If you’ve read through my about section and my first post then you will know that I suffer with an anxiety and panic disorder, along with depression. Suffering with both of these can sometimes be hellish, a never ending circle of emotions and thoughts. Most people do not realise that these mental health issues make everyday tasks, such as making it out of bed or even doing the laundry a huge accomplishment for me. These things are often not accepted by society as much of a big deal, people have no issues with walking to the corner shop for milk or ordering food over the phone so what is so hard about it? The short answer? Fear, when you have anxiety you fear almost everything, which is very tiring and very draining and when the depression sets in you wonder ‘why even bother?’ which saps any motivation you have out of you. Every day tasks which are your “molehills” are in fact our “mountains” So, here is a list of my 10 daily wins for people suffering with anxiety.
1. Getting through a day at work without having to run off to the toilet for a respite/breather/cry.
If you suffer with anxiety then it is very likely that you will have had to take a little break from your work day to disappear to the bathroom for a quick break from the whirlwind of work. Rather than get worked up and over anxious I prefer a five minuet retreat to the nice quiet and calming restroom where I work. However, it feels pretty damn good when you manage to leave at the end of the day without having to run off in search of a safe space!
2. Getting out of the house when you didn’t have to.
When you suffer with anxiety it can be so easy to just keep yourself locked up so that you are stuck inside with your own thoughts. This can be really damaging and induce a state of anxiety that it’s hard to come back from, agrapobia is somewhat connected with some forms of anxiety so getting yourself out of the front door is a huge achievement.
3. Answering a phone call.
Most of us hate phone calls, and in this world of online messaging it is usually easy to avoid them. However, sometimes people/professionals need to actually speak to us (unfortunately) and I always feel really proud of myself when I manage to answer a phone call.
4. Taking the initiative.
Making plans with friends or family is a big deal for people with anxiety, myself on the other hand I have no issue making plans but immediately panic about them after everything had been set. But taking charge and arranging to do something with someone is a nice step.
5. Walking through a busy street or shop.
Weekends are the days where I tend to venture outside of my little village and into the town or city center. The city is usually totally packed! So walking through it isn’t an appealing idea 90% of the time. Managing to get through all those people is a much bigger achievement than I give myself credit for. Especially if I manage to do it without one panicking thought.
6. Making it to the end of the day without having a panic attack.
Panic attacks are absolutely nothing to be ashamed of. Everyone in the world either has or will get panicked over something or other, it just so happens that people with anxiety can get them over the “smallest thing” They are an absolutely horrible experience to go through and I go through periods of having multiple panic attacks in a short period of time. When you know that you have a big and important day ahead of you it can be such a relief to reach the end of it without one.
7. Continuing with your day even if you do have a panic attack.
As I said, panic attacks are nothing to be ashamed of and they happen to even to people who do not clinically suffer from anxiety or panic disorders. Even if you do end up having a panic attack, the ability to be able to calm yourself down and pick yourself up again is a huge deal and you should be extremely proud of yourself when you carry on with your day.
8. Managing to fall asleep and having a night uniterrupted. Oh and sleep without having flashbacks or nightmares.
Personally, falling asleep isn’t a huge problem for me. Staying asleep is however, I wake a few times each night and normally am awake pretty damn early. Anxious thoughts and memories of pretty bad times in my life are usually the culprit. It seems my brains favourite pass time at night is lying awake for hours with my anxiety in overdrive as I overthink everything that I should be trying to forget. Waking up well rested is amazing and makes me so thankful and proud that I was able to stay in control of my thoughts
9. Remembering to eat.
Ever been so busy that you’ve skipped a meal? Well anxiety makes you feel sick, like all the time, anxiety means your brain is too busy to recognise that it needs food. Anxiety controls your appetite which means that you hardly have any energy. I find myself bingig on the occasions where I am relaxed just to keep myself going sometimes. But being aware, making sure you remeber to eat even if you do feel sick, no matter how small is a good and healthy thing. Physically and mentally.
10. Being able to say no.
I suffer with this more than most other things I think, I can’t say no. Part of my anxiety is the fear of people leaving me alone, I honestly believe that saying no will drive people away. Make them dissapointed. I find it very difficult to not just go along with what someone wants to make them smile. I know that deep down I don’t want to do the thing, and that I would much rather do things my own way, however actually verbalising this makes me feel terrified that the person will no longer like me or be angry that I don’t want to do what they want me to. At 26 I’m fully aware that this means some friends take advantage of my nature, and I’m fully aware that when I do say no there are some people who stop talking to me until they want something again. It is important that you look after and stand up for yourself, that you realise who has a toxic effect in you. So every time that you manage to say no – be proud of yourself, I sure as hell learning to be. Oh, and if I say no to you it doesn’t mean I don’t want to be around you. It means my anxiety is kicking my arse and I genuinely can’t. Mmmmkay?
Nice list? Anything you think should be added? Leave a comment t and let me know and until my next post, see you and l online! Charlotte x