This blog is quite a bit different from what I usually post, but it is something that is very important to me. I have noticed that I’m definitely not alone in the ways I’ve felt. This blog is dedicated to other people who know where I’m coming from and I hope at least one of these methods can resonate with you.
For some unfortunate and unclear reason, anxiety has been a popular topic of discussion in recent years. I’m not sure if this is due to the some of the advancements in our society (the way we interact with technology) or the fact that more people are comfortable recognizing/admitting they are not 100% mentally healthy. I hope it’s the ladder, because it is about time the mental health issue becomes something that we can all accept, understand and discuss.
I usually only open up about these type of issues with individuals that I feel a very strong connection with. Because I have noticed that many people suffer from anxiety, I am willing to share my experiences and advice on this topic. A little over a year ago I was diagnosed with Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD). I once felt like I couldn’t come forward with my anxiety and I felt alone, like I was going crazy…like there was no way for me to fix it. I’m here to inform you that you are not crazy and you CAN work through it. Now I’m not sure if the methods that work for me, work for you. Everyone is different. Each person experiences anxiety in a unique way, therefore there are several different ways for us to cope with it. I can only hope that one of my ways to combat anxiety speaks to you.
If you’re a student, I highly suggest getting Spotify Premium (it comes with Hulu too) for $5 a month. I’m not sure if these podcasts are on Google Play or Apple Music because I only have Spotify. I have two favorites that always help me through anxious days. One is called Affirmation Pod and the other is Mini Meditations. Isolating myself in a calm, comfortable environment and listening to one of these episodes can help me reset my thoughts. It might not be the exact same, but if you can’t get Spotify, there’s always YouTube!
This is another great way to clear your mind. You can really focus on deep breathing and slowly working the stress and tension from anxiety out of your muscles. Try to be conscious of where you hold tension. Relax all of your muscles. You might notice yourself clenching your jaw or tightening your throat. Acknowledge this and then release the tension. Listening to soft music can also improve this experience.
Sometimes its much easier for us to write down our feelings than say them out loud to another person. It can be really gratifying to open up a notebook or journal to blank page, grab your favorite pen and let your mind do the writing. Write down exactly how you feel. Then, write down what you think might be causing you to feel this way. Finally, next to each item, write down an idea on how to work through this feeling or to avoid what causes it.
Even if you’re not the greatest artist in the world, I believe that getting in touch with your creative side can be very therapeutic. I personally like using vibrant colors that represent my feelings at that time to draw or paint. It doesn’t have to be anything special, just do whatever feels good.
Attitude of Gratitude
Each night before you go to bed, think of all the things you are grateful for. It can also help to write these down. Think about why you’re grateful for these things and how they make your life better. Remind yourself that there is so much to be happy about and that you’re doing just fine. You can also replace negative thoughts with positive thoughts throughout the day when you feel yourself creeping back into a negative mind space.
Create an atmosphere that is comfortable and positive. For me, this includes diffusing essential oils, dimming the lights, lighting a candle or two and having a clean/tidy space.
Integrating each of these small changes into my everyday life have helped me work through my anxiety tremendously. I wish the same for you. It will be okay 🙂
Love & Light!