This is going to be quite an honest account by me.
*Disclaimer* None of the things I am going to write about are rational. I know this, yet it is sometimes physically impossible to stop my brain thinking about it, and then worrying about it.
Some of you may get it, some may not, but I’m grateful for you spending the time reading about it. If you have been suffering in silence than I want you to know that there are many people just like us. Maybe this post will help you come to terms with that.
As mentioned above, anxiety for me is NOT rational in any way shape or form.
Oh my god. The amount of times I tell myself and other people this can get tiresome. Luckily the people around me know I need to talk about it. I repeat myself quite often, especially in my head.
But I am acutely aware of it too. I worry about my heart and palpitations. I worry about money (not so much anymore) even though there is no need to. I worry about the thing I said to someone last week and feel the need to apologise immediately to ease my anxiety. This is even when I know rationally I’ve done nothing wrong.
Sometimes these feelings snowball in my head and get bigger and bigger. I tell you its ridiculous! That direct debit that didn’t come out yesterday suddenly leads to thoughts like “Okay it’s not come out. That means bank charges. That means taking money I might not have. What if the company don’t get my payment and they start calling me? Maybe that’s why I keep getting unknown calls to me phone and I haven’t realised. What if my credit rating is affected? I want to get a mortgage but all this is not helping!”
That is literally exactly what goes through my head in most situations. So stupid I know.
Anxiety can make me become a bit obsessive.
Not OCD, but it can get silly and I know it. I’m talking things like replying to a message. Re-reading the message to make sure the right meaning is given just in case I missed it the first time. Then sending another message to correct the implication of my last message. Then keep checking for a reply so I can reply straight back in case I upset the person.
This process also happens in conversation too. I find myself stuttering, repeating myself and/or sitting in silence for long periods of time processing every aspect of my life. I process conversations that also may have offended someone. I am SO obsessed with making people happy that I worry at every moment when I said the wrong thing. I’m talking things that have happened weeks/months ago.
The obsessive aspect also spreads into daily jobs too. When I’m at work and I’m processing whatever it is I’m processing, I can check something 5-6 times just in case I do the wrong thing. I am terrified of doing something wrong that I repeatedly check my work to make sure it’s correct. I’m constantly checking for feedback (good and bad) to make sure I’m doing it right. Sometimes to the annoyance of my colleagues.
Anxiety can and has deeply affected my self confidence.
I’ve always been shy. I’m much less shy now but I have a lot of self confidence issues. When I’m given compliments I think the person is joking. Good feedback just floats right over my head. I am extremely critical on myself and give myself a hard time at every occasion.
I struggle with busy places now due to the sheer number of people there. I was always the one who was out and encouraging everyone else to join me. I loved it. Now though, I hardly ever go out and I have to get quite a few drinks down me to start to relax. This is where my issue with drinking came from i think.
My comfort zone is well and truly one the sofa/in the bed at home. At any opportunity I will happily stay at home. Honestly a lot of people don’t recognise my lifestyle anymore. I’ve completely changed!
I apologise – A LOT. I feel like such a bother a lot of the time too.
You’ll never know the amount of times I’ve been told to stop apologising for everything. It falls out of my mouth though even before I realise it! I apologise for things that may or may not be my fault. But to me it’s easier to just say it now than the possibility of the other person thinking me rude for not.
When I do have issues that I need help with, I can’t talk about it easily because I know everyone else has their own issues. I feel like such a pain when talking about my problems that most of the time it’s easier not saying anything at all. Why would someone want to hear about MY problems? It just adds extra burden onto their shoulders.
No amount of people telling me they care and want to help will make it any easier. If you are one of these then I’m sorry! Most of the time there is nothing you can do.
Having anxiety is a very lonely experience.
Finally, before I met my other half I was lonely. I went out with friends but they couldn’t be around me all of the time. The times I was on my own sometimes physically hurt for the pain anxiety gave me. Having people around me kept the thoughts at bay and kept me busy.
Talking about anxiety is still very difficult. Putting on a brave face all of the time is exhausting. All I want to do is hide away and not face anything. When I do talk about my issues it doesn’t even make me feel better. It’s mentally exhausting so I tend to avoid it.
However, I do have a really great bunch of friends who have helped. My family are also massively supportive and I’m thankful to each and every one of you.
If any of this resonates within you and you want to talk – PLEASE get in touch. Sometimes talking to someone other than your family/friends can be a great help too.
I cannot and will not judge. If I judge then I must judge myself (which is scary so I won’t be I promise).
Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Even if you just want to share – I’m all ears!
Here are some more posts written by me which you might find useful:
The reasons why being organised beats anxiety
15 amazing resources to help your inner anxiousness
A letter to my younger self…
Bye for now!