5 Ways In Which My Anxiety Affects My Life Daily

5 Ways In Which My Anxiety Affects My Life Daily

Don't worry, your anxiety is definitely accepted by the world.
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If you're like me, anxiety is a real struggle on a day to day basis. Anxiety is so unique for anyone that has it because it affects each and every person differently. If you are a close friend or family member, you might be surprised when I tell you my little anxiety habits. You could have noticed them, but never thought anything of it. Most of the habits I have are a response to try and keep my anxiety on the down low. It is always a constant struggle, but that's why it is important to always remember how great your life is. Just breath in and out. Hopefully for those of you who feel alone, some of the things I talk about might make you feel better. Just know you are not alone, and that I am always here for you if you need to talk.

1. I Over Analyze Just About Everything.

I am not kidding when I say everything. The slightest remark someone says could push my thoughts into a million directions. One little joke that someone says could throw me off. This is what my brain asks. Do they really mean that? Do they hate you? Why would they say that? Does this person just hang out with me to make fun of me? These thoughts are crazy and they are always hard to harbor. A better example would be when I text a girl. This is no joke either. After that person will go to bed, I will read all the text messages a couple times over and over again to make sure I didn't say anything bad. I constantly worry that I messed up the friendship. I worry they might hate me. You could ask my family because I have legit asked them if they hate me. My sister could text me something really short, and I will automatically assume she is annoyed of me or doesn't want to deal with me. I texted her one day when she was at a funeral, and she didn't respond for about two hours. I had anxiety that entire time because I thought she was ignoring me. I would check my phone every minute because I was on edge. I told her one day, "I hope you don't hate me because I have anxiety." Obviously she loves me, but my brain always tells me differently. What I have learned is that text messages are always deceiving and do not reflect how a person actually feels. I don't do well with getting yelled at because I shut down. I think too much into it. I assume that my boss, workers, friends, or family hate me or think that I am dumb. When I give a speech or presentation I constantly think about how it was bad. I think about what people think of me, or how I look dumb now. You have to always tell yourself that these thoughts are momentary, not long lasting or true.

2. I Constantly Feel Like I am Being Judged.

My social anxiety in this aspect deals with how I talk, how I dress, or even how I drive. I hate this feeling more than anything in the world. I hate when people stare at my tattoo, or just stare at me in general. I feel like they are judging my clothing, my hair, or my habits. I feel as if they think my tattoo is "girly" or it's a stupid quote. I have always been the kid that was shaking his leg in class like he has had to go pee for over an hour. I can't help it. It calms me down, but I've had people look at me when I do it. I bite my nails constantly. My mom would always yell at me for the dirty habit, but i couldn't help it. I always felt that she judged me for it. My biggest habit is that i talk 24/7. Ask any of my friends because I know they get so annoyed of me. I am sorry to everyone who is close to me, but I have to talk everything out. I'll even talk to myself sometimes when I am super stressed out. If I have a speech coming up, I will probably repeat my worry for giving it at least ten times a day. I apologize roommates. I honestly just have to convince myself verbally that I can do it and that I will get through it. I have to keep telling myself that I won't get judged for writing this article, but I know I will anyways. You just have to learn to not care what people think about you. Way easier said then done.

3. I Have Been Going to Therapy to Deal With My Anxiety

I'm honestly not ashamed to say I go to therapy. I hate when people say that you need to have a serious issue to go therapy. That is incorrect. Therapy is amazing in that you can honestly talk about anything. I talk about school, grades, relationships, my anxiety, but most importantly the recent death of my brother-in-law, Kris. His death increased my anxiety to the point where I had to honestly be alone a lot because I would just break down crying. I would worry that I didn't do enough or that I wasn't a good brother. I constantly over analyze the situation. I have finally started to move on, but the death of a loved one will never leave your mind. I constantly think about him and how much I loved him. That's one thing that even if I tell you about it, you will truly never understand how sad I feel. Therapy is helping me deal with all of my emotions. I may begin medication soon if my anxiety doesn't get any better. My therapist even recommended me to see a doctor to get my anxiety checked out. I'm not afraid to say that because I know there are many people who take anxiety medication. There's no shame in that. The one serious issue with me is that my anxiety can get so bad that I can't sleep or my stomach will hurt. I won't eat as much sometimes because I am just worrying too much. I have been talking in my sleep a lot more, and even sleep walking once in a while. I haven't done that since I was a little kid. I am learning how to do deep breathing exercises to relax me. I keep a journal now of how my anxiety got triggered, and how i dealt with it. I constantly listen to my music. That is my only happy place. My music takes me to a place of serenity. I talk to Kris even though he isn't here. I tell him what's going on in my life, how much I miss him, and that I think about him everyday.

4. My Anxiety Tells Me That I Will Never Be Loved.

Everyone who knows me knows that I am usually happy and fun to be around. I love everyone with all my heart. I would risk my own life for any of my friends or family because I genuinely care about everyone. One of my favorite quotes from the bible goes something like this. "Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends" (John 15:13). I give all that I have to my friends and family. My anxiety in return tells me that I am being used. I feel like people use me because I am funny or usually positive. I'm afraid they are just using me to boost themselves up, then drop me. I give good advice and love listening to people. It stinks that I feel that way, but I really can't help it. I feel that I am never good enough for relationships. I don't think I am good looking, or am even that smart. I know that I am pretty smart, but I have a negative view on myself. I feel like the death of my brother is too much baggage and that will scare people. I'm scared that my anxiety is too much for people. For this reason I have trust and commitment issues. I'm terrified that I will be alone for the rest of my life because I am scared I will never be able to control all my worrying or that someone will never truly love me enough to deal with me. Another quote from my favorite love movie, P.S. I Love You, resonates in my life everyday. "So now, all alone or not, you gotta walk ahead. Thing to remember is if we're all alone, then we're all together in that too." We all must walk together. For anyone out there who feels this way don't worry. I'll always be there right by your side.

5. I Have Habits You May Have Never Noticed

I love telling people my habits because they will always say they did notice but just assumed it was nothing. When I get in super awkward situation, I will flex or stretch my neck out. It honestly looks like I may be twitching, but I'm not. It is just something I have always done. When I feel nervous or anxious, I will run my hands through my hair. I will crack my fingers all the time even when I can't crack them. You could watch me crack them, then a few minutes later try to do it again. It makes me feel better trying to crack them. I shake my leg when I get really anxious. I will bite my nails constantly. I will listen to a song on replay because it makes me feel good. While typing this article I have listened to Stand By Me by SoMo at least 30 times. No, I am not joking. I chew my gum really loud because when I hear the noise it stops me from thinking about random things. I always crinkle my nose. This habit started up when I started college. I will shrug my nose or flair my nostrils. I can't look you in the eyes for very long because that makes me feel awkward. I'll just stare at my tattoo because that reminds me of Kris. It's really ironic of me, but I love to stare at people. I hate when people do it to me, yet I do it to others. I paint a picture of them in my head. I'll guess what their parents look like, how nice they are, do they have siblings, and do they like Loras. It's kind of funny to do, and it gets rid of my anxiety. I have a habit of always telling jokes in serious situations because I feel awkward. That always gets me yelled at. An awful habit is that I always just assume the worst possible outcome. I don't know why I do it, but for some reason when I'm in mood I like to stay in a mood. Just remember that nobody judges you for your anxiety habits. I have to constantly remind myself of that.

I will leave you with my favorite quote which I also have tattooed on my body. It is called Invictus by William Ernest Henley. This poem was read by my other brother at Kris's funeral. "Out of the night that covers me, black as the pit from pole to pole, I thank whatever gods may be for my unconquerable soul. In the fell clutch of circumstance I have not winced nor cried aloud. Under the bludgeoning of chance my head is bloody, but unbowed. Beyond this place of wrath and tears looms but the Horror of the shade, and yet the menace of the years finds, and shall find me, unafraid. It matters now how straight the gate, how charged with punishments the scroll, I am the master of my fate: I am the captain of my soul."





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I'm The Girl Without A 'Friend Group'

And here's why I'm OK with it

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Little things remind me all the time.

For example, I'll be sitting in the lounge with the people on my floor, just talking about how everyone's days went. Someone will turn to someone else and ask something along the lines of, "When are we going to so-and-so's place tonight?" Sometimes it'll even be, "Are you ready to go to so-and-so's place now? Okay, we'll see you later, Taylor!"

It's little things like that, little things that remind me I don't have a "friend group." And it's been like that forever. I don't have the same people to keep me company 24 hours of the day, the same people to do absolutely everything with, and the same people to cling to like glue. I don't have a whole cast of characters to entertain me and care for me and support me. Sometimes, especially when it feels obvious to me, not having a "friend group" makes me feel like a waste of space. If I don't have more friends than I can count, what's the point in trying to make friends at all?

I can tell you that there is a point. As a matter of fact, just because I don't have a close-knit clique doesn't mean I don't have any friends. The friends I have come from all different walks of life, some are from my town back home and some are from across the country. I've known some of my friends for years, and others I've only known for a few months. It doesn't really matter where they come from, though. What matters is that the friends I have all entertain me, care for me, and support me. Just because I'm not in that "friend group" with all of them together doesn't mean that we can't be friends to each other.

Still, I hate avoiding sticking myself in a box, and I'm not afraid to seek out friendships. I've noticed that a lot of the people I see who consider themselves to be in a "friend group" don't really venture outside the pack very often. I've never had a pack to venture outside of, so I don't mind reaching out to new people whenever.

I'm not going to lie, when I hear people talking about all the fun they're going to have with their "friend group" over the weekend, part of me wishes I could be included in something like that. I do sometimes want to have the personality type that allows me to mesh perfectly into a clique. I couldn't tell you what it is about me, but there is some part of me that just happens to function better one-on-one with people.

I hated it all my life up until very recently, and that's because I've finally learned that not having a "friend group" is never going to be the same as not having friends.

SEE ALSO: To The Girls Who Float Between Friend Groups

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12 Simple Ways To Ease Your Anxiety

These are some super simple ways to handle your stress at home.

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Anxiety and stress are very common problems for many of us in today's society.

Over 70% of adults face some sort of anxiety or stress in their lives.

It can really be overwhelming and can seriously affect our mood for the rest of the day.

Pushing these feelings of anxiety and stress aside and letting them build up does nothing but cause more harm to our minds and bodies.

Sometimes, we just need a quick and easy way to help alleviate some of this stress to help us get through the day and to help us feel better.

Here are 12 ways to do just that:

1. Practice deep breathing

Mental stress and anxiety can cause your body to respond in physical ways. Since it affects your sympathetic nervous system, you might experience elevated heart rate, shortness of breath, or lightheadedness. Breathing deeply and slowly can help slow your heart and ease your body back into a calm state. When I panic or feel overwhelmed, I breathe in slowly through my nose, think of one thing that makes me happy, slowly breathe out through my mouth, and repeat until I can feel my mind and body begin to calm.

2. Light a candle or start up your essential oil diffuser

My personal favorite scent to soothe my anxiety is lavender. However, you can also try chamomile, rose, orange, jasmine, sandalwood, or whatever else might help you.

3. Exercise

This is a big one, but can also be a very difficult one. Whenever you're feeling extremely anxious or overwhelmed, it might be hard enough for you to get yourself out of bed, let alone do any serious exercising. My best advice is to be proactive and try to pay attention to when you first start feeling your anxiety creep up on you. Just go ahead and get up and go for a walk, run, or whatever form of exercise you prefer!

4. Read a book

For me, there's nothing like curling up with a good book to help calm my nerves. Whenever I am knowingly going into a situation that will make me anxious, such as traveling, I always make sure to bring a book to read whenever I start to feel overwhelmed. Reading helps me to temporarily escape my anxieties and can be a big help in giving myself some much needed time to calm down.

5. Do yoga and practice meditation

Yoga is such a helpful activity for those with anxiety and stress! It kind of is just a combination of many different anxiety-relieving techniques (exercise, deep breathing, and mindfulness). There are many different apps, books, classes, and websites you can use as a guide and help to do yoga. You can find what positions, locations, and situation are best for you. Doing yoga gives you a great opportunity to think about and reflect on your feelings and worries.

6. Spend time with loved ones (yes, even your furbabies)

Sometimes, all we need is a little love and reassurance in our lives to alleviate some of our anxieties. Spending time with your family, friends, and pets can help us to see and remember the good things we have in our lives. So many times, those of us with anxiety tend to seclude ourselves and that makes it easy to forget the good we have.

7. Drink more water

Caffeine is a stimulant and can cause feelings of anxiety. It can make you feel jittery and can be a cause for elevated heart rate. Drinking more water not only helps you physically (like hydrating your skin and body), but it can also do wonders for your mental health. When your body is unhealthy and unhappy, that can be a big factor in feelings of depression and anxiety.

8. Take a short nap

If you begin to feel overwhelmed or anxious, sometimes it can do some good to just take a short 30-minute nap. Just give yourself some time to rest your mind and body and face the issue with a new focus and fresh thoughts.

9. Journal

Even though writing down your feelings, bad or good, can be helpful, when you're feeling anxious or overwhelmed, try focusing on the positive! Write down a few things that made you happy today or a few things that you're grateful for. Don't let yourself be bogged down by the negative.

10. Clean

This might not work for everybody, but I know that sometimes when I'm feeling restless or anxious, cleaning and decluttering can help clear my mind. Basically, it's just good to find something to put your focus on when your anxious thoughts feel like too much. Try to pick a task and focus on that until you're finished. You'll likely find, in the end, that you feel much better than before you started.

11. Listen to happy and soothing music

Listening to music is a BIG help to some people with anxiety. However, you need to be mindful of what you're listening to. Don't put on the breakup playlist you made when you were 13. Find happy or soothing songs and make yourself a playlist of songs with themes of positivity.

12. Don't bottle up your feelings

This might just be the most important advice I can give you when it comes to handling your anxiety. The worst thing that you can do is to suppress your feelings and try to force yourself to forget about them. Hiding or bottling up your feelings might help temporarily, but that will just make you feel worse in the end. Talk to someone or try one of the other methods I mentioned to face your anxiety, but don't pretend like it doesn't exist.

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