learning to trust with anxiety
Start writing a post
Health and Wellness

A Very Simple Phrase Opened My Anxious Heart To Trust

Just a bit of kindness and empathy make all the difference.

Jon Tyson

I have been struggling with anxiety a lot the past few years. Part of my anxiety is my struggle to trust my friends and others with the concerns that are on my heart. After several friends broke that trust, it became harder than ever to learn who my true friends were.

I had been told time and again by a friend that my struggles were a burden and that my concerns "didn't matter." This was heartbreaking and really caused me to struggle to open up to others. I came to believe that my friends didn't want me to open up to them and that I should hide my pain and anxiety because that's what I am supposed to do not to be a burden on my friends and then lose them as a result of my neediness.

Very recently I was reminded that this is all a lie. I spent some time with some Christian friends who reminded me of what it means to be a good and caring friend.

At a party I attended, I observed a friend open up about some very difficult things she had struggled through in the past. She very openly described the struggles she had been through and continued to deal with. I was so proud of her for her honesty and bravery in sharing these challenging things, particularly in light of my own difficulties in sharing my own anxieties. A mutual friend responded to her with a phrase that I will never forget:

"Thank you so much for sharing with us."

This was mindboggling for me. Just this simple phrase was exactly what I needed to hear myself whenever I shared something personal. This simple phrase spoke everything: trust, empathy, sympathy, love, and friendship.

Not only was that friend accepted and loved despite her struggles, but she was also thanked for sharing them. She was welcomed to share them. While I consistently felt regret, shame, embarrassment, and fear from sharing my anxieties, at that moment just this one phrase made me feel safe (and I wasn't even the one sharing).

Why isn't this the accepted way to react when someone shares something deep and personal?

When my friends dismiss my concerns or react negatively to my anxieties it just worsens my struggles. Having a friend thank me for sharing would mean the absolute world to me because it would show me that I am being valued and accepted for who I am and that my friend is concerned about my happiness and wellbeing.

Thank you so much to that friend who showed me what it means to love and empathize with others. You helped reinstil in me the faith that it is okay to be vulnerable with others. You showed me that I can be myself, even if that self is hurt and struggling. It is okay to share my anxiety because real friends want to be there for you. Real friends will thank you for opening up to them. You showed me where I should put my trust.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

Planning Another Christmas Party

Don't just plan another plain party but get creative to have everyone wanting to come back next year!

Getty Famous

You know it's Christmas when the radio stations change to all of your favorite holiday tunes, the air is still, and stores have the best sales. With all my favorite things from Christmas happening my least favorite probably has to be when I have to go to another same old boring Christmas party that I get invited to every year. Here are some Christmas party ideas so that you won't have another sad Christmas party.

Keep Reading... Show less

High School Soccer is Wildly Important

For Young Players Who Want to Succeed at The Next Level

High School Soccer is Wildly Important

Whose choice is it? The parent? The player? There are a number of reasons that a kid may sit out of high school soccer, and to be completely honest; It is a huge mistake. High school soccer is the final piece in the puzzle that takes a player from above average or elite, to college ready by the end of their senior year. Every year thousands of talented athletes don't play for their high schools. Why though?

Keep Reading... Show less

8 Things That Should Be On Everyone's Holiday To-Do List

December is around the corner, are you ready?

8 Things That Should Be On Everyone's Holiday To-Do List

As they tend to say, its the most wonderful time of the year! People have begun to compile their Christmas to-do lists in anticipation for the season of sugarplums and gingerbread.

The history of the Christmas to-do lists goes back hundreds of years, almost as old as the holiday itself, however, people tend to fall out of this habit as they get older. This is unfortunate, as the theme of Christmas tradition can add bundles of the spirit of joy to your families.

Keep Reading... Show less

Fall Weather Must-Haves

Put away the swim suits and your favorite high-waisted shorts!


The transitional months of fall can cause some fashion headaches as you try to figure out what clothing to keep in your closet. With limited amount of college living space and the ever-unpredictable Nebraska weather, sometimes it’s difficult to know what should be taking up that precious closet space as you transition into winter. As you pack away those tanks and shorts for the chilly months ahead, get your closet ready with a few Fall must-haves. 

Keep Reading... Show less
Content Inspiration

Top 3 Response Articles of This Week

Take a look at the articles driving big conversations on Odyssey.


At Odyssey, we're on a mission to encourage constructive discourse on the Internet. That's why we created the response button you can find at the bottom of every article.

Keep Reading... Show less

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Facebook Comments