Our minds have a knack for controlling our lives. For better or worse, we can't do but so much to control the depths our thoughts go to. Most experts go on the record saying the average human can have anywhere from 50,000 to 80,000 thoughts each day. That's an insane amount of thinking for any one person to do, and unfortunately for us, more of those thoughts can tend to be negative rather than positive. Left unchecked, this kind of mental pathway can be extremely dangerous.
Don't allow your thoughts to go unheard.
You obviously don't need to be suffering from anxiety and/or depression to have negative thoughts from time to time, but those of us that are (or at least believe to be) are especially susceptible to locking them within ourselves. The idea of reaching out to anyone seems crazy. Impossible, even. What if people don't like what they hear? Their opinion of you may never be the same, and the reaction (even if that reaction is to ignore it altogether) might just make your condition even worse.
In some cases, you may feel as though there is no one willing to listen to you in the first place, regardless of whether you'd be willing to let the information out. Naturally this isn't true, but it still feels like dumping such information on them will be more of a burden than a solution. If someone you reach out to genuinely chooses to leave you hanging with the problem, then they shouldn't have been considered your support system to begin with.
In more cases than not, allowing the people in your life to be aware of the mental struggle that's eating you alive can only end well, even if you don't see results immediately...which you likely won't.
Cut your toxic thoughts out of your system.
As stated before, the human brain has a way of thinking, rethinking, and overthinking all day and all night with no room to stop until your heart does. Most of these thoughts are probably just throwaway moments where you're observing something from your immediate surroundings or situation. At the same time, others are perhaps more troubling.
When you think about someone or something negatively, they have a better chance of reoccupying the space in your thoughts. Regardless of whether or not the subject of question is still actively a part of your life, the thoughts of them linger and haunt you with visions of better outcomes that were never meant to be.
There's not much simple words can do for you here - you just need to make an active effort to shut these thoughts from your brain whenever you feel them coming up. This is NOT to say you should bottle up your emotions, which is an entirely separate danger - but you should avoid letting these thoughts control you rather than the opposite. Seek therapy on your own time and use that opportunity to let these emotions out and pursue further treatment, but don't allow the pain to become your personality.
(DISCLAIMER: I'm honestly speaking as a bit of a hypocrite making this statement as I've failed to take those precautions often enough myself, and that's one of my larger goals for 2020 as a whole. With hope, that will improve)
Take any and all opportunities to improve your breathing.
Sounds like a small thing, doesn't it? Well, it isn't.
If your situation is especially toxic, you may find that running into anyone remotely connected to that time in your life can be a trigger for your emotions to shine through (even more so when running into the person(s) in question themselves). Panic attacks can hit hard and fast, leaving you gasping for air, among other symptoms that vary between cases.
When these moments arise, prioritize your breathing above all else. Focus on something else in the area, and start taking deep breaths, in and out, counting to ten and back down repeatedly. Allowing more oxygen into your system can help clear your head, keeping you from speaking or acting in a way that might worsen the situation further. I can't say this enough.
Your mind takes time to grow, so keep at it!
Nobody has ever tried to fool others into believing mental health is an easy goal to reach. People who claim it is are probably hiding from their insecurities, and many who recognize the struggle are too terrified to act on it. Don't let yourself fall into either of these parties. You can't do anything for your loved ones or the world until you've helped yourself, and no one can make that first step for you.
Opportunities are waiting around every corner for you, and it's time you answered your call. Free your mind from the endless self-inflicted suffering and try something new for size. Look around for therapy! Exercise! Focus on the people still supporting your journey!
The more effort you put into bettering yourself, the more others can help shape you into the best version of yourself you can be. The longer you wait to be honest about your situation, the more work it will take to show you that your life doesn't have to be this way. Take the first step today and let your voice be heard. What begins as pain, can become your source of strength.