Everyone experiences anxiety once in awhile, but there are some who experience it more often than anyone should. This use to be me. Sure, I still get anxious about certain things but it used to be a lot worse. I remember for a long time I wasn’t able to cross the road by myself, I would overthink the situation and tell myself I was getting in the way of cars. I convinced myself that I knew what the people in the vehicles were thinking, and it was always negative. I wanted to almost be invisible, someone who didn’t cause any trouble or inconvenience anyone. After a combination of medication and therapy, I’ve worked towards resolving my anxiety. It’s not 100% fixed but I’m in a better place than before. I created a list that anyone with anxiety will understand.
- People who tell you “don’t worry about it- First off, no. Obviously, that’s the worst thing to say to someone. It's like telling someone to calm down, has that ever worked? No, it usually makes the situation worse
- People who use the term “panic attack” wrong- A panic attack isn’t when you’re just freaking out. It’s when you can’t breathe and everything is not okay.
- You can be anxious about anything- Even if it’s something small, it may be a bigger deal to you in your mind than others would perceive.
- Being up late at night- The worst is when you can’t fall asleep because your mind decides to think about everything all at once and your mind goes on overload and increases your anxiety
- Bad habits- Some people have nervous ticks. I chew my fingernails and my leg vibrates when I’m anxious. Other people play with jewelry, play with their hair or other bad habits. I usually don’t notice that I’m chewing my nails or my leg is shaking, unless someone points it out to me.
- Being too early or late- I always get anxious when I have to be somewhere at an exact time, so I always plan extra time in case I run into something that causes a delay.
- Talking to people- This one was always a problem for me. I became very anxious when I had to go into a store. I would purposely go to a self-checkout lane so I wouldn't have to interact with a person.
- Stomach aches- I’ve had problems when my stomach hurts so much due to me being anxious about something. Anxiety can cause physical pain! Ow!
Having an anxiety disorder sucks, but there are things that you can do to help ease the anxiety. Medication and therapy help a lot. It just depends on if you want help or not. You can try one or both, but seeking help is a step in the right direction. I never really thought anything about it, but when I noticed it was keeping me from doing everyday activities, I knew I needed to do something differently. It’s not fair to yourself to limit the things you do because you’re trapped by your own mind.