146- Different Ways to Cope With Anxiety

I have come across many suggestions on how to cope with anxiety, and some have helped and others have not. Here are some of the main coping techniques that many articles suggest:

Accept your anxiety- don’t try to fight it, because it will only make matters worse. I agree with this one, but in my experience, once the ball gets rolling it’s hard to stop. 

Take a deep breath– this can help to slow down your heart rate, and bring you back into the present. 

Focus on what you’re doing– don’t let your anxiety dictate your actions. As long as you can stay present, the anxiety will fade away on its own.

These are just a couple of suggestions that I found on this website where nine coping techniques are detailed: https://psychcentral.com/lib/9-ways-to-reduce-anxiety-right-here-right-now/

As for the personal techniques that I use: 

1. Try to be still– Usually when I stay still, I am able to take a step back and look at the situation more clearly. I usually use questions like “Does this experience really deserve a reaction?” “Do you really want to go through this stress right now?” “What is there really to be afraid of?”

2. Drink some hot tea, or just plain old hot water– This usually helps me when I’m alone, and I start to worry randomly. I mean, I feel better instantly after I’ve had a steaming cup of tea.

3. Get creative– I usually try to write or draw, because I can easily use that same energy to create something great.

4. Get physical– dance around! Do a sport! Do some jumping jacks, anything, just get your body moving.

5. Read a great book/ watch a good movie- I mean, this by far has been the most helpful for me, because it feels great to be somewhere else without having to leave the comfort of my own room.

This is all I have for you guys this morning. Look out for my future posts, because I’ll be addressing anxiety and depression this whole week!

Day 113- Never Stop Believing

Tyler Perry is one of my biggest inspirations. He survived a traumatic childhood, where physical, sexual, and emotional abuse were present, and beyond all expectations, he became a millionaire. In the video above, he speaks to us and tells us to believe. Believe in our dreams, and most importantly, believe in the possibility of them. He says “you have to know it beyond knowing it.” Whether you believe in a god or not, have faith in your journey. Don’t let the opinions of others stop you. Your dreams are valid, regardless of what others tell you.

On my own journey of self-discovery and mental health, there are days where I just want to give up, where I just want to go through the motions, and basically deny myself the opportunity of a better life– the way I see it. But every time this happens, something within just says keep on fighting. I started the video on the part that spoke to me the most, but you may find something else within this video that may speak to you, so I say watch it for yourself and listen for what might get you going again.

Most importantly, reignite that flame and continue to believe.

Day 111- Low Self Esteem and Domestic Violence

Whenever we hear about women who are in an abusive relationship, our first thought is leave. When it comes to a woman with low self-esteem, it’s just not that easy. Women with low self-esteem are more likely to end up with a man that abuses them, because they usually think that they can’t do any better. So, although a woman in this situation may realize that what’s happening to her is wrong, she doesn’t think that she can survive without him. It’s not just the fear of the man that keeps these women around, it is their own view of themselves. Not to mention, these men remind them of how, supposedly, worthless and weak they are every day. Psychological abuse is just as damaging as physical abuse, which is clearly portrayed in films such as “The Color Purple.”

If you are one of these women, you can leave! You can survive without this man, and although you may not think that you’re not worthy, you definitely are! I know that leaving is not so simple, so seek out resources, reach out to people, and form a plan so that you can leave safely.

If you want to read more about this, you can visit: http://womensissues.about.com/od/domesticviolence/a/DomesticViolenceSelfEsteem.htm

 

Day 88

I don’t know what to do guys. I’m exhausted. I would not wish PTSD on my worst enemy. I wake up these days literally holding my breath. I feel like my life is a complete blur sometimes. As you can tell, it’s been a rough couple of days for me, and I’m so close to giving up. I’m not, but I really, really, REALLY feel like it. When is this pain going to subside for good? When am I going to be able to sit in the midst of my peers without being triggered? Oh, I am so tired of being sick and tired! But I am just trying to remember that a full recovery takes time, so today, I am going to be binge watching “The Office” like never before.

Good day, guys!

Day 66

I’m currently home for the holidays, and I’m loving it! No assignments, no tests, no stress! 

There’s nothing like getting a nice hug from my mom every day. The last time she saw me, I was a complete mess. Now I feel like she can see the progress that I have made so far, which makes me feel awesome.

If I don’t post for Christmas, Merry Christmas to you all in advance! Try to cherish all the wonderful people around you, and hope for even more better days to come this holiday season!

Goodnight.

Day 63

Song of the night: Novacane by Frank ocean

First off, the beat is great. You could easily dance to it, or chill in bed, allowing for the sound to consume your mind. The line that sticks out to me the most is: “novacane, numb the pain.”All of us that have ever dealt with mental illness have thought these same words at one point or another. Numb the pain. Sometimes confronting our issues is more painful than the actual pain itself. For me, what has always helped me “numb the pain” is music. I have posted about it several times, but something that I have realized is that I can enjoy music more so now than when I was trying to escape. It honestly feels good to hear a song like this tonight, and know that I’m no longer in a place where I feel the need to be numb. But, reader, if you are still in that place, check this song out. I hope you enjoy it.

Good night.

Day 61

Yesterday, I was having a conversation with a close friend. I was telling her how the trauma I suffered as a child has affected how I view myself and how I interact with men. 

Now that I’m in therapy, I have realized how little I previously thought of myself. I’m just now starting to love myself, truly love myself. I was telling her that sometimes just saying things to yourself is not enough to make you believe it. For so many years I told myself: “you’re beautiful,” “you’re secure,” “you’re at peace,” but no matter how many times i said this, I never believed it. It never changed how I felt.

I have a post on here called “my life mantra,” and I honestly don’t think that I believe in that mantra anymore. I say this, because, like I told my friend: if it’s real, you won’t have to recite it to yourself so many times.

I guess my journey started with these positive affirmations, but it certainly did not end there. I don’t have tips on how to start this process of actually believing in whatever you want about yourself, but never stop learning about yourself. Don’t runaway from the bad memories, trust me, they have added something to your life-whether you think so or not. Never stop exploring what’s inside. Once you stop running, things get easier…in time.

Good night.

Day 57

I can finally breathe. I just finished my last assignment to end off my first semester of grad school! This semester has been all but easy, but I have made it through to the end. Sitting in these feelings of elation, I’m starting to reflect on my journey thus far…

Sometimes we end up in such a state of crisis that we’ll open up to anyone who’ll listen. One instance sticks out to me the most right now: “Maybe it’s all in your head.” These words came from a friend, who in trying to make me feel better about my anxiety, only minimized the seriousness of what I was trying to explain to her, what I was trying to understand for myself..

I tried to convince myself that what I was experiencing probably was all in my head, but that only made me feel worse. It made me blame myself even more for how I was feeling and acting. Four months later, it has become clear to me that anxiety is never “just in your head.” Anxiety has roots somewhere, and sometimes we have to dig deep to find out where.

I have been diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. I have been battling with this disorder for most of my life, but I just never realized it. I never imagined that individuals outside of a military uniform could experience these symptoms to such a degree. I never imagined that I could be the face of PTSD. I will definitely speak more about this in future posts, but tonight I just want to say that anxiety doesn’t just appear out of the blue. There is a cause, whether you are aware of it or not. Do not be afraid to seek out help. Do not be afraid to speak out. The pain isn’t worth your silence.

 

 

Day 52

It’s barely 10pm, and I’m currently taking a stroll around my college campus. It feels like fall. There’s a slightly forceful breeze and the leaves upon the trees are swinging in full effect. I love taking walks like this. It’s so easy for me to think. I don’t have to force myself to relax, because I feel as if I am in my element. 

These days my mood has been all over the place, but overall I’m still progressing very well. As I’m walking past all of the buildings that I used to have class in, I think about all of the times I experience an overwhelming amount of anxiety. Like there’s a cringy memory that goes with each building. It’s okay, though, I can laugh at it now.lol!

But that’s all for tonight folks! Of course continue to make great strides on your mental health journeys, because you will get better in time.