Alright so, Anxiety is something that plagued my life for years. I’ve had anxious thoughts and feelings from as long as I can remember. Even as a child, I used to get this feeling that something bad was going to happen.
I remember always feeling this snap decision in my head. Something in there was saying ‘No’. But, as hard as I tried to fight against it, it would always win. I couldn’t do something because of this ‘No”…
In my teens, I missed a lot of schooling and GSCE coursework. I was constantly at war with my mum, trying to get her to understand but also trying to figure it out myself. Why did I have some horrible voice that wouldn’t let me do the things everyone else could do?
What was wrong with me?
It’s not just the ‘No’ either. I also used to have this panicked feeling whenever I would go out without a reason for being out. A good example would be to go shopping without having an exact outfit or product to buy. I could easily get to the shop, I could even go in, but the general feeling of looking for something without knowing if I would find it or not, would really push my levels up.
I like to have a plan, a goal, a reason for doing something.
If I were with other people, it was fine. There would be no fear or worry or stress. Going out alone though, total panic and anxiety. So I started practicing leaving my house for no reason. I would wear my big red oversized comfort jumper (even in summer) and just walk somewhere.
I remember I once walked all the way into Halesowen from my Dad’s house (thirty minutes away), then forced myself to go into New Look to just look at clothes. Clutching my trusty iPod for moral support I spent the ENTIRE time feeling like people were talking about me, but I still did it.
That spurred a lot more outings alone (with my iPod). I felt a lot less anxious if I couldn’t hear other people. Sometimes, I would start walking and then decide to visit friends, other times I would just loop back home. The most important thing for me was getting out the house, alone.
So, why am I telling you this?
Well, a few months ago I went to London on my own. I mean, I met up with Jess and Emilina. But, I was on my own for a good four hours. Even though its been years, sometimes these thoughts and feelings still creep in.
I was walking around trying to find a nice place to sit and write some blog posts, when my anxiety kicked in.
Immediately, I grabbed my headphones and put them in. Even without listening to music, knowing that to anyone else it looks like I am, gives me some calmness. Then, I went and found somewhere I felt safe. From there, I was able to collect myself, make a plan and get myself back to a level place.
Just because you declare something dead and gone (anxiety and depression for me) doesn’t mean it wont try to disrupt your life. The most important thing to do is to stay positive and show it where to go!
If you suffer with the same type of anxiety that I have, then here are some of the things I did and still do to keep it under control.
- Carry Headphones and wear them (Even if you’re not listening to anything)
- Find somewhere you feel comfortable and calm yourself down (Coffee shops/Bathrooms/Parks etc)
- Think of something you need to do when you get home (This will take your mind off your anxious thoughts)
- Call a friend/family member and ask if they can talk to you for ten minutes.
- Make a mini plan of three things you want to do in that moment, write them down and act them out. (Buy some water, Pick some flowers, Find some new quotes online, Smile at a stranger, Try some new make up etc)
If you have a different type of anxiety, then please read this post https://www.vickiamaya.com/coping-with-anxiety/
If you’re ever struggling, please feel free to reach out to me. I’m always here for you