What Anxiety Really Feels Like
Anxiety is feeling like you can’t take a deep breath because the weight of impending doom is just too heavy! It’s feeling as if the room is closing in on you. It’s a racing heart and sweaty palms. It’s cancelling plans for the third time, and then feeling so guilty about it after and worrying you’ll give up on our friendship. It’s feeling unapproachable and awkward in social situations. Sometimes I freeze up and can’t think straight before I speak and then wonder ‘what in the erf did I just say?’. It’s like your brain goes in to a fog and your body goes numb.
It’s losing sleep over something that happened weeks ago and shouldn’t even matter! It’s totally irrational but very real! It’s driving 20 min back home just to make sure you turned the stove off, even though you know you did! It’s wondering what life is like without this heavy burden that makes life so damn hard some days. Anxiety is a real B$TCH! But I am not! I’ve also included my self care checklist!
What’s ‘Normal’ Anyway?
It’s normal to get a little anxious from time to time, but people who suffer from anxiety disorder have uncontrollable feelings of worry that ultimately affects their day to day lives. It’s… awful!
As someone who has dealt with anxiety most of my life, here’s what it feels like for me. I wanted to share this story to help people understand what anxiety is, what it feels like and what it looks like!
It Makes Me Look Like A Mean Girl
I usually have a bitch face on, and don’t even realize it! And, sometimes I ‘check out’ mentally and it’s super annoying cuz I want to be a part of the conversation but I can’t focus enough to join in. If I do join in and manage to speak up, and that’s a big if, I’ll usually end up saying something that doesn’t make total sense and then go home and worry about it. So I prefer to just stay quiet and wind up looking very unapproachable instead ugh!
I can see you talking, but can’t even hear the words you’re saying. My anxiety is causing my mind to race a mile a minute.
It feels like the room is closing in on me. I’m over-thinking about how overwhelming this is and jumping to conclusions about what you’re thinking about me. I’m probably intimidated by how confident you seem and I’m wishing i could be so comfortable. 😕 How nice it must be for this all to come so naturally for you. How nice it must be to not have anxiety.
You’ll Only Understand If You Have Anxiety
When I don’t come across as rude I can come across as an awkward, babbling idiot that cuts people off when they’re talking. Not because I don’t care what you’re saying, it’s cuz I’m so anxious I can’t shut the erf up! Anxiety is something awful! Then, people are shocked to hear I have anxiety because I seem out-going! Little do they know how I actually feel!
I’m usually fiddling with something in my hands. This way I have something else to focus on in order to distract me… not from you, but from me. The mind is such a powerful thing, and your thoughts and feelings are literally everything.
I also have a tendency to cancel plans if I’m having a bad day. It’s not that I don’t want to see you. I do, but the thought of going to a social event drains me. Then, I fear that I’ve cancelled on you too many times and you’ll give up on our friendship! Don’t give up! Eventually, I’ll come around.
Sometimes I’d honestly rather be known as a mean girl, than have to explain my anxiety.
I have plenty of good days too, where I’m ‘normal’ish lol 😂 it’s not all bad! Here are some things that help me feel better!
Think You Have Anxiety? Here Are Signs You’re Right
- Sense of impending doom and danger, leading to panic
- Nervousness and tense feeling you can’t shake.
- Racing heart.
- Finding it hard to take a deep breath.
- Rapid breathing.
- Sweaty palms.
- Blushing face.
- Feeling tired.
- Difficulty sleeping or sleeping too much.
- Trouble concentrating.
My Self Care Checklist For Mental Health
Everyone says talking about it helps, but talking about my anxiety doesn’t really help me much to be honest. Self care and mental health are absolutely connected. Here’s what does help me and hopefully you too!
I’ve discovered a few things that help me get through the tough times. Obviously talk to your doc before taking any medication or vitamins… I’m no doctor!!
Self Care Checklist
Vitamins For Mental Health:
Vitamin D. My doctor has told me that there’s a link between low vitamin d levels and increased anxiety and depression, which makes sense cuz January is a really tough time for many anxiety sufferers. So I started taking vitamin D supplements and I’ve noticed a little impact on my mood;)
Vitamin B Complex. I had blood work reveal i was deficient in some of the b vitamins which was part of the reason why I was feeling so down and crappy! Started taking a B vitamin complex and it is definitely helping my mood!
Self Care Mental Health
Self care:) This has the greatest short-term effect on my mood! A little retail therapy, a box of chocolate covered cherries or dinner and a movie with friends all helps me so much! But, sometimes I go a little overboard and eat an entire tub of ice cream or spend $400 at Atlas Divine and almost immediately regret my decisions… So it is all about balance!
Get Outside. The Power Of The Great Outdoors
Being outdoors has so many benefits, from improving mental focus to boosting your mood! How do you feel when you go for a walk in the sunshine? Happy? The sun helps your body produce vitamin d, which naturally boost serotonin levels- an instant pick me up!
Check out the full story and find out why the outdoors can really boost your mental health, here – The Power Of The Great Outdoors.
Exercise | Meditate | Sleep
Make sure to take care of your physical body. Exercise and meditation have major impacts on your mental health and overall mood!
Oh and sleep. Sweet, sweet sleep! Good sleeping habits are life changing when it comes to your mental health- anxiety and depression. Even during a good streak, after a bad night’s sleep – I’m an anxious mess!
BUT even with the vitamins and self care, if you still have ups and downs you might want to talk to your doctor about prescription medication. Don’t be afraid to get help. There’s still a stigma around mental illness. We fear people will think we are weird or violent if we come out with our anxiety or depression. Don’t let those fears stop you from getting better!
If you have anxiety, depression, ptsd, bi polar or any mental health issues follow along and know you’re not alone:) I’m over here suffering too!