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How to Get Over Family Feuds that lead to Stress, Anxiety and Depression

How to Get Over Family Feuds that lead to Stress, Anxiety and Depression

Have you ever had an argument with a family member so intense that you just start to boil inside? The only thing left is for steam to blow through your ears and nostrils profusely. I hate it when they do that!

The aggravation from family can really mess up your psyche. How can you feel so connected to someone but have them crush your dreams, hopes and aspirations in a split second?

It happens to the best of us.

I remember getting offered a placement for University abroad at the age of 16 and asking my grandmother with a thriving business for help. Now, 7 years later… I did NOT go to that University. Why? Take a wild guess. I bawled for days feeling crushed. I remember I wasn’t a religious person at that time but waited for everyone to leave the house and began screaming my throat out to God. All I wanted was for Him to hear me. I told myself I wouldn’t stop screaming until he heard me. Did God say anything to me in that time? Absolutely NOT.

Imagine you think you have this one shot to go get a better life. You ask the one person you think could help you and they say no. The rejection was real. I battled within to come to terms with this situation. Anxiety attacks came crashing in. I gave my mom an attitude on autopilot for weeks. The anger bubbled within me.

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Flash forward to now.

Everyday I meditate to keep myself grounded and my energies pure. I’ve worked at this for years after I realized that it’s the only thing that helps because I’ve been aggressive all my life. Why am I telling you this? Because even with so much practice, you’d think I have mastered this. I have… I do manifest everything I absolutely want but just one simple thing from my mom, grandmother or my boyfriend can cut me off my game. It could possibly lead me to depression. That’s how bad it could get. Why? Because they’re the closest ones to me. Don’t get annoyed. The story comes together, I promise.

They say and do the sweetest stuff sometimes but the harshest as well. Sometimes it will kick you off your game so much that you wonder if they really do love you. They do… It’s just that what you find important, they won’t. What aggravates you is soothing to them..sometimes. Family can build you too. So don’t feel I’m against loving them because I’m not.

I don’t care who you are or where you live…I stick to this belief wholeheartedly: The people you love impact you the most to the point you can hurt for a lifetime over something they said or did.

Prevention is better than cure.

If you want me to sugarcoat this… Do me a favor and stop reading.
If you want the truth, here goes.

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Sometimes you have to tune out the people you love. Just sometimes. Remember, balance is everything in life. Balance along with faith. You are more than enough with where you are and what you do. You have to figure out a way to start believing that. When someone doesn’t align that much with the desires you have, tune them out CONCERNING that specific subject. Seek the truth by becoming more aware. Become a little more open minded and try new things that may lead you to the answers you seek.

People you love will try to suppress the things you believe in just because they don’t believe it. You learn to tune people out by ignoring their ignorance and negativity through practice. Think about something you enjoy while they speak to you. Try remembering the lyrics to your favorite song. Picture that person you have a crush on, exercise, take a trip. Distract yourself from the fact that they’ve become a nuisance. Channel your energy somewhere else. Heck, I don’t care… Just make sure that you become immune to the foolishness. You know yourself better than I do. Find  a way!

Who are you to suppress someone’s dreams? Better yet, who are you to suppress the dreams you have? Pursuing things you love will give you life so why try to kill it before giving it a fair chance?

The story about not going to the University I got into is now a pain point leaning towards understanding. How so?

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Values and Differences

Well, my grandmother didn’t help because she didn’t believe in education. She gained a great amount of wealth without being trained. Why would she spend hundreds of thousands of her profits on my education? It wasn’t necessary for her so she didn’t see it necessary for me. Never be that ignorant. I however don’t blame her looking back at it. I didn’t enjoy life at that moment because I thought God couldn’t hear me and my ONE chance got blown away. Boy, was I WRONG!

I now think of it as God having a bigger and better plan for me. I stayed in the country and struggled for a bit. Through struggling, you learn the most. What does someone learn from trying one simple thing and succeeding the first time? So, as hard as it was, I came to terms with the fact that I had gained a lot of experience and wisdom going through depression and heartache born from trying to find where I belonged. I found it though. Why? Because I persisted in finding the truth.

Opportunities are neverending

You don’t just get one chance in life. Chances come over and over and over. When you miss one, you don’t really miss it. You align yourself for something grander, something more exciting.
Stop walking around and saying your family didn’t give you the opportunity to do whatever they stopped you from doing. There’s always a loophole.

I did go to College but ended up dropping out. Why? On my own behalf I didn’t believe enough in the system. Imagine if I had gotten the money from my grandma, went overseas, dropped out and went back without a degree she would be investing in me. She would have been furious. Look at that… It worked out for me.

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Don’t force it

Sometimes we try to force things that really aren’t for us too but that’s a whole other story by itself. Save yourself the hassle and trust your journey. The impact family has on you can either crush your spirit or build it. What do you decide?
Are you going to be depressed for the rest of your life because they don’t have the same vision as you? Or are you going to tune them out and seek the truth on who you really want to be? If you need help deciding, this should help you. You can download it here if you need it for your personal collection; it has highlights and is more relatable.

Have an open mind, be hungry for growth and expect new opportunities every day.

Don’t be scared to shoot me a message of what you’re going through with a loved one/family member.

Change is possible so just keep trying. Big hugs <3

Featured photo credit: pixabay via pixabay.com

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Last Updated on March 30, 2020

What Does Self-Conscious Mean? (And How to Stop Being It)

What Does Self-Conscious Mean? (And How to Stop Being It)

Have you ever walked into a room and felt like your nerves simply couldn’t handle it? Your heart beats fast, you start to sweat, and you feel like all eyes are on you (even if they’re really not). This is just one of the many ways that being self-conscious can rear its ugly head.

You may not even realize you’re self-conscious, and you may be wondering, “What does self-conscious mean?” That’s a good place to start.

This article will define self-consciousness, show how practically everyone has faced it at one point or another, and give you tips to avoid it.

What Does Self-Conscious Mean?

According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, self-conscious is defined as “conscious of one’s own acts or states as belonging to or originating in oneself.”[1]

Not so bad, right? There’s another definition, though — one that speaks more to what you’re going through: “feeling uncomfortably conscious of oneself as an object of the observation of others.” For those of us who regularly deal with extreme self-consciousness, that second definition sounds about right.

There are many different ways self-consciousness can spring up. You may feel self-conscious around people you know, like your family members or closest friends. You may feel self-conscious at work, even though you spend hours every week around your co-workers. Or you may feel self-conscious when out in public and surrounded by strangers. However, you probably don’t feel self-conscious when you’re home alone.

How to Stop Being Too Self-Conscious

When you’re in the throes of self-consciousness, it’s nearly impossible to remember how to stop feeling that way. That’s why it’s so important to prepare ahead of time, when you’re feeling ready to tackle the problem instead of succumbing to it.

Here are a variety of ways to feel better about yourself and stop thinking about how others see you.

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1. Ask Yourself, “So What?”

One way to banish negative, self-conscious thoughts is to do just that: banish them.

The next time you walk into a room and feel your face getting red, think to yourself, “So what?” How much does it really matter if people don’t like how you look or act? What’s the worst that could happen?

Most of the time, you’ll find that you don’t have a good answer to this question. Then, you can immediately start assigning such thoughts less importance. With self-awareness, you can acknowledge that your negative thoughts are present and realize that you don’t agree with them.[2] They’re just thoughts, after all.

2. Be Honest

A lie that self-consciousness might tell is that there’s one way to act or feel. Honestly, though, everyone else is just figuring life out as well. There isn’t a preferred way to show up to an event, gathering, or public place. What you can do is be honest with your feelings and thoughts.[3]

If you feel offended by something someone says, you don’t have to smile to be polite or laugh to fit in with the crowd. Instead, you can politely say why you disagree or excuse yourself and find a group of people who you relate to better. If you’re nervous, don’t overcompensate by trying to look relaxed and casual — it’ll be obvious you’re putting on a front. Instead, nothing is more endearing than saying, “I’m a little nervous!” to a room of people who probably feel the exact same way.

On the same note, if you don’t understand why someone wants you to do something, question it. You can do this at work, at home, or even with people you don’t know well. Nobody should force you to do something you don’t want to do.

Also, even if you’re willing to do what’s asked of you, there’s nothing wrong with asking for more clarification. People will realize that you’re not a person to be bossed around.

3. Understand Why You’re Struggling at Work

Being self-conscious at work can get in the way of your daily responsibilities, your relationships with co-workers, and even your career as a whole. If you’re facing some sort of conflict but you’re too nervous to speak up, you may be at the whim of what happens to you instead of taking some control.

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If you’re usually confident at work, you may be wondering where this new self-consciousness is coming from. It’s possible that you’re dealing with burnout.[4] Common signs are anxiety, fatigue and distraction, all of which can leave you feeling under-confident.

4. Succeed at Something

When you create success in your life, it’s easier to feel confident[5] and less self-conscious. If you feel self-conscious at work, finish the project that’s been looming over your head. If you feel self-conscious in the gym, complete an advanced workout class.

Exposing yourself to what you’re scared of and then succeeding at it in some way (even just by finishing it) can do wonders for your self-esteem. The more confidence you build, the more likely you are to have more success in the future, which will create a cycle of confidence-building.

5. Treat All of You — Not Just Your Self-Consciousness

Trying to solve your self-consciousness alone may not treat the root of the problem. Instead, take a well-rounded approach to lower your self-consciousness and build confidence in areas where you may struggle.

Even professional counselors are embracing this holistic type of treatment[6] because they feel that the health of the mind and body are inextricably linked. This approach combines physical, spiritual, and psychological components. Common activities and treatments include meditation, yoga, massage, and healthy changes to diet and exercise.

If much of this is new to you, it will pay to give it a try. You never know how it will impact you.

If you’re feeling self-conscious about how your body looks, a massage that makes you feel great could boost your confidence. If you try a new workout, you could have something exciting to talk about the next time you’re in a group setting.

Putting yourself in a new situation and learning that you can get through it with grace can give you the confidence to get through all sorts of events and nerve-wracking moments.

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6. Make the Changes That Are Within Your Control

Let’s say you walk into a room and you’re self-conscious about how you look. However, you may have put a lot of time and effort into your outfit. Even though it may stand out, this is how you have chosen to express yourself.

You have to work on your internal confidence, not your external appearance. There’s nothing to change other than your outlook.

On the other hand, maybe there’s something that you don’t like about yourself that you can change. For example, maybe you hate how a birthmark on your face looks or have varicose veins that you think are unsightly. If you can do something about these things, do it! There’s nothing wrong with changing your appearance (or skills, education, etc.) if it’s going to make you more confident.

You don’t have to accept your current situation for acceptance’s sake. There’s no award for putting up with something you hate. Confidence is also required to make changes that are scary, even if they’re for the better. Plus, it may be an easier fix than you thought. For example, treating varicose veins doesn’t have to involve surgery — sometimes simple compression stockings will take care of the problem.[7]

7. Realize That Everyone Has Awkward Moments

Everyone has said something awkward to someone else and lived to tell the tale. We’ve all forgotten somebody’s name or said, “You too!” when the concession stand girl says to enjoy our movie. Not only are these things uber-common, but they’re not nearly as embarrassing as you feel they are.

Think about how you react when someone else does something awkward. Do you think, “Wow, that person’s such a loser!” or do you think, “What a relief, I’m not the only one who does that.” Chances are good that’s the same reaction others have to you when you stumble.

Remember, self-consciousness is a state of mind that you have control over. You don’t have to feel this way. Do what you need to in order to build your confidence, put your self-consciousness in perspective, and start exercising your “I feel awesome about myself” muscle. It’ll get easier with time.

When Is Being Self-Conscious a Good Thing?

Self-consciousness can sometimes be a good thing[8], but you have to take the awkwardness and nerves out of it.

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In this case, “self-aware” is a much better term. Knowing how you come off to people is an excellent trait; you’ll be able to read a room and understand how what you do and say affects others. These are fantastic skills for people work and personal relationships.

Self-awareness helps you dress appropriately for the occasion, tells you that you’re talking too loud or not loud enough, and guides a conversation so you don’t offend or bore anyone.

It’s not about being someone you’re not — that can actually have adverse effects, just like self-consciousness. Instead, it’s about turning up certain aspects of yourself to perform well in the situation.

Final Thoughts

When you’re self-conscious, you’re constantly battling with yourself in an effort to control how other people view you. You try to change yourself to suit what you think other people want to see.

The truth, though, is that you can’t actually control how other people view you — and you may not even be correct about how they view you in the first place.

Being confident doesn’t happen overnight. Instead, it happens in small steps as you slowly build your confidence and say “no” to your self-consciousness. It also requires accepting that you’re going to feel self-conscious sometimes, and that’s okay.

Sometimes worrying that there is a problem can be more stressful than the problem itself. Feeling bad for feeling self-conscious can be more troublesome than simply feeling it and getting on with the day.

Forgive yourself for being human and make the small changes that will lead to better confidence in the future.

More Tips for Improving Your Self-Esteem

Featured photo credit: Cata via unsplash.com

Reference

[1] Merriam-Webster: Self-conscious
[2] Bustle: 7 Tips On How To Stop Feeling Self-Conscious
[3] Marc and Angel: 10 Things to Remember When You Feel Unsure of Yourself
[4] Bostitch: How to Protect Small Businesses From Burnout
[5] Psychology Today: Self-conscious? Get Over It
[6] Wake Forest University: Embracing Holistic Medicine
[7] Center for Vein Restoration: What Causes Venous Ulcers, and How Are They Treated?
[8] Scientific American: The Pros and Cons of Being Self-Aware

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