‘Hi. My name is Laura Turner, and I have anxiety’
Hope you’ve all had a fantastic Easter weekend so far! Can I get a ‘BOOOOOO’ about going back to work tomorrow…?
As you all know, I love hearing from other women who want to write for my blog. Today I’d like to welcome my good friend Laura to SLA. Laura is a wedding and event manager, and we first met when we started working together in a bar a few years ago. We’re now gym partners and close friends.
We had talked about anxiety together before, but it was only recently (when we started going to the same gym) that we really opened up about how we felt. When she said she would write about anxiety for SLA, I was thrilled. An initial reason I started blogging in the first place was to raise more awareness around anxiety and to encourage women to be comfortable and confident in their own skin, and to empower others to feel the same. When she sent me her draft and I had a read through, it was like she could see into my head.
Don’t forget to get in touch with me via the comment section or my instagram if you found this blog post helpful. I’ve been told she’ll be back for more, but in the meantime, here’s Laura’s introduction into her life with anxiety.
I’m a 20 something outgoing, bubbly, kind, wedding and event manager.
This is actually a lie. I am 20 something, and I am a wedding and event manager…and although I may come across in my work place as outgoing, bubbly and kind, inside a hurricane of panic, upset and unnecessary thinking is erupting. I try to be as kind as possible everyday, but most of the time I am trying to politely escape a meeting or viewing.
I don’t know why, but for me I either feel like hiding this fact as my deepest darkest secret, or telling every Tom, Dick and Harry about my condition.
This of course depends on what type of day I am having, how I have woken up in the morning, and what sort of day I am in for.
Today is a good day – I managed to get up in a happy-go-lucky mood. I showered, got dressed and put my make up on. I opened the front door and stepped outside.
This may not seem like a lot to some people, however for me this is the biggest step.
Making it out the front door does not always mean guaranteed success over anxiety. There have been many days where I have got all the way out the front door, into my car, driven to the gym and parked up outside. Taken my key out of the ignition and opened the door to get out… then, in what seems like a nano second, panic sets in. I close the door, start the car and drive back home.
This is a regular occurrence for me. I could never fully explain anxiety, as I think it effects us all in different ways. However, what I will explain to you is my experiences and how it effects me.
Sometimes I can gage the level of anxiety from the moment I wake up. I feel nervous, and my brain starts creating scenarios which, unless the world was hit by the plague, are all highly unlikely to happen.
I have never really learnt to deal with anxiety – more how to push it out the way and distract myself.
One of the ways I have found which can help, is to talk myself down. Don’t worry I have not gone insane – this is more about snapping myself out of the situation at hand, and trying to reason with myself. I find this helps me to calm down enough that I can make a decision about whether I can go to the gym, into town, to the post office or food shopping.
I have been given pills from the doctor, which to his defence calmed me down nicely… but they also made me not give a shit about anything. They were literally mind numbing pills that stop me thinking. They were great for a short term solution, and they helped me gain some much needed sleep. However, I did not sign up to become a vegetable who doesn’t care about life. I am stronger than that – I will beat this or learn to live with it.
So I have told myself that I need to take better care of my body in the bid to either fight or live along side anxiety.
Firstly, I am trying to stick to 3 gym sessions a week: living a healthy active life style will not only help my mental state, but also how I look at myself. Feeling a little tubby around the edges only fuels the anxiety more and in the fight to keeping.
Secondly, I’m looking after my diet: I work long shifts with unsociable hours, which makes it very hard to stick to anything healthy. Especially when I work around cake and event food! To stop sugar spikes (and staying up late trying to burn off the energy) I am preparing meals for the day along with snacks. This of course doesn’t always go to plan, and I just need to make healthier choices to keep me going.
And finally, telling myself 3 positive things each morning: You will be pleasantly surprised how this makes you feel for the day.
Taking small steps in the right direction is far better than not taking a step at all!
What do you find helps you with your anxiety? Please leave a comment, I’d love to hear your experiences and recommendations!