4 Life-Changing Ways For You To Own Your Anxiety
In 2020, everyone should be taking accountability for their mental health. Because the mind can easily become the most fragile part of a person’s being. Each and every day we face hardships, whether big or small. As well as a variety of circumstances that can range from simply unfortunate to absolutely terrifying. These encounters slowly but surely beat our minds into submission to a number of ailments. And the most common amongst our generation happen to be anxiety and depression. While you should keep in mind that I am no licensed professional, here are a list of 4 life-changing ways for you to own your anxiety and take back control of your mind.
1. Know the Signs and Symptoms
Do you find it hard to get out of bed in the morning, even though you got a full night’s worth of rest?
Would you say you often find yourself “eating your feelings”, or not eating much at all due to an out-of-whack appetite?
And can you say that the things that once mattered to you like going to class, or practice, or hanging out with friends no longer hold priority?
Last but not least, do you find yourself easily in distress (easily meaning when nothing is really going on) multiple times a week or even a day?
If the answer is more than one of these questions, something is most definitely off and acknowledging that fact is key to getting things back to the way they should be.
2. Acknowledge the Issue
When I notice a change in my mood (i.e. episodes of stress, sadness, anger, etc.), I immediately attempt to figure out what triggered such change. For example, I tend to overwhelm myself so much to the point of actual panic. And almost if not all of these panic attacks began as a simple worry. Worry of whether or not I’ll complete all my assignments or tasks in time, or if I’m at work — which used to happen a lot — I’d see a huge line of customers form and I would run to the bathroom to bawl my eyes out while my mom would walk me through how to properly breathe on the phone.
I’ve gotten a lot better; I average one, maybe two panic attacks every three months versus one, maybe two a week, and I’ve gotten this far by acknowledging my worry the second it’s triggered. I like to retrace my thoughts, so if all of a sudden I feel like my back is against the wall, I have to think about what’s in front of me or what is essentially keeping me “cornered”. If it’s a number of upcoming assignments, I have to tell myself that if I make a to-do list in order of due dates, I’ll get it all done just fine — and then that worry doesn’t have the ability to grow into a panic.
I find that this same technique works in preventing depressive episodes. I myself, was diagnosed with chronic depression at a pretty young age. And my parents decided against medication, leaving me to explore other means of coping.
3. Stay Away from Alcohol and Recreational Drug Use
The last thing you want to do when you are feeling down or stressed is get drunk or high, as it most likely will become your main method of coping. This I know from personal experience. Being in college and away from parental supervision, makes it that much easier to get into things you necessarily shouldn’t and that for me was marijuana. I spent half of my first year in college stoned out of my mind. High was my sober and it was hitting a joint for the first time on a really bad day that got me to that point. And though I have nothing against drinking or smoking socially given the right time and place, doing so in a vulnerable state can and definitely will lead to dependency and/or addiction.
I know too many old friends and family members who have taken up smoking daily and as a result have dropped out of school or quit their jobs. This happens due to there being not much desire to do anything other than get high. Luckily, I got a handle on things before I myself got to that place. And it was going back to therapy helped with that.
4. Talk to Someone
Seriously, even if you think things aren’t “bad enough” for you to consider counseling, if you have the means — which today is highly possible due to the variety of options offered through insurance providers or for those of you without insurance, Community Mental Health Centers. If you are a student, you should find out what kinds of mental health services your college or university provides, as most of the time if they do, it will be free.
If you aren’t necessarily looking for on-going treatment and just need someone to talk to during really difficult times, there is always the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (1–800–273–8255) and Crisis Text Line (text TALK to 741741).
Truth of the matter is my friend, it’s all too easy today to pick a permanent solution and often times tragic solution for a temporary — or at least fixable — problem. So is highly imperative that you make a habit of acknowledging your feelings and emotions in order for you to get a handle on them before it gets to the point of you making an irreversible decision. If you are someone who is struggling mentally and emotionally in any way, I hope the suggestions above prove worthy of giving a try. If they work, please come back to let me know. And if you have some suggestions of your own that you’d like to share, I encourage you do to so in the comments below as well!
Originally published at https://ageofaiysha.com on February 14, 2020.