Okay, so I’ve never written about this or publicised it before but I thought it might be a good post to link in with this project.
As of a few years ago, I found out what holds me back all the time, why I get so anxious about being in public places and why I cannot stand to be around someone who even feels ill, let alone are actually ill – emetophobia, the fear of sick.
This contributes a great deal to my anxiety levels as well. It got so bad at one point, that I could barely leave the house to walk the dog. I couldn’t go out to meals, to see friends, or travel, without getting incredibly panicked about it.
It took until my mum suggested therapy for me to start doing something about it, to help myself get better. From mid-July 2013 until October 2013 I saw a therapist once a week. She talked through my problems, narrowing them down so she could start suggesting the appropriate techniques for me to help myself with. It helped, a lot.
It seems like a silly thing to have a fear over, to stop your life for, but (and I’ve read other peoples opinions on this too) you literally cannot control what you fear. That person doesn’t want to feel that way; they beat themselves up over the fact that they don’t feel normal – yet other people do not seem to understand. They disregard any mental health issues as something little, as if it isn’t real because it isn’t happening to them as well.
I think we need to appreciate and understand what another individual is going through. No one person feels the same things, goes through the same issues. We are all different.
I’m not saying you can cure your anxiety completely, but there are a couple of things you can do to help improve it.
1) Talk to someone – a therapist (I know it’s expensive and a lot of people can’t afford this; I spent the remainder of my student loan on mine as I didn’t go out a great deal), a friend, a parent, anyone. It will make you feel a tonne better and with them knowing everything they can fully support you.
2) Breathe – taking deep breaths in an anxiety-fueled situation can calm you down dramatically.
3) If you have a specific fear/anxiety, read a self-help book – I can’t recommend Thrive enough. Rob Kelly really nails some useful techniques for a variety of problems. The D.R.E.A.M technique especially helped me – and still does.
4) Push yourself, but in moderation – for me it was getting out of the house at least once a day. I felt this would help me to get used to it, to tell myself there was nothing to worry about. Don’t overdo it though, give yourself a break and reward yourself for your efforts.
5) Reward yourself – when you’ve achieved something you set out to do, no matter how insignificant it may seem to someone else, reward yourself for doing it. Be proud that you have set out to do what you intended.
I’m not saying these will all work for everyone. I mean, even though I have been to therapy it didn’t ‘cure me’. I’m struggling right now again with my anxiety and phobia because I’m stressing about my final year of university. But I know if I keep pushing myself, use what I have learnt, that I will get better again. Everyone has their good moments and their bad ones, you can’t be just one of them forever.
I hope this post can help you or someone you know that is suffering. Don’t give up.
*All images are from google/pininterest