I found this post today and thought that I should republish it with an update…
I have anxiety. I have severe panic attacks that make physically ill. Why? Usually no reason other than the inability to slow down the millions of thoughts and fears swarming my already crowded mind. Is this a new thing? Nope, I now realize its been an issue for years, many years. Does this make me a complete nutcase who lacks the ability to live a normal life? Nope, it just means I need to do things a bit differently so I can live a HAPPIER life. See my realization and diagnosis (by a professional) is VERY recent. All this time I wrote off my feelings as stemming from being overworked, taking on too much, or just thinking it was a really bad personality trait. Its a scary and enlightening moment you realize you need help. You get to a point where you feel like no one understands, you don’t even understand. And it doesn’t seem to pass, but sits there hanging on. You finally get to the point you ask for help, you open up to those close to you, and you find out your more normal than you thought. Depression and Anxiety are not as rare as you may think. The statistics state that around one in four adults suffers from some kind of mental illness. Many of these people are talented, very successful, and outwardly living a fabulous life. But the battle within is an obstacle they traverse each and every day. Now these stats are based on the people who have been diagnosed, I would bet the numbers would be EVEN HIGHER if you counted those who were not officially diagnosed but attempt to deal with it on their own, are too embarrassed to seek out help, or just accept the feelings they have as normal.
- Taking my medication regularly.
- Talking about my stress or writing about it. Yes! Blogging can help release stress!
- Learning to accept imperfection and embrace myself.
- Making time for ME. Reading, going out with friends, relaxing.
- Prayer. It really does work. We were not meant to carry our burdens on our own shoulders.
- Exercise. When I get outside and do some physical, I feel so much better.
- Eating well. Not abusing alcohol. Treating my body right.
Over the years, I have discovered that so many women struggle with depression. Even women who look like they have it all together. It is crucial that we support each other, talk about our struggles and be honest with ourselves. I’m happy to say that depression and anxiety no longer have control of my life. I am in control and joy is once again abundant.
*If you are feeling overwhelmed, sad, hopeless or fearful on a regular basis, please seek help from a professional. It doesn’t make you weak. Getting help proves that you are strong and brave. It will also help make your life happy again. You deserve to be happy and you are not alone.