If, like me, you’re anxiety isn’t a clinical issue, and you’ve been made to feel stupid, weak, a nuisance, a burden, and other equally unsupportive things, just because you’re battling your own mind, let me tell you why that thinking is wrong whether it comes from others, or originates inside.
When I went to a GP for help he said something that I’ve never forgotten. “You think you’re weak and stupid don’t you?” I nodded into my sodden handkerchief. He said “You’re not, far from it. Every single person I’ve ever seen in the state you’re in has been strong for too long, you’ve been strong beyond endurance. People like you have come to the end of their tether, reached for more inner strength, worn out that tether, until the point where they just can’t do this anymore.”
I have never forgotten those words and nor should you. This goes back to the previous post where I said you weren’t born this way, something happened. You may know what that was, and if you do then take a moment to reflect on the fact that it was a real event that hurt you. If you don’t remember, it doesn’t mean that nothing happened, if your anxiety isn’t medically based, then something did happen.
It doesn’t matter that when you find out it sounds unimportant, it meant something to you at that time, especially if you were a child without an adult’s ability to translate meaning and add it to words. Don’t second guess your younger self. Knowledge is power, it’s a tool for change, use it! Puberty alone has a lot to answer for, so does school bullying, and even work bullying.
Here are a few questions for you to consider:
- Do you know when it started and how?
- What is your first recollection of anxiety, how did it manifest?
- Does it have a particular pattern (agoraphobia, flying, travel, food, etc.)?
- Is it there all the time, or do you have quiet moments?
- Does something specific set it off?
That’s just a few questions to help you get to know your anxiety, in order for you to start taking your power back. Until you understand it you can’t beat it. Imagine being put in the pilot’s seat of a large jet aeroplane and being asked to safely fly 500 people to the other side of the world? You wouldn’t have a clue where to start (unless you’r a pilot, in which case think brain surgery), yet someone who knows how to fly a plane (or a brain) wouldn’t even be phased by the problem. As such, you need to become fully informed about your issues.
I hope these ideas are starting to help you feel that you can take control of your mind back.
Just never forget – you’ve been too strong for your own good for too long!