Anxiety is simply fear talking directly to your entire body. It occurs when we worry about the future, rather than live in the moment. Mindfulness is the antidote to anxious feelings. It is not an instant solution to your symptoms, rather a gradual way of processing life differently.
Anxiety manifests in many ways, depending upon how you process life. For me, anxiety rears its ugly head in the middle of the night, either at 1am or 3am. I awaken feeling hot and nauseous, and this quickly translates into the urge to vomit. Some people experience a racing heart, sweating, clammy hands and lose bowels. Others hyperventilate, have increased blood pressure, feelings of apprehension or dread, difficulty concentrating and feel restless. All I know is it is a nightmare that is custom designed for you.
I have experienced anxiety and panic attacks on three major occasions in my life- before deciding to leave my husband; after the death of my father, and when I started dating again. The common theme amongst each occasion was the fear of the unknown as a result of an ending or a new beginning.
Many people believe there is a stigma surrounding anxiety, however, I believe that in a fast paced modern society where we have a million things to do, and less and less time to nourish our body, mind and soul, that it is not a “diagnosis” more, a common feeling and way that our bodies are reacting to the situation we put it in. I believe that rather than be ashamed or hide it, we should learn to embrace our anxious feelings and get to know them deeply, because no one can understand them like you can. It is your body trying to send you a message. It is trying to be kind to you by sending an alarm that something is not right and is at odds with your core feelings, values and desires. Being anxious is not a permanent state of mind, unless you feed those anxieties, label yourself as “this is the way I am” and ignore the signals. You have the power to work with your anxious feelings and learn to understand their core, and how to minimise them. If you are overwhelmed by the thought of doing this by yourself, then please see your doctor or seek professional assistance from a therapist.
Personally I have learned the power of working with this emotion, and channeling it into art and writing. Others learn to exercise, dance with music or find some other outlet. I use essential oils to honour and work with my anxious feelings.
What you must be careful about is using drugs or alcohol to mask the symptoms of anxiety. Don’t cover them up. Acknowledge and work with the feelings because this is the key to your emotional freedom.
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