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Anxiety… I need some support.

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  • #68719
    Anonymous
    Inactive

    Hi.
    Just set up a membership on this site today.
    I’ve been suffering from anxiety, depression, fatigue and other issues for a while now.

    I make YouTube videos over at http://www.youtube.com/stefanalexlay and have a blog: http://stefanalexlay.wordpress.com/

    I feel like I’ve hit Rock Bottom, again.
    I quit my job last week (handed in notice, but still) because my anxiety was too high and I was so miserable most of the time.
    I feel so disconnected to life and everything around me. I feel like I have nobody to turn to, who can actually help.
    Over the years, I’ve tried so hard. And I’ve tried not trying – not caring.
    I’ve lost friends, a relationship became a complete mess, and now I feel like I’m a burden to my parents – Mum, in particular. (I rarely see my Dad – parents are divorced, and he’s always busy with work).

    I have a fantastic girlfriend, the most beautiful dog (a cocker spaniel), but it seems like nothing can outweigh the horror I face every day because of my anxiety. It’s like things have never been so bad. I struggle to type now, and when I read back sentences usually have to edit, or else I realise that I missed out words. I worry I’m losing my mind and becoming stupid, or suffering from memory loss. And, now I have to try and find a job that I can cope with. I want to work part time so I can learn to have fun and relax again, but life doesn’t seem to permit this. Stress always finds me, and I feel like I need a fresh beginning.

    I know you’re all here because you’re going through some things too, but I’d really appreciate some words of reassurance. I don’t need to be told ‘It’ll be okay’ because I’ve heard it a hundred times (yet to see the evidence to back it up). I just want a little bit of advice. I see a counselor every few weeks and she’s really good. I’ve realised that nutrition will never save me and be able to heal my anxiety (I took the acne drug, Accutane, and believe that started all this – I have some physical things to deal with, mainly the chronic fatigue). I’m getting away from what must have been an eating disorder (I wanted to eat healthy and started to fear certain foods, in the sense that I’d avoid having a cookie if offered one at work, rather than meaning having nightmares about possessed sausages).

    I just feel that my life is going nowhere and I’ve lost motivation to try anymore. I just feel so beaten up by life and want to start believing again. Does anyone have any resources they’d recommend, like blog articles? I’ve read so many books and spent so much time trying to get around this, but it’s having a bold impact on my life and I’m desperate to get myself out of this mess. I don’t even know if it’s possible to overcome anxiety. I can’t imagine not having it now. It’s been years and years.

    Thank you, and sorry if I messed up what I was saying. Too tired to read back and check.

    #68730
    Kevin venkatesh
    Participant

    Hey there stefan,

    First off, id just like to say that i totally understand how you feel. For me i believe that ive always had anxiety, but what really triggered it and made it worse was the drug propecia. Anyway it started with a panic attack that i never came down from. Everything seemed off and weird and pointless. Like i was in a dream. It was the scariest thing ive ever experienced. Then the instrusive thoughts came. Then the physical symptoms. Headaches, dizzyness, chills, panic attacks…you name it.

    I also had an enormous fear of losing my mind or having bipolar or chronic depression. I used to have severe health anxiety, always believing that there was some serious thing wrong with me. Only to find out im perfectly healthy. Now, i still have a lot of physical symptoms, but my fear of them is almost completely gone. My depression is gone, my thoughts dont scare me, and i focus on other things in my life.

    Now i understand that outside stresses can bother you an make anxiety a lot worse. But its your reaction to those strsses that creates anxiety. When you see yourself reacting badly to stress, just take a step back and be mindful that this is life. Its always stressful and hard but if its something you cant control, dont stress it. Thats a HUGE part of what helped me. DO NOT try to control what is uncontrollable.

    Okay, so the one thing that helped me get to this place…and is still helping me is a man named Paul David. His website is called anxietynomore.com look it up and trust me when i say he is a lifesaver. You dont have to pay anything (unless you want to read his book, which i say is worth it. I actually bought the anxietynomore app which includes the book) Paul suffered for 10 years before e realized how to help himself. The answer is acceptance. It sounded stupid to me. I didnt understand it at first. Basically, anxiety feeds off of fear. If you are constantly inside your mind and analyzing how you feel, you will feel disconnected and highly anxious. Depression is common because you spend so much time stressing on how yo feel that your mind gets tired and emotions shut off. Its just a tired mind. Paul describes it like this:

    If you break your leg, are you gonna stress and worry about how your leg is broken and how you cant do anything? Or are you gonna live with it and let it heal. Thats what pauls message is. You MUST let everything be there. Fighting this will only dig the hole deeper. Trust me, i did this for 2 months before i found paul. And even then it took me another 2 months for it to truly sink in. But please dont be discouraged on how long it might take for yo to recover. The aim is to no longer care about anxiety. Once that happens, anxiety will have no reason to be there and wil leave by itself. Youll start finding days where you wont even have a thought about how you feel. Those days will turn to weeks. There will be ups and downs and believe me when i say i thought that i had beaten anxiety only to have it hit with full force once again. But then i remembered pauls advice and decided to not let it take over my life.

    Its up to you stefan. Self pity and ruminating about whats wrong in your life is not the way to do this. I cant stress enough how important positivity is. If you dont feel positive, dont get stressed about that. The point here is to be ok with however you feel.

    Lastly, on pauls website youll see a tab at the top that says blog. That blog is EXTREMELY helpful. There are many other people who are suffering just like you and all they do is support each other. Its extremely inspiring. Its pauls blog but just click on the comments on his most recent post and start commenting if youd like, people are very friendly. Youll see me on there from time to time.

    Remember. Its all upto you. This is YOUR life. And YOUR story. Dont let anything control it. Realize that there is a reality as well as a percieved reality. Always know the difference and stress will find you no more. It will take time but its all a journey and you will find moments that will make life worth it. I promise you. If you need anything else dont hesistate to message me or find me on facebook. Just look up kevin venkatesh. I wish you the best man

    #68732
    Kevin venkatesh
    Participant

    Also, i really want to point out that avoidance of anything is not going to help at all and is counterproductive. Im still guilty of avoidance as i avoid talking to people i want to talk to. But everything else (my job,school etc…) i do it anyway. I feel the anxiety and do it anyway. Its the only way the desensitize from it. Quitting your job because of anxiety is avoidance. And i can understand if you need some breathing room now. But its something you should be mindful of never doing. If you quit a job because you hate it, thats fine but if its because of anxiety, thats avoidance and thats what contributes to the cycle.

    #68733
    Fritz
    Participant

    Thanks to both of you for sharing. I have also dealt with anxiety for many years-and i think that seeing your counsellor is a great step forward already. I have always wished that i could just let certain things slide, and be a relaxed and person who can just enjoy life. Exercise, music, and dancing (sometimes by myself 😉 really tends to help me when i’m feeling anxious or stressed, or disconnected. But I would say one of the most important things I have found helpful, is finding my passions in life-and just going after them.

    Have you considered volunteering, or working for a cause that you feel really passionate about? Helping other people, or being a part of a group of people either working towards a goal, or just learning something new that you may be interested in? I know motivation can be a tricky thing to overcome with anxiety/depression-i completely understand. But I feel like recognizing my passions in life, has really helped me give focus to the outside world, i find that my anxiety tends to keep me in my own mind and space, , and has helped me to reconnect with other people. Start out small with something you feel comfortable with, and allow yourself to take your time and be patient with yourself. Thank you, to the commentor above, for talking about personal acceptance-it is truly so important.The books and blogs and such can be really great tools too, check out “The Tao of Pooh” byBen Hoff. But getting out there, and finding your passions, whatever they are will along the way help with the motivation.

    All the best to you 🙂

    #68734
    Anne
    Participant

    Hi Stephen

    I’ve been exactly where you are. Are you taking anything for the depression and anxiety? If not, go to your doctor. I won’t tell you that you’ll be okay, because you won’t for a long time. But it’s okay to be “not okay” for a while, because you’re ill.

    Here’s my favourite link

    http://hyperboleandahalf.blogspot.co.uk/2013/05/depression-part-two.html

    #68752
    Helen
    Participant

    Hey Stefan! I totally know how you’re feeling. I’ve been through a lot this year. Before April this year, I’ve been to a therapist for almost two years and was prescribed anti depressants for anxiety and depression.
    And then I felt better so I didn’t go anymore. Well, I lowered my medication, didn’t go off it though. And my anxiety and depression came back pretty badly. Then last week I went to see my therapist for the first time in months. And she said: well, then you’ll have to increase your medication again. And I did. And after just 10 days I already feel better.
    You know, anti depressants are not a miracle thing. It takes hard work and years of therapy to get better. But the medication can change the chemistry in your brain to a point where you’re not suffering and agonizing because of your issues.
    I would highly recommend you to see a doctor or therapist and get help. It’s ok not to be ok! We’re all human, we all have flaws. And depression and anxiety are illnesses. And there’s treatment for them – not the best yet – but there are treatments.

    Good luck to you and all the best!
    xx

    #68765
    Spidey
    Participant

    Stefan,

    You haven’t hit rock bottom. Have a shelter over your head? Have food in front of you? Have clothes? Have a bed? Mate, a lot of people in this world don’t even have anything like this. One thing I’d strongly suggest you doing (which btw I’ve started doing and I’ve been feeling eons better) is writing gratitude lists. Every day for the next week write a list of what you are thankful and grateful for. From the smallest things in life, to the simplest, to the most complex. I guarantee you that by doing this and reflecting on these lists you will begin to feel much better.

    In terms of your anxiety, I can strongly say that it is possible to overcome it. Coming from someone who suffered stuttering over my early school years and developed anxiety when speaking up in front of people, I have managed to down-grade my anxiety to be very minimal now. I even catch myself in moments where I am fluent, and can introduce myself fully without a thought of doubt. This is tricky, but it requires a lot of discipline to overcome. And it starts off training your subconscious mind. It’s hard to understand and explain, but one of the bigger things I’ve did was just not think about it. When I would focus my mind on my anxiety, my fears, my stresses, my body would adapt accordingly and before I knew it, I would be in full anxiety mode, and it sucks. What I did, however, was that I acknowledged my anxiety attack happen one time, and I literally had an out of body experience where I looked down on myself in the scenario I was in, and realized my triggers. By doing so, I was able to catch that transition point between calm and tranquil, to heightened/alert/anxiety state. In that transition point, it is there where you need to harness your physiology and calm your body. But you can’t avoid scenarios that will trigger anxiety. To overcome it you need to expose yourself to these scenarios and try to adapt every time. It is scary, I know, I’ve been there, but it is possible.

    Stefan, I literally made this account in response this thread because I want to help you to overcome this scenario. I couldn’t ignore reading your opening post knowing someone is going through this and here I am not acting to help out, especially being in this same scenario at one point.

    I wish you all the best, and if you want to keep in touch message me, and I’d be more than happy to help you overcome this.

    Cheers,

    Brett.

    #68797
    Anonymous
    Inactive

    On all my replies, I’d pressed quote.
    None of my replies have showed up here…
    Can someone above tell me that you got a reply?
    And is there a better way to reply? Would I just do it without pressing quote?

    Thanks

    #68822
    Spidey
    Participant

    Reply button doesn’t work. Tried it in a previous thread and no go.

    If you want to specifically reply to someone Stefan, try “@________” before you write a paragraph or two. So we know who you’re directing your post to.

    #68823
    Anonymous
    Inactive

    Did you get my reply direct @Brett ?

    #68825
    Spidey
    Participant

    I did not, my tag is @spidey . I’m not quite sure how the format of this forum still works as I am use to other ones.

    If you want to specifically reply to me in response to my post just acknowledge me with a “To Brett” or “To Spidey” in this thread, or if you can send my profile a personal message or however. Using the “reply” button and “quote” button doesn’t seem to work properly.

    #68826
    Kirsten
    Participant

    Hi Stefan,

    Are you doing any cbt? I have social anxiety disorder and this has really helped me a lot. I wish I started sooner, as it really helps you see how irrational your thoughts are and has eased my anxiety so much. Please try it out :). I use a book and audio, and do at least 5 minutes everyday (you start to want to do it). It’s very helpful 🙂

    #68842
    Anonymous
    Inactive

    Hi Kristen..

    Yeah, I am. I find it to be helpful (to a limit) as well.

    #68948
    Spidey
    Participant

    Stefan,

    Any progress since you posted this? Let us know keep us updated, we’d like to help!

    All the best to you and my prayers reach out to you,

    Spidey.

    #69048
    Anonymous
    Inactive

    Yo @Spidey

    Things have been alright thank you.
    Not amazing, but not bad.
    It goes in cycles. Just being realistic – I’ll probably get really depressed again soon.

    Being off work temporarily helps, but I still get tired and have to just accept that.
    And I get a little light headed and feel anxious all at once.
    I picked up some Kalms (herbal) tablets so hopefully they will help a little.
    Whilst working, it was very difficult at times to soldier on and make it through each day.

    I went to bed at around 1am last night though, so it’s partly my fault I’m extra tired today.
    Think I’ll take a little nap.
    Had a productive day doing music things yesterday though. Wrote a positive blog last night (my blog was linked on my initial post here).
    Was planning to record some vocals for a track today, but not really feeling it. I’ll aim to do it tomorrow.

    For now, trying to remember to get my diary out regularly and practice using CBT.
    When I have my better days, I’m more grateful because I know what it’s like to be at the other end of the spectrum.

    Any further advice for when I have days where I feel a bit slack about doing anything?
    Go to bed earlier the night before? Allow myself to have a day of chilling?
    I have a little internal battle with myself about becoming amazingly successful and then wanting to just take it easy.
    I have a job interview on Friday for a part-time job, so I’m hoping to nail that.
    It’s 24 hours a week, which would suit me well.
    I don’t want to work full time if I can avoid it.
    I need time to recover from my adrenal burnout.

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