10 Pictures To Show What It Really Feels Like Having Anxiety

10 Pictures To Show What It Really Feels Like Having Anxiety

I have to admit that anxiety is something that I personally have struggled with during my entire life. According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, anxiety disorders are the most common mental illness in the U.S., affecting 40 million adults in the United States 18 and older. This comes to roughly 18% of the U.S population.

The ADAA states that anxiety disorders develop from a complex set of risk factors, including genetics, brain chemistry, personality, and life events. Anxiety disorders are highly treatable, yet only about one-third of those suffering receive treatment.

I can relate on not wanting treatment. There are specific circumstances to which I am more likely to react negatively to. In fact, yesterday on the subway a man started up on a racist tirade, and he was screaming directly at me.

In NYC, most people can just brush this off as just another drunk man, but it makes me extremely anxious. I was trying to explain to my wife why I felt so agitated. She didn’t understand why my hands started to shake, why my heart began to race, why I started to get sweaty, and why I immediately enter into fight of flight mode.

Growing up, I was painfully shy, I often shut down in social settings and just picked a corner to hide in. Loud noises, like the door that was just slammed outside my home make me nervous.Crowds terrify me, and I get extremely anxious even when meeting up with friends.

As I have become older, I have learned to better cope. Thrusting myself into situations that force to me face my fears head on, over and over again. I’ve gone so far as going on television shows multiple times, performing my most vulnerable poetry pieces in front of perfect strangers, and delivering political speeches in front of hundreds of listeners. This is how I cope with my anxiety. Doesn’t make a lot of sense does it?


The following photographs are by Katie Crawford. Crawford, a 2015 Louisiana State University Fine Arts grad will take us on a visual journey illustrating what it is like to suffer from Anxiety and Depression.

Thankfully, I have never reached a point where the anxiety incapacitated me, and up until this point I have been able to overcome my episodes without any medical aids. However, for some people it can be a terrible and debilitating experience. Though I recognize that I have anxiety problems, mine are nowhere near as intense as what Katie illustrates here. Anxiety and depression are quite real disorders, and should be treated as such.

Katie Crawford Anxiety 31

    I’m so numb, that being numb has become a feeling.

    Katie Crawford Anxiety 91

      Depression is when you can’t feel at all. Anxiety is when you feel too much. Having both is a constant war within your own mind. Having both means never winning.


      Katie Crawford Anxiety 1

        Sleeping in the dark doesn’t scare me, the shadows created from the light in the dark do.

        Katie Crawford Anxiety 81

          The anxiety and depression are ever present, ready to take over at a moment’s notice.

          Katie Crawford Anxiety 101

            It feels like you are always holding a glass of water. Never letting go. Then one day you drop it, you let it fall and break.


            Katie Crawford Anxiety 71

              You fear living, while fearing death. Trapped in existence.

              Katie Crawford Anxiety 61

                The scars are deep and never healing.

                Katie Crawford Anxiety 41

                  My mind is my prison. There is no escape. I think, it’s worst. I don’t think, it’s worst. It will pass.


                  Katie Crawford Anxiety 51

                    It lives in the pit of your stomach. It’s like reaching for the bottom of the pool with your toes, but realizing you are in too deep.

                    Katie Crawford Anxiety 21

                      I know I’m breathing, I see my breath, but I can’t breathe.

                      Featured photo credit: Katie Crawford via

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                      Last Updated on November 15, 2018

                      Success In Reaching Goals Is Determined By Mindset

                      Success In Reaching Goals Is Determined By Mindset

                      What do you think it takes to achieve your goals? Hard work? Lots of actions? While these are paramount to becoming successful in reaching our goals, neither of these are possible without a positive mindset.

                      As humans, we naturally tend to lean towards a negative outlook when it comes to our hopes and dreams. We are prone to believing that we have limitations either from within ourselves or from external forces keeping us from truly getting to where we want to be in life. Our tendency to think that we’ll “believe it when we see it” suggests that our mindsets are focused on our goals not really being attainable until they’ve been achieved. The problem with this is that this common mindset fuels our limiting beliefs and shows a lack of faith in ourselves.

                      The Success Mindset

                      Success in achieving our goals comes down to a ‘success mindset’. Successful mindsets are those focused on victory, based on positive mental attitudes, empowering inclinations and good habits. Acquiring a success mindset is the sure-fire way to dramatically increase your chance to achieve your goals.


                      The idea that achieving our goals comes down to our habits and actions is actually a typical type of mindset that misses a crucial point; that our mindset is, in fact, the determiner of our energy and what actions we take. A negative mindset will tend to create negative actions and similarly if we have a mindset that will only set into action once we see ‘proof’ that our goals are achievable, then the road will be much longer and arduous. This is why, instead of thinking “I’ll believe it when I see it”, a success mindset will think “I’ll see it when I believe it.”

                      The Placebo Effect and What It Shows Us About The Power of Mindset

                      The placebo effect is a perfect example of how mindset really can be powerful. In scientific trials, a group of participants were told they received medication that will heal an ailment but were actually given a sugar pill that does nothing (the placebo). Yet after the trial the participants believed it’s had a positive effect – sometimes even cured their ailment even though nothing has changed. This is the power of mindset.

                      How do we apply this to our goals? Well, when we set goals and dreams how often do we really believe they’ll come to fruition? Have absolute faith that they can be achieved? Have a complete unwavering expectation? Most of us don’t because we hold on to negative mindsets and limiting beliefs about ourselves that stop us from fully believing we are capable or that it’s at all possible. We tend to listen to the opinions of others despite them misaligning with our own or bow to societal pressures that make us believe we should think and act a certain way. There are many reasons why we possess these types of mindsets but a success mindset can be achieved.


                      How To Create a Success Mindset

                      People with success mindsets have a particular way of perceiving things. They have positive outlooks and are able to put faith fully in their ability to succeed. With that in mind, here are a few ways that can turn a negative mindset into a successful one.

                      1. A Success Mindset Comes From a Growth Mindset

                      How does a mindset even manifest itself? It comes from the way you talk to yourself in the privacy of your own head. Realising this will go a long way towards noticing how you speak to yourself and others around you. If it’s mainly negative language you use when you talk about your goals and aspirations then this is an example of a fixed mindset.

                      A negative mindset brings with it a huge number of limiting beliefs. It creates a fixed mindset – one that can’t see beyond it’s own limitations. A growth mindset sees these limitations and looks beyond them – it finds ways to overcome obstacles and believes that this will result in success. When you think of your goal, a fixed mindset may think “what if I fail?” A growth mindset would look at the same goal and think “failures happen but that doesn’t mean I won’t be successful.”


                      There’s a lot of power in changing your perspective.

                      2. Look For The Successes

                      It’s really important to get your mind focused on positive aspects of your goal. Finding inspiration through others can be really uplifting and keep you on track with developing your success mindset; reinforcing your belief that your dreams can be achieved. Find people that you can talk with about how they achieved their goals and seek out and surround yourself with positive people. This is crucial if you’re learning to develop a positive mindset.

                      3. Eliminate Negativity

                      You can come up against a lot of negativity sometimes either through other people or within yourself. Understanding that other people’s negative opinions are created through their own fears and limiting beliefs will go a long way in sustaining your success mindset. But for a lot of us, negative chatter can come from within and these usually manifest as negative words such as can’t, won’t, shouldn’t. Sometimes, when we think of how we’re going to achieve our goals, statements in our minds come out as negative absolutes: ‘It never works out for me’ or ‘I always fail.’


                      When you notice these coming up you need to turn them around with ‘It always works out for me!’ and ‘I never fail!’ The trick is to believe it no matter what’s happened in the past. Remember that every new day is a clean slate and for you to adjust your mindset.

                      4. Create a Vision

                      Envisioning your end goal and seeing it in your mind is an important trait of a success mindset. Allowing ourselves to imagine our success creates a powerful excitement that shouldn’t be underestimated. When our brain becomes excited at the thought of achieving our goals, we become more committed, work harder towards achieving it and more likely to do whatever it takes to make it happen.

                      If this involves creating a vision board that you can look at to remind yourself every day then go for it. Small techniques like this go a long way in sustaining your success mindset and shouldn’t be dismissed.

                      An Inspirational Story…

                      For centuries experts said that running a mile in under 4 minutes was humanly impossible. On the 6th May 1954, Rodger Bannister did just that. As part of his training, Bannister relentlessly visualised the achievement, believing he could accomplish what everyone said wasn’t possible…and he did it.

                      What’s more amazing is that, as soon as Bannister achieved the 4-minute mile, more and more people also achieved it. How was this possible after so many years of no one achieving it? Because in people’s minds it was suddenly possible – once people knew that it was achievable it created a mindset of success and now, after over fifty years since Bannister did the ‘impossible’, his record has been lowered by 17 seconds – the power of the success mindset!

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