• Aileen Pound

Anxie.....ty baby xx

Most people have heard of the word anxiety, and some may have experienced anxiety once or twice in their lives. For most people, this happens rarely and usually goes away once the cause of the anxiety is over. Such as taking that test, going for that job interview, or finally plucked up the courage to ask that person out that you've secretly crushed on for an age, am I right or am I right!

However, there is a group of people living out there in the world that suffer anxiety daily, and I am one of those people. I have suffered anxiety for as long as I can remember. When I was younger, it wasn't quite so bad, and for the most part, getting through whatever it was that was causing my anxiety usually got rid of it. As I got older, the anxiety got worse; my anxiety level increased exponentially and became more frequent. 

Over the years, I have learned a few things about living with anxiety:

  • It's like a silent monster sitting under the surface, just waiting to strike when you least expect it and at the most inopportune times.

I remember one morning lying in bed, my life was amazing. I had just bought a new house, had a great job, and was in a relationship. There was no reason to suddenly wake up with anxiety so bad that I couldn't get out of bed, my heart was beating like a set of bongo drums, I was sweating, and I felt sick to the stomach. Luckily I had a fantastic boss who I was able to text and let him know and instead of being angry at me, told me to take the day off and asked if there was anything he could do to help.

  • People who suffer from anxiety look healthy on the outside. Slap on a coat of make-up, wear a gorgeous outfit, and no one would even know on the inside your basically a bowl of mush!

Every day I would get up for work, or go on my holiday - whatever it may be that I was doing and not a soul would know how I was feeling on the inside. Anxiety is a little bit like high blood pressure (which I also have; unfortunately) from the outside; no one would ever know you suffer from high blood pressure. On the inside, blood pressure is a silent killer - causing several unwanted problems. 

Well, it's the same with anxiety, suffering from anxiety has many unwanted side effects - such as in my case raising my blood pressure, lack of sleep, changes to your breathing pattern, dizziness, feeling faint, tingling, weakness. There are so many other unwanted side effects of anxiety on the body, and some are detrimental to your body and health long term.

  • Suffering from anxiety can, at times, make you appear introverted, shy, and awkward to those that don't know you.

For the most part, I am quite extroverted; as a child, I was the family entertainer - busting a move and breaking out in song for my grandma Pat to one of her favorite singers, John Farnam. Not a week would go by when I wouldn't dance and sing to "bring the pressure down," awaiting applause at the end. However, as my anxiety worsened, I would become shy and more introverted (until I felt comfortable, then it was a case of could you shut her up.) So many times, people would judge me and think I was snobby or that I was being a bitch when, in fact, I was trying to control the fear inside. Trying to make it through the party, or work, or the new encounter with someone I didn't know.

So how have I learned to deal with my anxiety over the years? I tried prescription tablets many moons ago to help with my anxiety; however, after sitting at my desk for a zombie for three days, I realised it wasn't' the path for me - I may like watching zombie movies, but I don't want to star in my own verfsion of one! So I started researching vitamins that can help. I used St Johns Wart, Executive B stress formula, and Fish Oil Tablets. Always remember to talk to your doctor first, especially if you are on other medications.

When I started trying for a baby, my doctor put me on a new blood pressure tablet (there are only two or three safe blood pressure tablets you can take while pregnant.) The one I was on also acted as a beta-blocker (which helps slow and control your heartbeat.) I have since stayed on this as it works for the most part in helping with my anxiety..

Other things that have helped me control my anxiety are:

  • Yoga and meditation (I am still not great at meditation, but it helps get my overworked brain in check.)

  • Avoid alcohol, caffeine, and nicotine, as these can make your anxiety worse.

  • Excercise - any exercise will help, find an activity that works for you.

  • Aromatherapy oils - oils around the house, in your bath, or grab an aromatherapy massage - lavender is a must!

  • Herbal teas - such as chamomile or there are a variety of teas now to help with sleep and relaxation.

  • Before you go to bed, write down anything that will keep you up at night - a grocery list, to-do list a list to remind you of your lists!!!

  • If you are going through a period of high anxiety, identify what is on your mind or making you anxious, write them down and then action them. There are going to be things you have no control over (as an example Coronavirus) you have no control over Corona Virus - so accept that and control what you can - hand sanitizer, social distancing wearing a mask. The things you do have control over start working through them one by one. You would be amazed at the difference this makes in your life and how much more in control you feel.

  • Talk to someone, whether it is a counselor, partner, friend, or someone else with anxiety (like me). Talking helps and makes you feel like you're not alone, and it's not all in your head. 

  • Please don't be embarrassed or ashamed; it's not your fault, and there is nothing wrong with you, and it doesn't make you broken or faulty.

  • Don't let others make you feel bad about having anxiety - talk to people about it and educate them if they don't get it smile and leave it be not everyone is going to get it.

  • Smile, slap on some armor (make-up, or whatever gives you confidence,) and get on with your day the best you can.

Lastly, believe in yourself, you will be ok, and you can live with anxiety. 

I have a friend called Jess that I have worked with for many years, and she also suffers from anxiety. Just as I was proofreading my blog, I went onto Facebook, and I read about the Facebook group for people with anxiety, she has started called Ziatee. Jess is also about to launch her t-shirt line (due for sale end of July) for those that suffer from anxiety check out her Facebook Group for details! I just thought this was cool and a great way to band together and share the awareness.

Always remember, you are not alone; there are people out there that love you and want to help. Most importantly, don't suffer in silence, grab help with both hands and kick anxiety in the ass! xx

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