CAN’T HELP YOUR ANXIETY? YES YOU CAN!
Going on the internet lately and it seems like everyone is going through a form of mental health variation or we’re at least led to believe so. I’m low on cash and presently unemployed. My 2020 body goals aren’t headed far, which is about right because, ‘healthy snacking’? I totally missed that one. Who even has the budget to include some some kind of diet? No one.
Speaking of the global pandemic, I have to say that I’m somewhat -thankful? Insensitive of me you might be thinking, but just stick with me on this one. Before the travel ban and movement restrictions, I had never been the type to explore even the porch of my house. I stay home, then stay home some more and when I’m really bored, I sleep, at home! Simple, life is good. So imagine my sort-of-excitement when we were all asked to stay home? what more could i ask for?
You see, the reason I stay indoors a lot has nothing to do with friends or family. I have friends and even more family. I stay put because it’s my safe place. It’s where everything within my reach is dark, where I can stay calm even though the world is crumbling. It’s my access to the other side. It’s where there are no people!
Going out on the other hand is chaos. Just the thought of catching a bus gives me goosebumps. I literally practice my sentences before I step out of my house, I repeat dialogues in my head just so I’m not caught off guard. I’m too scared to use sunshades because they’ll make me noticeable? Whatever going out was, I did not like and I wanted no part of it.
I don’t need medical diagnosis to know that I have people anxiety, or social anxiety disorder to be exact and neither do you. I had some questions and so I went to Google,“Hey Google, what is anxiety? How can I tell that I’m depressed? Does anxiety lead to depression?…” I had a lot of questions, and I needed answers immediately. And so I scrolled the wide variation of what the internet had to offer and i indeed found myself some answers: cause ain’t nobody got time for a real life medical consultation.
With simple research I found out that depression and anxiety are somewhat different. While they both suck and make you sad there’s a lot more ways to control anxiety than there is for depression . This means that there’s a lot more ways to handle social anxiety before it leads to anything else. Still on anxiety, you never really notice how it affects the course of your day. Something as simple as calling a friend would take forever because you can’t write a good dialogue in your head, when all you need to do in reality is make the call! you’re so cautious around life itself, you forget to even live it!
Unfortunately, a lot of younger Nigerians don’t believe in anxiety or depression, or at least the reality of it. The idea that there’s people out there who can’t even order take-out at a restaurant cause they’re too ‘shy’ is totally absurd. But, Yes, it happens. What you take as a subtle form of shyness is someone’s biggest nightmare. So the next time you’re starting a conversation with a somewhat shy person, please do try to ease yourself into it- it will do you both some good.
Dealing with anxiety for me has become more of a lifestyle. I started meditating and breathing. Every time my head felt full and about to explode, I cried. When my body felt weak with just the thought of going out, i took a deep breath. I wanted to feel better, and so I did. Not saying breathing makes everything better, but it does. Am I currently in the best state of mind? I could be better. The web has a ton of things to help make you feel better and handle anxiety well. My personal favorites would be:
- Acceptance — Things make you anxious and it’s totally fine.
- Prayer and meditation - This one can’t be over stressed. Take a few minutes every day to prophesy some good things into your mind, whatever your belief may be.
- Cleanse- Physically and mentally. I like to make a playlist for the week and play in the back-ground when i’m outside, it helps to kind of fade things into the background.
- Move on or just Move!
- Learn to be yourself — this would also translate as learning to explore everything you could become. You’ll never know until you try.
- Response pattern — Creating a positive response/reaction pattern to given situations work like magic. Try to remain optimistic no matter what people throw at you, literally and figuratively. Personally, i make a smile and then let my composure adjust accordingly.
People can become a burden just by existing and going about their business, but on the bright side, they could also uplift you ,and be reason you finally step out into the Light