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What It’s Really Like To Live With Anxiety

What It’s Really Like To Live With Anxiety

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    People With Anxiety are Not Angry

    Anxiety has a way of making us react in a way that might seem like aggression or anger. Actually, anxiety gives us bursts of energy to deal with the stress of a situation. It can make our voice louder as we try to communicate something, or we may speak more quickly. We may use the same tone as someone who is angry, but it’s not intentional. If I’m feeling anxious about a situation, I may get short with someone even though they are not at all the source of my anxiety.

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    They are Compassionate to Other People

    Anxious people like us are very compassionate, deeply considering other people’s feelings. We have a heightened sense of connection with people that are going through difficult times. We understand what it is to have sensitivities. This allows us to relate well to anyone dealing with a crisis or tragedy in their life. As I have overcome so much due to my own anxiety, I can relate to many difficult situations that other people experience. I’m also happy to listen and give advice on how I dealt with a similar problem.

    Fear Takes Control of Their Actions

    We may leave a party quickly- or maybe even leave the country- as sometimes anxiety comes on so strongly, we need to separate ourselves from those we care about. This isn’t to punish anyone in our lives; it’s what we need for ourselves at the time. I travel a lot and sometimes my anxiety becomes overwhelming. I have gotten on a lot of planes because I was afraid of my surroundings, due to anxiety.

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    They are Not Selfish People

    While you may think someone you know with anxiety is a selfish person, that simply isn’t true. We care a lot about what people think, to the point that it can bring on anxiety. Many times we do everything we can to avoid any negativity in a situation because we simply don’t like the trouble. We often excuse ourselves from a room if we have an attack of anxiety. We often internalize our pain so we don’t bother anyone with our struggles. I wrote an article for a mother who lost her child to anxiety. He wasn’t able to get the help he needed quickly enough because he didn’t want to worry his family. In this situation, his selflessness was his own worst enemy because it prevented him from accessing the resources that could have assisted him, but in most other cases, selflessness is an admirable quality.

    Anxiety is Not a Choice- But it’s Still Manageable

    Anxiety is not something we chose to have. It is, however, manageable. There are ways that we can relax so that even in situations of heightened stress, we can remain calm and deal with it. This is the strength that it is possible for us to acquire as we learn to cope with anxiety. I used to lash out at people I traveled with because I became so anxious that there was danger in a situation that was considered safe. Through breathing techniques I was able to calm my body down, and by centering myself, I could retell the story in my mind and make it less scary. It’s a daily practice and something I do when I’m not feeling anxious also. Because of this, when something uncomfortable does happen, I am prepared.

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    They are Not Weak People

    People that have anxiety are not weak people at all; we are likely much stronger than many of the people around us realize. Our ability to cope with a sometimes debilitating illness proves we are tough. We not only deal with life’s real obstacles, we do it with a handicap of sorts. Still, we have normal jobs and have relationships while fighting through sometimes uncontrollable feelings. We are just as successful, intelligent, and lovable as those without anxiety.

    I have grown a lot from my anxiety and now that I understand how it’s affected my life, I am stronger. I have control and the experience of overcoming anxiety has allowed me to be a better version of myself.

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    Last Updated on March 13, 2019

    How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

    How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

    Have you gotten into a rut before? Or are you in a rut right now?

    You know you’re in a rut when you run out of ideas and inspiration. I personally see a rut as a productivity vacuum. It might very well be a reason why you aren’t getting results. Even as you spend more time on your work, you can’t seem to get anything constructive done. While I’m normally productive, I get into occasional ruts (especially when I’ve been working back-to-back without rest). During those times, I can spend an entire day in front of the computer and get nothing done. It can be quite frustrating.

    Over time, I have tried and found several methods that are helpful to pull me out of a rut. If you experience ruts too, whether as a working professional, a writer, a blogger, a student or other work, you will find these useful. Here are 12 of my personal tips to get out of ruts:

    1. Work on the small tasks.

    When you are in a rut, tackle it by starting small. Clear away your smaller tasks which have been piling up. Reply to your emails, organize your documents, declutter your work space, and reply to private messages.

    Whenever I finish doing that, I generate a positive momentum which I bring forward to my work.

    2. Take a break from your work desk.

    Get yourself away from your desk and go take a walk. Go to the washroom, walk around the office, go out and get a snack.

    Your mind is too bogged down and needs some airing. Sometimes I get new ideas right after I walk away from my computer.

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    3. Upgrade yourself

    Take the down time to upgrade yourself. Go to a seminar. Read up on new materials (#7). Pick up a new language. Or any of the 42 ways here to improve yourself.

    The modern computer uses different typefaces because Steve Jobs dropped in on a calligraphy class back in college. How’s that for inspiration?

    4. Talk to a friend.

    Talk to someone and get your mind off work for a while.

    Talk about anything, from casual chatting to a deep conversation about something you really care about. You will be surprised at how the short encounter can be rejuvenating in its own way.

    5. Forget about trying to be perfect.

    If you are in a rut, the last thing you want to do is step on your own toes with perfectionist tendencies.

    Just start small. Do what you can, at your own pace. Let yourself make mistakes.

    Soon, a little trickle of inspiration will come. And then it’ll build up with more trickles. Before you know it, you have a whole stream of ideas.

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    6. Paint a vision to work towards.

    If you are continuously getting in a rut with your work, maybe there’s no vision inspiring you to move forward.

    Think about why you are doing this, and what you are doing it for. What is the end vision in mind?

    Make it as vivid as possible. Make sure it’s a vision that inspires you and use that to trigger you to action.

    7. Read a book (or blog).

    The things we read are like food to our brain. If you are out of ideas, it’s time to feed your brain with great materials.

    Here’s a list of 40 books you can start off with. Stock your browser with only the feeds of high quality blogs, such as Lifehack.org, DumbLittleMan, Seth Godin’s Blog, Tim Ferris’ Blog, Zen Habits or The Personal Excellence Blog.

    Check out the best selling books; those are generally packed with great wisdom.

    8. Have a quick nap.

    If you are at home, take a quick nap for about 20-30 minutes. This clears up your mind and gives you a quick boost. Nothing quite like starting off on a fresh start after catching up on sleep.

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    9. Remember why you are doing this.

    Sometimes we lose sight of why we do what we do, and after a while we become jaded. A quick refresher on why you even started on this project will help.

    What were you thinking when you thought of doing this? Retrace your thoughts back to that moment. Recall why you are doing this. Then reconnect with your muse.

    10. Find some competition.

    Nothing quite like healthy competition to spur us forward. If you are out of ideas, then check up on what people are doing in your space.

    Colleagues at work, competitors in the industry, competitors’ products and websites, networking conventions.. you get the drill.

    11. Go exercise.

    Since you are not making headway at work, might as well spend the time shaping yourself up.

    Sometimes we work so much that we neglect our health and fitness. Go jog, swim, cycle, whichever exercise you prefer.

    As you improve your physical health, your mental health will improve, too. The different facets of ourselves are all interlinked.

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    Here’re 15 Tips to Restart the Exercise Habit (and How to Keep It).

    12. Take a good break.

    Ruts are usually signs that you have been working too long and too hard. It’s time to get a break.

    Beyond the quick tips above, arrange for a 1-day or 2-days of break from your work. Don’t check your (work) emails or do anything work-related. Relax and do your favorite activities. You will return to your work recharged and ready to start.

    Contrary to popular belief, the world will not end from taking a break from your work. In fact, you will be much more ready to make an impact after proper rest. My best ideas and inspiration always hit me whenever I’m away from my work.

    Take a look at this to learn the importance of rest: The Importance of Scheduling Downtime

    More Resources About Getting out of a Rut

    Featured photo credit: Joshua Earle via unsplash.com

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