How to live with anxiety and how to heal from it
Everyone’s experienced some form of anxiety at one point in their lives. You’ve probably experienced butterflies in your stomach or tightness in your chest. Anxiety’s that feeling you get right before a presentation at work, a big exam, or even a hot date. These are all normal situations that deserve a small amount of anxiety. Despite all of this, it’s still hard for people to really understand what it’s like to have an anxiety throughout your life.
Common symptoms that people experience when having anxiety are:
• Feelings of panic, fear, and uneasiness
• Problems sleeping
• Cold or sweaty hands and/or feet
• Shortness of breath
• Heart palpitations
• An inability to be still and calm
• Dry mouth
• Numbness or tingling in the hands or feet
• Muscle tension
Since I can remember I always had anxiety more or less. I was very shy and sensitive as a kid, growing up many different triggers have effected my anxiety.
Triggers what can effect your anxiety can be any kind of conflict, insecurities, fear of failing, being upset, shock, tragic life changes, fears, loss of loved ones etc.
In the cases of anxiety I have a terrible habit of starting layering things and analyzing every single detail about me and whats happening around me. It can happen that I start becoming negative, putting myself into panic. Often it even feels like everything is crashing down and its something what is out of my control. Thoughts in my head are running, I might start crying uncontrollably for no reason. But there is something I have learned in past years when I have had to deal with it more intensively than usual, that it is very important for me to let those emotions out. To let everything what have piled up in me to come out and let go. This makes the process of healing a lot easier.
Working it through is so important. When you are younger and you are still trying to figure it out, it all can feel like its a lot to handle. With time your learn technics how to balance those struggles. Every one of us is completely different individual, our stories, experiences and feelings are completely different and that also means different things work for different people. For me personally meditation, yoga, going for a walk or even staying in bed all day can make magic of having a peaceful mind or talking with people who love and care about me. Support system is a major key. Anxiety is something what no-one should deal alone. Talking about your feelings, thoughts and experience is such big and supportive part of therapy. Talk with anyone you feel comfortable with, you can trust and you know they have your best interest at heart. Don’t be shy about it and don’t fear judgement. Go it through, cry it out, sleep on it and the next day talk with someone who will really listen. As very often in the moment the emotions are so high, your head all over the place… its important to take you time to calm down before reaching out for support.
Often someone will say something what triggers you and they don’t know it. But when living with anxiety we are often ashamed about it, and we don’t want to talk about it with everyone, as those are very personal issues to go through. People close to you should be aware of what you going through and with time they will learn to support you with that.
For a long time I dealt with it alone as I felt no-one would understand me or I didn’t know how to explain how I felt during my anxiety attacks. I’ve been living alone since a very young age so I always felt like I had to learn how to deal with life independently. But once getting older I realized that with things like anxiety what can come unexpectedly, what is often completly out of my control, we don’t have to deal with it alone and it is important to share what you are going though with the closest people in your life. I am so blessed for my family and my mom who’s been always here for me to talk when I need her.
With anxiety we tend to overreact on things what are not worth it, we might go through tornado of feelings inside and never show the struggle to anyone… and you need to get to the point when you learn to accept it. Learn to understand to not blame yourself, stop thinking that you are different, this is just something you need to go through emotionally and then forgive yourself and let it go. Finding peace with it isn’t easy but it comes with time. You need to stay patient and let yourself feel all of it. It can be very difficult in time, but most important is to learn to cope with it and find out what works the best for you. Stop yourself living in fear of judgement.
Most of the time anxiety is out of our control, but you have to learn to focus on what is in your control, what you can change and how you can make yourself feel better during those times. Do the best you can to make those changes, to improve yourself and focus on being the best version of yourself. Let go of the feelings and situations you can’t change.
Focus on all positive aspects of life. Something you can create, control and put your energy into. Focus on something what is all you, something what brings you life and happiness. People with anxiety are more sensitive, more emotional, we feel everything a lot deeper. So it is important to make sure your surroundings are positive, and try to keep away from any situations what might bring you the opposite. Anxiety and difficulties might want to tear you down, but learning to cope with it you will find your ways how to get up and get back on track. Don’t give up on yourself. Don’t let those struggles make you weak. This is very personal, everyone of us has a different individual anxiety stories, but don’t let it take over your life. Just keep working on yourself, on your peace, on your balance. You will have tougher days and brighter days, but make sure to keep you head up and keep going.
But if you can adapt your mindset to one that is more spiritual and gets in touch with your beliefs better, then there are absolutely several benefits to spiritual growth. These include:
Faith in the Future - Perhaps the greatest problem for those with anxiety is the lack of seeing the future as a positive. Unfortunately this is caused by anxiety – much like being sick, it changes your thought patterns to make you feel like anxiety is still to come. But spirituality is about having faith in the world around you, and that faith can reduce some of the negativity you may feel for your future.
Healthy Living - Spirituality also tends to be a form of healthier living. Those that are more spiritual often find that they are more prone to taking care of themselves, maintaining healthier habits, spending time with other people, and so on. Healthy living is very important for controlling anxiety, and something that those with anxiety often struggle to do.
Healthy Distraction - The activities you do for spiritual growth also provide a very healthy distraction for overcoming anxiety. Actively attacking your stress isn’t always the most successful strategy. Sometimes the brain heals better when you simply don’t have time to pay attention to anxiety. Spiritual activities tend to be fairly consuming, which means that your mind is distracted from your worries and focused on something positive.
When you feel that anxiety is something what makes you go through difficulties from time to time remember this…
• Anxiety does not define a person
• The effects of anxiety can be physical.-it’s not just something that just affects your mind. Anxious feelings can manifest physically—sometimes severely. For example, someone suffering from anxiety may get uncontrollable panic attacks, headaches, dizziness, and an irregular heartbeat.
• Just because a fear is irrational, doesn’t mean it’s not real- Just because there is technically ‘no need’ to stress about a certain thing, that doesn’t make the fear any less real. There’s nothing more frustrating than being in the midst of a crippling panic, and someone explaining to you how very ludicrous your fears are. Shockingly, this tidbit of information does not help at all; if anything, it hinders.
• Panic attacks are completely overwhelming- Of course, everyone experiences these episodes in different ways, but there are some symptoms that every sufferer will recognize all too clearly. The surge of awful dread and fear comes over you out of nowhere. Suddenly, you’re completely gripped by the sense that all is not well; something truly terrible is about to happen. You can barely breathe, you feel hot, your heart rate quickens, and you want to leave the place that you are. It physically hurts and you feel you have no control. And this barely scratches the surface of what it feels like to have anxiety.
• It’s not just a state of mind- The greatest and most problematic misconception about anxiety is that it’s merely a state of mind; something that the sufferer can somehow control if they really wanted to. That idea is damaging simply because it places the blame of the anxiety on the shoulders of the sufferer. Instead, anxiety is something that you can learn to manage, but never fully control on your own.
Everyone’s different and it’s often a combination of factors that can contribute to developing an anxiety condition. It’s important to remember that you can’t always identify the cause of anxiety or change difficult circumstances. The most important thing is to recognise the signs and symptoms and seek advice and support.