Anxiety and fear, used interchangeably, is actually created by each and every one of us. We program into our subconscious mind, at an early age, sub plots designed to protect us from ‘perceived’ threats. The subconscious mind is built around our view or perspective of the world around us. And our perspective of the world may be distorted due to, let’s say, our upbringing, movies and television shows, or even the educational environment. These experiences ingrain notions of insecurity and instability and when we feel at risk of losing out, we begin to negatively react in such a way that can cause extreme bouts of anxiety and panic. These emotions leave a deep impactful trail, ready to be recalled at any moment. Let’s say we suffer a negative incident of some sort as a child, the emotional reaction we get from that occurrence becomes programmed into the subconscious mind and stored away for later use. Later on in life when we encounter similar circumstances, that part of the mind is triggered, igniting the long term memory. Now, if the mind was trained to react to those circumstances in such a way, it obviously is possible to reprogram. Right? There are so many variables to anxiety that it takes effort and focus, just like anything else in life. It takes courage because one thing that does help is exposure. I know that anxiety and panic are frightening and that most would probably want to avoid it. They would rather stay in their comfort zones rather than confront these mindful triggers. That’s all I wanted to do when I was deeply struggling with panic disorder. I never wanted to leave the comforts of my apartment because it was, well, where I felt safe. Whoever enjoys exposing themselves to things that cause them to come face to face with their greatest fears? Not me! At the time, I didn’t understand the mind and how it was supposed to react to certain environmental factors. Heck, I never knew what a panic attack was until I had one. I never knew that lack of nutrition and exercise, along with other outside stressors, can lead to other serious conditions. I always thought that I would be in control of my own mind. Well, to sum it up in a nutshell……I was wrong. But the great news is that I have come a long way in overcoming this struggle and YOU can to. Believe me! The mind is a powerful tool! You created this monster and you can recreate a thing of mastery and beauty. There are a couple things I want to highlight that really helped me during this journey. That’s all it is……right? It’s a journey! An amazing story on the road to building a successful and fulfilling life. And no I’m not crazy! It’s very possible, considering what you have been through. Am I right? You have struggled mightily! If anything, I would say that you have an advantage over most people because YOU HAVE STRUGGLED a great deal. Ok, back to what helped me during the early stages of dealing with panic. These are only a few things that helped me.
FILL YOUR LIFE WITH POSITIVE IMAGES AND THOUGHTS
When I was dealing with panic disorder, everything was gloom and doom. I couldn’t think positive even if I wanted to. I always stayed inside and worried about everything negative. This worry eventually lead to panic. It wasn’t until I started getting out and seeing trees and grass, walking out on the beach and experiencing the sunset, exposing myself to the pleasantries of life. You’ll find that allowing certain images to pass through your eyes has a dramatic effect on how you feel and think at that very moment. Another thing is to listen to positive music….no negative. No negative sounds that are going to induce a negative emotion. Remember all positive! What I did was I went on Amazon and bought a “Relaxing” DVD that played soothing sounds AND showed a number of oceans and landmarks. Very Relaxing!
Confidence is a major issue during and around the time of mental struggle. You are weak and feel inhumane much of the time. You feel no sense of self-worth and you’re incapable of being of any use to the people around you. This is how I felt pretty much the entire time but what got me back on track was I started to do things that I enjoyed and was good at. This helped me develop a sense of self-worth and confidence. I have also heard certain experts say that the ones who struggle with mental disorders tend to have a knack for being creative. Their very good at channeling that inner energy into something amazing, whether it be painting, building a sculpture, or writing a novel.
We all want to believe that our lives mean something. I mean, it’s just natural to think that way! Right? This area deals mainly with feelings of self-worth. It kind of goes hand in hand with confidence; the only difference is you begin to pursue passions and desires. When panic and anxiety are a regular chore, you may begin to call into question your purpose. But let me just say, think of the bigger picture and try to find understanding and perspective here. I began watching videos and listening to audio tapes on my area of interests. The effect that it had on my self-worth, knowing that I had goals and was moving toward those goals. This had an amazing impact on my confidence and sense of purpose.
Whatever you’re struggling with, whatever you do, keep moving forward. This is important! Baby steps if you have to. Any one element will not correct the issue but a collective effort will give you a renewing hope.