It’s Okay To Have A Bad Day

First off, let me say that I understand that no one experiences anxiety in the exact same way. Secondly, let me assure you that I know just how difficult experiencing anxiety and panic attacks can be. It’s frustrating, heartbreaking, and at times – very, very scary. I also know how great it is to make progress and to witness yourself doing so. At the same time, though, it’s hard seeing bad days come between you and that joy.

I’ve been doing very well lately with getting through my anxiety. I’ve noticed a lot of progress being made on my end and I’m not afraid to say that I’m quite proud of myself. Two days ago, however, something happened. I had the first panic attack I’ve had in a while. I absolutely hated that feeling. 

Having that panic attack made me feel like I was reverting to how I once was; taking a step in the wrong direction. That night was not easy for me and to make matters worse, I hardly got any sleep. The next day was okay, but last night was difficult again. I didn’t have what I would call a panic attack, but my anxiety was extreme and my legs felt like rubber beneath me. I felt weak, scared, and pathetic. I was also with someone less than understanding, so things were not in the least bit easy to deal with. 

The truth is though that I am strong, able to get through my anxiety, and making a good amount of progress. Bad days can be saddening and frustrating, but they do not take away all that we’ve accomplished. Also, there are people in this world who might try to make us feel lousy for struggling – we need to try our hardest not to let them. Trust me when I say that I know how difficult that is. Still, we need to try. No one knows quite what we’re going through or how hard we’re trying except ourselves and we cannot allow others to take away our confidence.

Please know that it is okay to have bad days. Having bad days does not mean we’re not making progress or getting better. Also, bad days aren’t necessarily a sign of danger ahead – they’re just moments of struggle. We’re stronger than our anxiety and every day is a chance for improvement. Please remember that and never give up on your fight against anxiety. 

The Prickly Part

In my last post, I mentioned how I changed my blog’s background and how I thought it fit with the theme of the blog perfectly. While dealing with anxiety and other mental health issues can be prickly and painful at times like a cactus, if you work hard on a consistent basis to overcome your obstacles, you can achieve progress – a beautiful thing.

While I have experienced many beautiful days of witnessing my progress, today included one of the painful and prickly parts that oftentimes occur with struggling with anxiety. Today I saw myself slip backwards, something that is never easy to see.

I went out with a relative today and because it took longer than expected, I began to grow anxious. I’m embarrassed to say this, but sometimes when I’m out and I feel so anxious that I can’t move, I end up sitting on the floor. It makes me feel pathetic.

I haven’t done this in a while. Lately when I go in somewhere (while it may not be for very long), I usually do pretty well. I might need a little bit of help, but I don’t resort to sitting down. Today was different though and it reminded me of all the times in the past when I did this – too many to count.

I like to keep this blog pretty positive, but sometimes I admit that it’s hard. It’s hard to give myself credit for at least trying to go in where I went today and not leaving early, or saying that sometimes things just don’t work out. It’s hard to stay positive while inside, I’m beating myself up for not doing better.

That’s the thing with struggling with anxiety, or any other mental health issue for that matter. Sometimes it’s difficult to see the positivity and light when you feel like you’re surrounded by negativity and darkness.

Here’s what we have to remember. We have to remember all of the times that we’ve faced our fears or overcome our obstacles. We have to remember all of the times that we’ve made progress. Though it may be difficult to believe, just because we struggle or experience times of temporary regression, it does not mean that our past progress or current progress is erased. It also doesn’t mean that we won’t make progress ever again.

So let’s all do ourselves a favor and cut ourselves a break. I’m not saying that we shouldn’t get a little upset when things don’t go how we want (after all, sometimes getting a little upset with ourselves shows us that we have to work harder), but what I am saying is that we have to stop always getting so down on ourselves and, instead, focus on all of the amazing things that we have accomplished and how hard we try on a daily basis to be successful!

If you’re currently struggling or if you’re feeling down about not doing as well at something as you would have hoped, please remember that we all struggle. Also, please try and focus on all the good that you have accomplished and can continue to accomplish with hard work.

 

The ‘B’ Word – Burden

I’ve written about this before, but I think as anxiety sufferers, many of us know what it’s like to feel like burdens – to feel like we’re driving everyone around us crazy and making things hard on them.

Let me start out by saying that I actually really like my personality. I’ve always thought I was a pretty nice person, etc. What I don’t like is my anxiety and how, over the years, it’s made me struggle so much and, at times, made me feel like I hate myself.

Last night I had a panic attack – maybe the worst one in a little while. Let’s just say that it made me feel pathetic and while I’m happy I have seen some improvements in my anxiety (and am grateful for them), it still hurts to see myself struggle like I did last night. On top of that, two of my family members made mean comments and I’m not ashamed to say that the high level of anxiety, coupled with the cruel and hurtful comments, left me crying for quite a while.

I oftentimes feel like a burden when anxiety hits. When I’m at home and have a really anxious moment and need help or when I’m out and need help, I can sense people growing annoyed and it’s not paranoia. I know this because I’ve heard the cruel comments that sometimes come out of the mouths of loved ones. Don’t get me wrong I know they love me and care about me, but I also know that anxiety isn’t easy on anyone and since I’m the one with the anxiety, it’s hard not to feel like it’s all my fault – like I’m not a huge burden. My dad and others have reassured me that this isn’t true, but sometimes the actions of others speak louder than words.

I’d like to say that I’ll never feel this way again, but I can’t promise you that. I can’t promise you that you won’t ever feel this way either. Anxiety is hard to deal with and it’s hard for loved ones to deal with as well. Still, we must try to remember that we are NOT burdens, though we may feel otherwise. If anything is a burden, it is anxiety. We are NOT our anxiety. While we may feel wholly intertwined, our anxiety is a separate entity from who we are. We struggled with anxiety, we are not the same as anxiety. I know it can be hard to separate the two in our minds sometimes, but we don’t have to allow anxiety to control us or how we feel about ourselves.

Also, while I know how difficult it is to ignore, if someone is cruel to you due to your anxiety (or any other reason for that matter), remember how hard you’re trying to fight your struggles and get over your obstacles. Remember that the person who is judging you does not know what you’re going through and most likely, never will. Remember how amazing and wonderful you are and all the progress you have made. If you keep working hard, you will succeed!

Happy Valentine’s Day. Remember to have love for yourself as well as for others! ❤

Moment To Moment

Something that many anxiety sufferers are probably familiar with, are the many waves of anxiety. One moment you can be doing really well and noting all the progress you’ve made and then in another, you feel as if you’re struggling more than ever. This feeling is not fun and more than that, it’s frustrating. Don’t get me wrong, I’m always grateful for those moments and days when I’m doing well, but I always hate when things come falling – or crashing, down.

Take yesterday, for example. I got outside quite a few times, pedaled about 4 miles worth, did some sit ups, and did some other stretching. However, during that same day, I struggled with other things that I wish I would have done better at. Also, so far today, things are a little rough and I’m feeling kind of lousy.

I know that I’m not a failure and I know that I’ve made a lot of progress. I’m proud of myself. Still, it doesn’t feel good to struggle – to have a hard time doing things that are simple for so many people. These things were once simple for me too and now, due to my anxiety and over-thinking, so many things are way more difficult than they should be.

Something else that’s really frustrating is the fact that sometimes I try so hard and yet it doesn’t seem to amount to much. Yes, yesterday I went outside a lot and exercised, but what about today? I don’t feel like the progress I made yesterday carried over like it should have. I think that’s a huge problem for me. I make progress but it’s like my mind wont accept it and learn from it. I would love to be able to think, “I made tons of progress yesterday and that shows me that I don’t have to worry about these things. I’m capable of getting through my anxiety and getting things done without trouble!” and be able to actually believe it. While I think on one hand, I believe that I’m able to do these things without anything bad happening, I know that there’s still a huge part of me that believes otherwise.

As many of you know, struggling with anxiety is not easy – it’s a constant battle. Many times trying our best or at all might seem pointless, may seem futile. However, the truth is that we have to try our hardest and that it is worth it! No matter how difficult it is to fight the war against anxiety, we must not give up! We can get through this, we just have to refuse to surrender!

I wish you all the best in getting over your fears and through your anxiety. Please know that you have my support.