We called this year 20plenty and it came jam packed with plenty surprises. I, just like you, was never prepared for some of the things that I experienced this year, good or bad. Years ago I would have found myself feeling cursed but this year I think I have learnt to accept the reality that we live in an uncertain world.
There is no amount of planning that can save us from whatever the universe has set in place. We have no idea what will happen in the next minute, hour or month. Anxiety always has other plans, it has us stuck imagining the worst and hurting for no reason. Darling, everything about this life thing is uncertain, embrace uncertainty.
August was a tough month for me, I took L after L after L. With each one I slipped into a state of anxiousness. I woke up and my first thought was of worry over something, couple this with post traumatic stress (a story for another day). I worried more than I should have over things I had no control over and I wasn’t sleeping well at all. I had at least 3 to 4 nightmares per night and calming myself after I woke up took time.
My body started to hurt, I had a persistent headache and I hated being alive. I remember sitting on my bed, staring out the window and questioning my life. And you know when you get there you have completely lost your way. My work was not so great, I could see it but I didn’t have the energy so I just let it be. That’s when I stopped myself, it was enough. I wasn’t going to allow myself to fall deeper into this, I was one step away from depression.
Anxiety is a very distractive power tool, it will takeover your mind and your body so quickly. I had never gone through the physical pain I did due to anxiety ever in my life and believe me you don’t want to be there.
I decided I am taking control over what I can and that’s my mental health. Remember everything begins in the mind, you take control of that and you are good. I started off by practicing gratitude, in this year where many have lost lives and we have grieved, how dare I be ungrateful for breath. I have a roof over my head, I am clothed and I have food. Quite frankly this is the elite starter pack in 2020.
And then I took a step further and started affirming myself again, each morning and at night before I slept. With each day, the tension became less and less, I could get through the day and get some work done.
I get everyone who may be struggling with anxiety this year, you feel like you are losing control of everything, but step back and remember that our lives are made up of experiences. Try your best to avoid clinging onto the bad experiences and give them all your energy, avoid lettting them take up space they shouldn’t. Yes, it happened but does it define you?
It does not define you, it shapes you. I always say, take the lesson and grow through it. It’s not easy, but it must be done. Feel, cry, learn, practice gratitude and affirm yourself. Be kind to yourself, especially considering what this year has brought us. You are doing your best and for that I applaud you. Well done.
In this series I will continue to unpack more on anxiety and how to work around it. I am excited to grow with you all! CIAO!