past and it’s not going to help now.

so, i just pictured my mind as a conveyor belt. with all types of packages filled with worries and scary thoughts, all traveling down the belt. and instead of picking up a package and opening it, i acknowledge it and i just let it keep on going down the belt. you’re essentially just sitting there, letting the thoughts be there without figuring them out.

worries were darting in and out, especially during commercials, but i just stuck to the plan. if you try this technique, don’t be surprised if your worries multiply at first. practice, practice, practice, my friend. in time it will get easier.

for more tips or refreshers on how to deal with anxiety, this link helped me out today.

be well <3,

anxietyflower

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© PicturePerfectGallery.net

i went on my first date ever recently.

i fell in love once, and it was both hilarious and heartbreaking. I’ve been pursued by others since, but I didn’t have that love-at-first-sight feeling that I was spoiled by the first time around and just wasn’t interested.

I was introduced to the son of my mother’s friend/coworker a few days ago. We have a lot in common, and are on similar wavelengths. We met two days before he left and we met up on both those days. The first day I was fine, the second day, my anxiety was getting to me.

I was nervous. Wondering things like… is he gonna put his arm around me? Or, are we supposed to be, like, making out at this point? lol. Well, none of that happened. And towards the end of the night we both loosened up and goofed off a little. Almost like both of us were relieved it was over. Weird. O_O

It was nice to go out with someone and just talk about stuff and they kinda understand where you’re coming from. It was neat and it made me feel good and happy and human.

But that’s another one of my goals for lucky ’13. Being less shy and anxious in intimate settings. Or, accepting that I get shy and anxious in intimate settings. Maybe that’s a better way to put it?

And I’ve paid for my driver’s lessons…now just waiting to schedule the days! Cool. 🙂

One thing I’ve learned is…it’s always good to do things that scare you every once in awhile. It could be a little, baby goal. Or a big, public display. Just take a chance…and be proud of yourself for trying to do better. Anxiety has stopped me before, but I really am working on not letting it stop me from doing things now. We’re all works in progress.

one of the things i’ve learned over the years is that life doesn’t just happen. you have to do the work and take the action to get to where you’d like to be.

new year’s resolutions is only a corny tradition if you’re not sincere and committed to it. and i am so sincere about what i’m about to say. and i’m committed to it because it’s important.

i’m getting my driver’s license in 2013. i have tried for years and i couldn’t do it because i was so nervous behind the wheel. and i’m nervous now. it’s okay to be nervous, scared — this is a scary goal for me (lol…what isn’t scary though?), but i wanna do it anyway because i have to. i’m 23 dang it. i’m committed to doing this because it is a step toward independence and i can do it. just because i have people who can take me places and available public transportation doesn’t mean that i don’t have to learn how to drive. public transportation and gracious family members are enablers in my mind. i have the ability to do this myself. if i sound intense, it’s because i am an intense person. lol.

so pray for me as i work towards reaching this goal. it’s very important.

remember: the strength of a muscle may depend on the confidence with which it is used. claire weekes, my favorite, said that. (^.^)

happy new year everyone!

enjoy.

no filter: just me, my phone and the sky.

this pic just reminds me that it’s okay to take a break from the inner ping-pong machine sometimes. to pull myself out of my head and look around. to see and appreciate the beauty of the world around me. reminds me that the world is so much bigger than my worries. it’s quite a comfort. so take some time to get wonderfully lost in something today because it’s probably more needed than you think.

i have some insights and tips to share with my anxiety buddies. it’s been a challenging couple of months but i’ve grown a lot and hope to share it all in the near future. just gotta pull the thoughts together. ^.^

Dr. Claire Weekes has been my “anxiety angel” since I discovered her in 2009, when I was facing all sorts of issues — really hard life stuff as well as emotional issues. Her book, “Hope and Help for Your Nerves,” is an older but unpretentious and refreshingly simple (simple doesn’t mean easy, though) way to deal with anxiety and depression. Here are some nuggets from the book! She was a brilliant lady. ❤

Dos and Don’ts

1. Do not run away from fear. Analyze it and see it as no more then physical feelings. Feelings are not facts, do not be bluffed.

2. Accept all strange sensations connected with your illness. Do not
fight them. Float past them. Recognize that they are temporary.

3. Let there be no self-pity.

4. Settle your problems as quickly as you can, if not with action, then by glimpsing and accepting a new point of view.

5. Waste no time on “What might have been” and “If only…”

6. Face sorrow and know that time will bring relief.

7. Be occupied. Do not lie in bed brooding. Be occupied calmly , not feverishly trying to forget yourself.

8. Remember that the strength in a muscle may depend on the confidence with which it is used.

9. Accept your obsessions and be prepared to live with them
temporarily. Do not fight them by trying to push them away. Let time do
that.

10. Remember your recovery does not necessarily depend “entirely on
you” as so many ppeople are so ready to tell you. You may need help.
Accept it willingly, without shame.

11. Do not measure your progress day by day. Don’t count the months,
years you have been ill and despair at the thought of them. Once you
are on the right road to recovery, recovery is inevitable, however
protracted your illness may have been.

12. Remember withdrawal is your jailer. Recovery lies on the other side of panic. Recovery lies in places you fear.

13. Do not be discouraged if you cannot make decisions while you are ill. When you are well, decisions will be more easily made.

14. Never accept total defeat. It is never too late to give yourself another chance.

15. Practice don’t test.

16. Face. Accept. Float. Let time pass.

If you do this, you WILL recover.