A few months back I wrote a post on anxiety and panic attacks. Firstly I want to say thank you so much for all your kind words! As much as I wish other people didn’t suffer from them, I am glad I’m not alone.
I thought I would start a post series of tips for anxiety. Things that I find useful and things that I know are useful but also struggle to implement. I have had a lot of feed back from you guys, saying you too, suffer from anxiety. So I thought that this could be a safe place for us to discuss ideas and struggles about dealing with anxiety in a fast placed 2015.
My first tip I think is one of the most important.
Listen and Be Heard
No one knows your body like you do. While experiencing anxiety is a normal part of being human, just like being happy, sad, grateful, angry etc etc, and everyone experiences different levels of these. Only you know what levels is normal for you.
Listen to your body and understand what your normal is. Understanding this is invaluable. When you can identify what a higher level of anxiety is for you, you can begin to address it. It will get better.
Asking for help can be hard but very beneficial. There are so many different options out there to help you cope and deal with anxiety. So it is VERY important that you’re heard and taken seriously. While I don’t want to freak people out about asking for help, I want to be 100% honest with you. In my experience there have been times when medical professionals have not taken my anxiety seriously.
I have had ‘advice’ such as, ‘just look at the bright side of life’, ‘fake it till you make it’ or ‘just take a few deep breathes and you will be fine’. While these are all important things to do, they are really not enough to overcome extreme levels of anxiety and are not acceptable. YOU DESERVE BETTER.
Get a second opinion, heck, get a third, forth or fifth if you have to. Be the squeaky wheel and make yourself be heard. I would love to say that things like this don’t happen in 2015 but the reality is there is still so much to learn about anxiety, that there is not always the understanding needed. Don’t let other people tell you how you feel and that what you are experiencing is ‘just normally’. Push back, speak out and be heard!
The good news is there WILL be someone who listens and can give guidance and strategies. Things DO get better and you CAN cope.
I would love for you guys to have a chat in the comments about any tips you have for anxiety. Or let me know if there are any topics or ideas you want to to discuss.
Remember it does get better!
Alisha Barbara xx
New Zealand Help Lines:
The Depression Helpline (0800 111 757)
Healthline (0800 611 116)
Lifeline (0800 543 354)
Samaritans (0800 726 666)
Youthline (0800 376 633)
Alcohol Drug Helpline (0800 787 797)
In an emergency call 111