Hi all, in this blog I’m going to be covering anxiety and how I cope with it. I will also be giving you some pointers and tips to help you personally.
So, first off let me explain what anxiety is for those of you who are unsure or curious. Anxiety is a condition where one feels nervous or scared. It feels different for everyone and there are lots of different variations of anxiety. I personally have anxiety when I’m in a situation that makes me uncomfortable. I have anxiety especially if I am alone and out of the house. I sometimes have symptoms such as dizziness where I feel I may faint or fall over uncontrollably and depersonalisation where I feel disconnected from myself, my situation and everything moves in slow motion. One of my biggest fears is fainting which naturally makes me anxious which makes it worse. Basically, it’s a vicious circle.
Some people describe anxiety like drowning; it feels like you’re sinking and you can’t save yourself. Some people are socially anxious where they feel nervous or uncomfortable in social situations. I also have social anxiety because I constantly think people are judging and criticizing me. Anxiety impacts my life by dictating what I should wear, how I walk and what I say. It’s also common to go over a conversation over and over again in your head because you think you said something silly or idiotic.
Some people, like me, experience panic attacks where you feel a fire in your chest and all logic melts away. I think the worst possible things I think could happen, even though they won’t. Symptoms can include dizziness, nausea, sweating and breathlessness. Your heart rate quickens because of the “fight or flight” instinct and you may feel overwhelmed with bad thoughts and situations.
I try some techniques to try to avoid panic attacks and they help to calm me down. I have listed them below:
When I am on the brink of an anxiety attack I continually tell myself that I am okay; that I need to stay calm and try to say soothing things to myself. I sometimes even create stories in my head to think about something else. Whichever tactic or sentences you come up with to help soothe anxiety, it is an individual choice personal to you and what I say to myself might not work for you – try having conversations with yourself and see what choice of words calms you the most.
You also have to remember anxiety won’t hurt you and that you will always be okay – even if you panic, it will be over. You are giving anxiety a voice and letting it control you is something we all have to conquer in our own way.
Make sure to have a playlist which you can sing along to which distracts you. Having music on helps me think deeply and distracts me from panicking. Find which songs soothe your anxiety and compile a playlist. You could even title it “Anxiety Relief” or something like that so you can quickly find it on your device.
The most important thing is to have a support system of friends or/and family members who understand and want to help you. It can be hard for people to understand anxiety if they have not experienced it, or they have experienced a different type of anxiety. I always find it reassuring to be able to call someone I trust to talk to when I’m anxious. Having these people helps with my recovery and through the bad times.
If you don’t have someone who you can call, maybe try joining a local support group or finding friends on a Facebook page. I’ll put some links below to some Facebook groups:
4. Listen to other stories
Listening to other peoples’ stories and their experience with anxiety helps to know you aren’t alone. And sometimes you can even gain a few tips. Watching YouTube videos can be a good way to do this or reading blogs. I will probably blog my own story in the not too distant future. I’ll also put some anxiety related videos below for you to watch:
5. You are your home
Ever since I began having anxiety and panic attacks, my family have always told me that wherever I am, I’m my own safety net, my own home and I can get through anything. If you have a safe place, like I do (my bed), then you need to try to realise that you are your own safe place and wherever you go, you are strong enough to get through it. It may seem impossible, but you will learn that you are your own safety net and that you carry your home in your heart. It can be scary to realise you’re the only person who can help you, but once you know how strong you are, you will be able to conquer the world.
6. Health and well-being
I know a lot of people who do meditation to help with anxiety – personally I don’t have the patience – but it’s incredibly good for your well-being.
Getting a therapist or a counselor or talking to a doctor is a good idea – don’t worry if they act like you’re crazy – don’t give up till they help you. Talking through how you feel and receiving tips is what to expect from a counselor or therapist. But discuss that more with your doctor.
Rescue Remedy is excellent too. I use Rescue Remedy which helps to calm my nerves. You can get it here:
Eating healthy and drinking less caffeine can also help to boost your mood.
I will put links to some websites which have more anxiety information down below:
Overall, that is my list of what is hopefully helpful anxiety relief advice. I will be talking more about this subject in future blogs but for now I thought giving some tips would be a good start.
Remember that this is an account of my personal experience and if you have different ways of coping, please comment! Also, always feel free to message me if you ever need someone to talk to.
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