Thursday, March 28

on worrying & anxiety

succulent wall in palo alto

This past weekend, I got stuck in the middle of one of my anxiety-ridden tizzies. Mid-meltdown, my friend stopped me and said, "This situation is so ridiculous, unlikely and irrational that it's almost like you need to find something to be anxious about. If it's not one thing, it's something else." 

I immediately paused in my tracks and realized that she was right. For the past several months, I've been unemployed, diligently looking for a job. Now that that huge stress and unknown has been lifted, other not-so-important concerns have been forced to the front for me to worry about. If you're someone who has experience with anxiety, you know this feeling far too well. From here, you usually go to a place of guilt, feeling bad about having anxiety when you know for damn sure you have it so much better than so many people. And though this realization is a good step, it still perpetuates the cycle and the anxiety continues.

So how do you end the cycle? As a person who definitely doesn't have it all figured out yet, I still feel like I have enough experience with anxiety to be able to properly answer this question. And I think the answer is to just simply handle it. Whether it's learning to breathe, keeping a journal, meditating, medicating or talking to a neutral third party of sorts, I think that recognizing, accepting and handling anxiety is the only way to give it less power and ultimately rid yourself of the worry. 


JanM ♥ said...

Oh I know how that is. I always worry about things especially ones that are out of my control. But then again, when I think about it, at the end of the day, I have what is important to me and that's what matters. I hope everything goes well!


look see (naomi) said...

I recognise the feelings you're describing all too well! I don't think I've completely got an answer yet though. I make decisions all the time to quit worrying and stop being anxious about things I can't control, but it takes a real conscious effort to actually do it.

I think what I need to do is make some time every single day to pause and make a conscious effort to quit that ruminating. Most days I feel like I'm too busy, but I think it would really help.

And I need to turn my phone off. And step away from the computer! (After reading some blogs, of course!!)

Niken said...

when i was in that phase, i kept myself busy. whether it was doing a voluntary work, cleaning up, anything. just keep myself busy. i hope you'll get a job that you love soon. but Allie, one thing that i realised is that, there will always be one thing or another that makes you worry. with or without job. it's a phase. and i believe that you'll get it through. i have faith :)

Z said...

I agree completely. As someone who has struggled with anxiety in the past (that's for a long other blog post) I go by the motto: if you think hard enough, you'll get anxious. In high school I had straight up problems with anxiety and ocd but since I entered college they've definitely died down. I think most of it is that I've learned how to train myself to be productive with my anxiety. I channel it into writing a list or getting one thing done and done well, then I move on. that's just what helps me and hopefully I'll be able to use that for the rest of my life. best of luck with your worrying!