How I dealt with my pain-anxiety, and what I’m still working on.
The process of healing can be a daunting one, but it’s instrumental in the restoration process. I had been dealing with severe anxiety for some time now. I hate to admit this because I don’t want people to feel sorry for me, but I felt strongly about sharing this. I just want those who might be dealing with anxiety to know that there is hope and healing.
the back story
We all go through some form of anxiety in our lives, but some cases can be more serious. For me the anxiety became so serious that it began to interfere with my life, work and overall happiness. My anxiety was triggered in early 2016. I began having severe panic attacks that would last for hours. It was like I was outside of my body and I would stay that way for hours. I had three episodes like this; two at home and one at church. I believe this anxiety was triggered by feeling trapped in my marriage and feeling overwhelmingly unhappy. When the episode at church occurred, I knew that something was truly wrong and I sought out help. I began seeing a therapist and she gave me great advice, direction and the courage to go through with my divorce. We both agreed that the marriage was unhealthy and needed to be dissolved.
After deciding to move forward with the divorce, I finally felt that life was moving in the right direction; until I fell for someone. Before I left my therapist she warned me not to engage in relations with anyone until I fully healed. I guess I thought I had healed, but I never did. Before I knew it I came in contact with an old friend, and I ended up falling hard for him. He ended up moving away, and his feelings changed. As his feelings changed he ended up treating me badly. I believe not fully healing from my previous marriage, then dealing with disrespect from the new guy; coupled with additional stressors. Triggered my anxiety to creep back up.
I recognized that my anxiety was slowly creeping up on me when I started to behave outside of myself. I was sad, overthinking (more than I usually do), jittery, messing up at work, and just feeling angry. (It’s important to recognize certain triggers that promote anxiety this way you can act fast). The only thing that seemed to keep me afloat was my blog. My blog seemed to take me away from whatever I had internalized and gave me purpose.
How I Healed
Upon recognizing that my anxiety was slowly returning. I realized that it returned due to the fact that I never took time to fully heal from all the pain. I took the following steps to finally heal and let go of the pain.
Step 1: Removed Negative Triggers
My negative triggers were mostly people. I separated myself from those who I felt had a negative affect on me and triggered negative emotions within me. It didn’t feel good to let them go because I cared deeply for them, but it was for the best. At the end of the day I had to put myself first.
Step 2: Silenced Distractions
My main distraction was social media. I made the decision to temporarily leave social media in order to take care of my mental health. When I first left social media, I was feeling all sorts of emotions. I was feeling down, angry, annoyed, hard on myself, anxious, depressed and I just needed that space.
Step 3: Found A Positive Outlet
I took time to get familiar with my bible. Each day I would try to keep my phone away and just read my bible. I started reading proverbs. I would read one page every morning and gradually increased to two pages every morning. I won’t lie, at first it was hard not to check my phone but eventually I didn’t have the urge to look at my phone.
I honestly got over my anxiety by reading my bible, it sounds cliché but it really worked. Reading proverbs gave me a lot of wisdom which is something that I had been praying for. I finally realized that I can’t handle everything in my own strength and I just left all my cares and worries in God’s hands. He’s still working on me, but overall I feel more clear. Not to impose my religion on anyone but God is real and his word does speak volumes when you open your heart and listen.
Step 4: Turn Negative Thoughts Into Positive Thoughts.
I started focusing on positive things and if I thought about something negative, I turned it into a positive. I basically used reverse psychology on myself. It helped me to see my situation in a new light.
Step 5: Positive Reinforcers
I left the trap music alone and began listening to more uplifting music, my main station to listen to was KLove 96.7 FM. This really helped shape my mind and spirit for the best.
Step 6: I Did More Of What Made Me Happy!
I found joy in woking on my body. I began intensifying my workouts and really getting back in shape. I also started eating better. Healthier eating promotes a clear mind and a lighter frame. I also began focusing on my passion and creating new content for my blog. I could always find happiness in my blog and creating new content.
Here Is What I’m Still Working On
**I’m still dealing with my thoughts and over thinking things but slowly I’m getting better at letting things roll off me.
**I’m also working on not looking at everything as a direct threat. Sometimes I tend to think that people are attacking me and they very well could be the case, but instead of taking it personal I’ve been continuing to use reverse psychology and tell myself not to take things personal.
**I’m also working on truly forgiving those who have wronged me. Forgiveness is an ongoing process but once you can forgive. You truly free your mind and allow your heart the healing it needs.
In all, the way I continue to heal is to just keep reminding myself that life is too short to dwell on the negative stuff. There is just so much beauty all around. I recently saw this quote, “count your rainbows and not your thunder storms.” That put things in perspective. Also a verse that helped me was Philippians 4:6 which states. Don’t be anxious about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need and thank him for all he has done. This is now how I try to live my life, worrying less and trusting God more.
A lot of you checked up on me via text and social media which was touching. It’s always nice when strangers and friends alike care about your well-being. Thank You. Thank you for taking the time to read this post and I hope by sharing some of what I’ve gone through will help someone along the way. if you area dealing with anxiety, please seek help and don’t feel like you have to handle it all alone. Love you guys!