I’ve said it before; and i’ll say it again.. Don’t treat yourself worse than you would treat a best friend.
Long time no blog post right? Welcome back to my little corner of the internet.
Between work, illness, change (we all know I don’t like change) and just being ridiculously busy – It’s time for some “ME” time and some time to focus on myself and things i like doing – which is my blog.
Sometimes when people ask me what i’m doing today, on my day off and I reply “nothing” it doesn’t mean i’m free. It means i’m having a me day, and i’m doing nothing.
I’ve had a really rocky few months since Christmas with lots of huge changes and theres people i’m close to that have absolutely no idea and half of me likes it that way; the other half? I’m not so sure..
I was sat in hospital on Wednesday having what felt like 5334 tests and thinking “Me a year ago would be sat here with my MacBook blogging. Not sitting here wasting my time scrolling through Instagram”.
As much as I LOVE Instagram I find myself wasting so much time on it watching things that are totally irrelevant that I won’t even remember in 24 hours. Plus it’s only natural to judge yourself when looking on instagram at all the “perfect profiles” which can sometimes make you feel worse than you already do..
Anyway, without getting even more sidetracked..
So!..Lets talk about ANXIETY.
It’s 2019 and it feels as though every mum, dad, brother, sister, auntie, uncle, cousin thats been twice removed, dog, cat and tortoise has been “Diagnosed” with Anxiety.. But how many of them actually have?
Probably a lot.. Lets be honest. Things have changed from 5 years ago to now massively. You judge yourself every chance you get, more people are stressing at School, Uni and Work and Basically what is screwing us up the most is the picture in our head of how life is supposed to be.
Anxiety isn’t feeling a little nervous about something, or being a little worried.. Anxiety is simply.. Horrible.
Simply is definitely the wrong word to use here, as Anxiety is anything but simple..
When I was diagnosed with anxiety I laughed at my doctor. Me? The person that can stand in front of 2000 people on stage.. Anxious? Not a chance, it’s got to be something else.. Right?
Then the feelings came out more, the lack of sleep, the insomnia, I don’t think many people understand – You can be the most confident person in the world, but anxiety is still very real. Everyone has different ways of dealing with anxiety – I scratch my hand or fiddle with something like a bobble on my wrist or play with my hair.
Anxiety is like a cycle –
- Anxious Mess
- Therapy and Self Care
- Hey! I’m feeling pretty okay actually!
- Wait, I’m feeling too good.. This is suspicious..
- Something terrible is going to happen.. Any. Minute. NOW..
- …And then we’re back to “Anxious Mess” at number one.
Anxiety comes in so many different forms. Do you know if your closest friends and people you see daily have anxiety? It’s not just being a little nervous about something, it could be:
- Cancelling plans at the last minute.
- Believing they are a burden to everyone
- Eating all the time or not at all
- Mood swings that could last hours, or even days
- Being emotionally distant
- Constantly needing reassurance that they are still loved or haven’t “messed anything up”
- Isolating themselves to protect others.
- Frequent crying or melt downs
- Having an outburst over something others may consider to be “small”.
How can you recognise Anxiety in yourself? This can be really difficult but a few signs are:
- Over thinking
- stomach issues
- panic attacks
- Needing reassurance
- Trouble breathing
- Rapid heartbeat
- Memory Issues
But more common signs of Anxiety could be –
- Feeling nervous, restless or tense
- Having a sense of danger or panic
- Having an increased heart rate
- Breathing rapidly (hyperventilation)
- Feeling weak or tired
- Trouble concentrating or thinking about anything other than the present worry.
- Having trouble sleeping
- Having difficulty controlling worry
- Having the urge to avoid things that trigger anxiety.
Plus did you know Several types of anxiety disorders exist? It isn’t that if you have anxiety, you’re the exact same as the girl down the street with it too. Theres so many different types..:
- Anxiety disorder due to a medical condition
- Generalized anxiety disorder
- Panic disorder
- Selective mutism
- Separation anxiety disorder
- Social anxiety disorder (social phobia)
- Specific phobias
- Substance-induced anxiety disorder
- Other specified anxiety disorder and unspecified anxiety disorder
Enough with the bullet points.. RIGHT?! Well, Nearly!
After Christmas and during Easter I was at my absolutely worst. Confused and pretty much lost, with a constant fear of getting replaced. I lost friends including one of my best friends and i’m pretty sure they have no idea. I guess thats life though isn’t it? You grow apart from people, it’s normal – but how normal is normal?
I hadn’t slept in 5 days, only got up for work and spent the rest of my time in bed or out keeping myself busy. After getting to 7 days with 4 hours sleep I went back to the doctor about other health problems (again coming in a new post) and he re-diagnosed me with severe anxiety. Nothing had changed, not really? I’d dropped some people that were making no effort with me, realised other people weren’t worth my time and then realised that this was it – How could I spend time with people and like people if I didn’t even Like myself?
So last week, I threw myself into work, went for walks, put my phone down more, did things I wanted to do and it helped massively. I didn’t want any other medication that would make me feel like a zombie – everyone has ways of dealing with stuff and this wasn’t mine.
- Exercise. Exercise is one of the most important things you can do to combat stress.
- Get a diary.
- Make a routine.
- Consider Supplements.
- Light a Candle.
- Reduce Your Caffeine Intake.
- Write It Down.
- Chew Gum.
- Spend Time With Friends and Family.
- Learn a New Hobby or Class.
- Learn to avoid procrastination.
- And what I think is most important, personally:
Learn to Say “NO!”
- Not all stressors are within your control, but some are.
- Take control over the parts of your life that you can change and are causing you stress or pain.
- One way to do this may be to say “no” more often.
- This is especially true if you find yourself taking on more than you can handle, as juggling too many responsibilities can leave you feeling overwhelmed.
- Being selective about what you take on and reduce your stress levels.
Heres a few of my favourite Instagram profiles when i’m having an off day –
@Wonderful_u – Meg is amazing, she does daily stories on her instagram and involves her two puppies Rue and Murphie. She is always really positive and an amazing person to follow. She’s really down to earth and her instagram proves she’s a normal person not your usual Instagrammer that pretends to lead their perfect life too fool everyone. Meg is genuine and lovely.
@CGBlackburn – Chloe’s a make-up artist, I know right? Just hear me out – She’s not your usual instagram makeup artist – She’s amazing! Chloe runs events to help raise awareness for mental health. She’s constantly on instagram regardless of having a full time job as a MUA and is always so positive – plus she’s obsessed with Harry Potter… So thats always an extra winner right? She’s an amazing and down to earth person to follow.
@BeckyExcell – Becky is a gluten free food blogger that creates recipes and loves to travel. There’s been a few times i’ve been too nervous to travel or even eat – and i’ve flicked through her instagram and it’s really helped!
@Alyserurianidesign – Someone else had posted Alyse’s designs from their own account so i’ve only just started to follow her personally pretty recently. She does drawings and illustrations for mental health awareness and her designs are amazing. Check her out!
These 4 won’t disappoint!
We’re coming to the end of the post now – so i’ll finally shut up – but honestly, If you’re feeling anxious go see a doctor, I learnt the hard way – This doesn’t make you weak this makes you stronger. And Sometimes, self-care is giving yourself permission to have a bad day.
And if the price is your health? Don’t do it. I learnt this the hard way too.
“Never give up on someone with a mental illness. When “I” Is replaced by “WE” Illness becomes Wellness. – Shannon L. Alder.
Here’s a question – have you checked in with your loved ones lately?