Life is often made out to be a list of decisions, stacked high and ready to be ticked off. Even the word itself “decision” has become as monstrously daunting and heavy as trying to go to sleep after watching a horror movie (which you told yourself not to watch) or hopelessly attempting to carry all your groceries (which you know you can’t) by running madly to the door before the weight keels you over.
As a teen, ‘decision making’ has been thrown, stuffed and flung down my throat **cough university. Not only that, but now there feels as if there is more pressure to make snap (couldn’t resist to click my fingers) decisions. It’s hard. And lets face it social expectations for not just us bubbled up teens, but for kiddies and the grownie ups too, seems to be coming to a boil.
Here is where you get your violin out… no I’m joking. What makes my decision making so hard for me personally is my anxiety. Which I hold my hands up and don’t doubt has affected everyone at some point. Whether that be trying to avoid that certain someone that has awkwardly blocked your path. Knowing whether to go for it and just ‘smile and wave’ or to quickly shuffle your butt out of there before they have a chance to see your face.
For me throughout my life so far there has been a clear line between my ‘aspirational decisions’ and my ‘anxious decisions’. How I see it is that you have the things that you would ‘in theory’ like to do if it were not for that tedious anxiety. And then pretty much all those anxious decisions that build a wall of avoidance we hide behind.
For sure anxiety has clouded my path. Now I can’t see the sign that should point me in the right direction. Perhaps others have passed me on this path, but I have been too scared to ask for their help so I am left here.
Feeling anxious of being judged has left my brain “confuzzled” (yes I like to blend words). It is mainly the bad narrator of my mind that makes me procrastinate, make excuses, literally doing anything, but come face to face with that decision.
It is like I’m or we are lost in an endless wood. We are tired, confused. We are all scared. What should we do? The answer is this… to find a path we first must climb a tree and see the view.
Yep that little cloud has caught up with me again. I’m pretty sure that if I let it I would receive a proper drenching. It’s days like this when all you want to do is stay in your misery coma (at least that is what it’s telling me). There is nothing else my body seems to want to do, but drown in it – bask in array of the poor-me’s in the hope that guilt which stirs in my veins will go away.
Here’s a metaphor for Harry Potter fans! The lowness is like a dementor which feeds off sadness. In a way it’s like the dementor has a grasp of our soul or rather our true selves. And although, Harry was cured by some sweet tasting chocolate which most of the time can help with the blues. A square or two too many can leave us with a guilty food baby or rather ironically back to square one which was feeling low to begin with. That is what JK was getting at. I have heard many a time that dementors were symbolic of depression, and you can definitely see why.
But, chocolate was only a temporary cure like comfort eating or the bad habits we end up in. Bare with I’m not a Potter buff but have watched the movies. How does JK have Harry overcome these demons? With positivity, of course. Now, I know such a word has been used many a patronising time, but it is true. We like the character Harry have to make a decision to either let ourselves be leeched by anxiety and depression or we can realise the power that we have and give them a shove off. At the end of the day Voldemort was really defeated by love. A love that he didn’t have. All he had was fear. A power run by fear is know true power at all!
So, how do we stop those dementors or cloaking darkness from attacking us? Well this tip is simple. Though perhaps harder to follow. The sooner you realise that you hold all the cards in your life. No one else. When you look at what you have rather than what you don’t (it doesn’t matter how big or small it is – as long as it is important to you), be thankful. You are loved. If you don’t feel that way then here is a virtual hug ( ) we love you! Remember all those times where you did something you never thought you could. Look back and hold on to that proud feeling. You can do anything. You can achieve anything. Don’t think, I am not like that person so I can’t become a famous painter or whatever it is you aspire to be. They had their troubles too. You just didn’t see it. I’m struggling with writing my book. I can feel crippled with self-doubt. But, I got to keep telling myself I can do it! Keep going. Aspire for what you want to do.
Those people that you want to be like or have been jealous of or simply inspire you. They were people who felt the fear and did it anyway. Simply they were the ones that didn’t give up.
So neither should you. And although, I wasn’t expecting to do such a long Harry Potter metaphor. Here it is #Tip 3 Be Harry Potter. Defeat those dementors with positivity.
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Today I took a step. And not just out in the rain that seemed to endlessly pour out of the heavens. But, a real step forward to getting myself out of Anxietytown or several if you are talking literally. Now, although I still have plenty of steps before I reach the border between Anxietytown and Freedom with every step whether that be crawling, running or hopping I will get there. And if I can, then so can you.
Picture back to a few weeks ago. At this time I had a really bad few weeks. As we do, when things feel particularly worse. I just felt pretty crap. I felt tense all the time like I couldn’t relax my muscles. I had lost some of my appetite (which I will say is completely unlike me) – my digestive system decided it would be fun to play a bad game a Tetris. I was getting anxious a lot. Well a lot for me. And it kept on stacking higher and higher. Not to mention the thoughts and other lardeedars. It just wasn’t fun. Still isn’t – though it is better.
At this point, all I wanted was help. I knew I needed and I wanted it as soon as. So, if you think you need help or if you say you don’t but you know that you do, get it. This is my 2nd time I went to my GP and also 2nd time I have been referred. Lets face it, it is a loonngg process and I understand scarily so for those who need it most. Granted it has come around quicker than last, but it just seems so difficult to get help. Something which is just wrong for so many reasons that I know many of you know.
So, as I came just by the minute on time, having being anxious on top of anxious because my Dad took a while to get ready, I finally took my step. A few days ago weirdly enough I was looking forward to this. This felt like my hope to getting better for good rather than for a while. So, as I took my hood down went in and waited while the nerves still bubbled in me.
When my name was finally called in the way that it always is in a clinical environment, I got up and went. Why I am bothering to say this? Well, that in itself is a step. A step you can also take.
When I sat down on those rubbish uncomfortable chairs and the same doctory (yes I made this word up) cold wall colour, every thing was put in a new perspective again. It always happens that you have to sieve through all the problems you have faced, perhaps feeling as if we have to prove ourselves that yes we are anxious people. Always thinking or regretting that we failed to mention a very important point. Once I had talked for a while and filled in that same form I had become familiar to, I began to feel it all hit me. I wanted to cry, but felt I couldn’t. It just felt so emotional and it is.
So, I said I would give you some tips on how to get better. And as I went home I was bewildered at what it is I could say to help. Now, it rings as loud as ever. Tip#1 If you haven’t already got help get it! Ask for it! Talk about it! Then you will be one step closer to the mighty land of Freedom.