Personally, I often have anxiety. I used to have panic attacks so severe, it felt as if I was having a heart attack. I have talked in detail with family members that have this condition too, and I wonder if anxiety/panic attacks are hereditary. My anxiety usually shows up in social situations. Most of life, I have always been a shy, quiet introvert. At times, it’s hard for me to feel comfortable around strangers.
So you can imagine what a date may look like with me. Awkward silence until I feel at ease. However for me, anxiety is at its worse with people that I have unresolved conflict with, or if I am put on the spot.
Over the years I’ve learned several techniques that can decrease anxiety. Counting backward from 100 eases me and allows me to refocus my energy. This next, solution may sound odd but I talk myself down, in my head of course and tell myself that I’m ok and this too shall pass. But I find prayer to be most helpful and definitive as my faith becomes stronger. I’ve also heard that salt lamps help with anxiety too.
These are great ways to deal with anxiety but sometimes anxiety is too high for them to work. Never feel bad if you are prescribed medication. I’ve taken Clonidine and Xanax, for example, because I needed it at the time. There is a stigma concerning mental health and medication used to treat it. Don’t give in to it. As long as the medication is taken as prescribed and not abused, it can be useful in controlling the symptoms. Life is too short to suffer from anxiety allowing that stigma to keep you from climbing out of the darkness.
Sometimes I go for years without a panic attack and them BOOM my chest is caving in! The stress of everyday life can kill you, literally! As I look back over my life, I realized that taking the time to care for myself and find solutions to my issues instead of quick fixes dissolves many situations that cause anxiety.
Today, I look forward to a brighter future. I used to expect things to go wrong so if they did, I wouldn’t be disappointed. I had been through so much hurt that my defense mechanism was to expect nothing but disappointment. That’s a sad way to live. I had to change my perspective about my value and life in general.
Now that I know my worth and even though every day won’t be a good day, I expect the best out of whatever comes my way. I choose to live in the present, expect greatness in the future, make the best out of each day, spread love and light, and be a better person today than I was yesterday.
For anyone suffering from anxiety or panic attacks, know you are not alone. It can be treated and controlled. I know that my anxiety may always be with me, hidden ready to pop up at random. But I’m so much more confident in my ability to deal with it head-on. It will never again take over my life. Don’t let it continue to take over yours. You have the power to overcome and survive.
The site http://www.mentalhelp.net offers detailed information about anxiety disorders. Comment below if you need to talk. I am always available. And you can contact the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) Helpline 24 hours a day at 1-800-662-HELP (4357).