I am very open about the fact that I deal with anxiety (& depression which is brought on by my anxiety), for me it is better to talk about it then hide it or keep it a secret.
I go though cycles with my anxiety, for the most part I know how to control it and keep it at bay. However, every so often I have a bout that gets the best of me! When this happens it takes some time for me to get it back under control but I always seem to. It just so happened that this spring I had one of those bouts. If you have been reading my blog for a while you probably recall that talked about it, if you are new to the blog you can read about it here.
I can happily say that I am finally owning my anxiety!!! And I can honestly say I am owning it two ways (per dictionary.com):
verb (used with object)
1) to acknowledge or admit. Example: I own that I have anxiety and it has impacts on my day to day life and no mater how much I try to pretend it doesn’t, it does!
2) to totally defeat, gain control over, or dominate. Example: I have owned my anxiety! I have limited the impact it has on my day to day life!
It has been so nice to have it back under control! It has taken a lot to get there this time, I had to go back to counseling. I have been to counseling once before for my anxiety and it was extremely helpful! Which is why I started going again at the end of May and it has been a huge help. For me, it is nice to have someone who I can talk to about how I am feeling and not have them tell me – it will get better soon, I am over reacting, just relax.
The first time I went to counseling I learned a lot of great ways to keep my anxiety under control. However, this time no matter how much I tried these things didn’t work. But typically they do, so I thought I would share what works for me:
- Get enough sleep – for me this is probably the most important one there is. If I don’t get enough sleep it is almost a guarantee my anxiety will be worse than normal.
- Limit alcohol and caffeine – these can actually trigger anxiety attacks.
- Exercise daily – this has been a major reason I have been able to keep my anxiety under control. I call it my outlet!
- Accept that you cannot control everything – As much as I wish I could, I can’t! I often catch myself trying to figure out how to control everything, when this happen I make myself take a step back and evaluate the situation. Then a I create a game plan around what I can and can’t control.
- Do your best – You can’t be perfect so just try for you best. This is always very hard for me, I am a perfectionist and I have a hard time controlling it. However, I know that I am a perfectionist so it helps because I can catch myself in the act and try to stop myself before I get too far!
- Humor – Welcome it! If you can laugh about it, it makes it so much easier!!!!!!!
- Maintain a positive attitude – This can be hard but it will make a difference if you can stay positive!
- Learn what triggers your anxiety – The first time I went to counseling I learned what my triggers are and I try to limit them or go into the situation acknowledging that it is a trigger and I need to stay aware.
- Talk to someone – This is a must for me or my anxiety is much worse. Talking to someone doesn’t mean therapy (but it can and there is nothing wrong with that!), it can me talking to a partner, a friend, a parent, etc.
I don’t let my anxiety define me and I try really hard to not let it control me! Having anxiety is just part of who I am and it makes me, me!