LIVING WITH ANXIETY
I've been going back and forth for weeks about whether or not to should post this... but decided that at the end of the day I've made this space for not just creative work but as a sense of self-expression.
HERE WE GO ...
Anxiety has been THE biggest enemy in my life. I have always been an anxious person even as a child but I was always able to somehow curb or mask that anxiety. My family would often describe me as shy, quiet, moody but never fearful, or pessimistic. It wasn't until about 2/3 years ago when I felt completely broken that my anxiety became a real problem for me.
Growing up, I never thought I had a problem but I've always felt as if something was off or I just shouldn't be feeling the way I do. There was always something missing. Some days are great! I feel like I am on top of the world, I can pretty much accomplish anything I put my mind to and my work ethic is at its highest. While other days are not so great. On these days, I can't even make it out of bed. I constantly feel tired, pressured, and just a full weight of the world on my shoulders.
Mental health is not something that is often discussed in Jamaica ... even worse treated. Therapy wasn't even a thought at that point in my life but looking back, a bitch could use some therapy haha!
For so long I’ve locked away and buried a part of my life that I almost completely forgot it happened. I don’t talk about my childhood. It’s not something that often comes up in a conversation you know, and it wasn’t until recently when I had a conversation with my aunt that I made the connection from my childhood to a lot of my adult behavior. I've bottled everything up for so long that it’s now seeping into my life and multiplying my anxiety x10000.
So for a little clarity, I was an unplanned child. My parents didn't have much history together before my mom got pregnant but by the time I was born, they banded together to raise me. Between work and regular life, they struggled like any parent. For the first few years of my life, I was essentially raised by my aunt, which explains my absent relationship with my mom and when I was old enough to actually understand the things around me, that kind of destroyed my relationship with my dad. The toxic relationship my parents had has definitely impacted my life in more ways than I can admit and with the culture of Jamaica, no one really talks about these issues.
Now that I'm older and confronting my past, I've found a few ways that has helped me cope with my anxiety:
Focus on the things you can control
Try to maintain a positive attitude (positive affirmations)
Drink lots of water
Eat healthy, balanced meals (still working on it)
Take a few minutes, meditate a little
Dance it out!
Spend quality time with someone I love/enjoy being around
Read a good book ("Young, Dumb & Full of Hmm..." has been a recent fave!)
I still struggle everyday but this routine helps to lessen it.
What are some things you do to cope with anxiety?
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