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    Zandile Dlamini

    Well, I don’t even know where to start. But I guess I’ll start here…

    I’m a 25 year old women, turning 26 this year. Just a few years ago I used to be full of life, I was driven and had confidence. Over the years, that has changed. The only way that I can explain it, is the other day I read something, where someone had written “When did the future switch from a promise to a threat” and that completely summarises my life. I’m completely afraid right now. I am anxious all of the time and I hate it.

    I’m anxious about my financial future. I’ve even developed a debilitating fear of driving – yes driving. I literally begin to get anxiety attacks at the thought of having to go somewhere. It’s so bad that I find myself making excuses to not see my friends just so I won’t have to drive. I’ve been wanting to start a clothing boutique, I’m from South Africa and I’m supposed to go to Thailand to go shop for clothes and I haven’t even spoken to my agent yet, I guess I’m afraid of the clothing boutique failing. I hardly go out any more because I just never feel good enough about myself. It’s like if I could find a dark room to lock myself into, just to shut the world out, I would. I love my boyfriend to bits but I’m afraid that he’ll cheat on me, sometimes I’m afraid he’ll want to leave me for someone more confident, I’m afraid I’ll push him away. I’ve become so image and body conscious it’s scary.

    I’m afraid because I want to turn my life around but I don’t know how to do it on my own. I’m so tired of crying, feeling despair and hurting. I can’t remember the last time I smiled, a real smile – the kind of smile that lights up your soul. Instead I suffer from terrible insomnia, I’m always tired and always feel like I’m on the verge of a mental and emotional breakdown. Sometimes I’ll wake up and my heart will just be beating ridiculously fast.

    I literally feel paralysed by anxiety and fear.

    I am a dreamer, I know that I have so much to offer the world but I just wish that I could stop getting into my own way. But right now I don’t how. Bad habits have become a safety net for me. I’m always willing to help others out. I love giving back. I love seeing other people happy. Why can’t I make myself happy?

    I just need someone who will understand, who can help me and walk me through what to do. I feel so helpless and afraid.


    Hi Zandile

    As I read your post, one soul came into my mind, who can assist you. Susan Jeffers. If you can get her book, “feel the fear and do it anyway”, you might find it very useful not only for current circumstances but for future as well.

    If I were you, I would only focus on myself. Forget about helping others or giving to others for the moment. Until your battery is fully charged with positive emotions, you wont be able to charge others adequately. You will keep hitting roadblocks and making yourself less happy.

    Just learn to provide love and care to your inner being. Life will unfold beautifully for you as my inner self tells me that.

    Lots of positive energy coming your way. You are worth it:)


    Zandile Dlamini

    Thank you so much for the response Jasmine. I can’t even begin to explain how much it means.

    It’s feels good having a place to share with people. Wish I had found this site sooner.

    I will buy that book today.

    Right now I am willing to do as much as I can to get back to myself.

    Thank you


    Hey Zandile,

    Anxiety sucks, and you certainly sound like you have a lot to deal with right now. I had anxiety attacks a few years ago, and sometimes I still get afraid, though not as bad as I was. When I get to feeling that way, I try to focus on taking care of myself — good food, physical exercise, a regular sleep pattern, time spent doing things I enjoy, and meditation. It’s not a cure-all, but everything gets that much harder when you don’t take care of the basics, you know?

    Please don’t feel like you’re doing something wrong because you’re feeling this way. You just have a lot on your plate, and it’s difficult to deal with it all. That happens to a lot of people, just read some of the other posts on this forum. People are in pain, for all kinds of reasons. But people can also build themselves back up, step by step, even when they feel so, so bad.

    So take it easy on yourself — you’re having a tough time. Do things that help you, do things that are a little scary when you feel up to them, and understand that these feelings come and go. If you feel really horrible today, tomorrow will probably be a little better. If you feel really good today, maybe tomorrow will be harder. But if you keep building, and believe in yourself, things will get better and you can pursue your dreams.

    I wish you only good days. Good luck.

    Zandile Dlamini

    Hi Will,

    Thank you for your response.

    I am happy to see that you were able to get through whatever you were dealing with.It gives me hope that I can too, knowing that you’re not just giving empty advice but you’ve also walked through the fire.

    I will try to take it a day at a time. I hope and pray that a few weeks, or even months from now, I’ll have some positive feedback to share.

    But until then, thank you for your kind and inspiring words.


    Hi Zandi please request me on FB its Natalia B Khumalo! Then we will talk from there. Because I have been there, hey I’m still there struggling.



    Could you perhaps describe and identify when and how you came to develop fear and anxiety please? Doing so may help me in giving you a more fitting response.

    Thank you


    Hi, I completely understand how you feel I to have the exact same issues, I have a book by Dr weeks essential help for your nerves it’s a God send, everything you need to know is in there 🙂 you will get through it try working up to things slowly, I was scared to drive for a while but I took small steps and now I can drive for small periods of time which is a massive achievement, ask yourself why your anxious in the car,what do you think will happen? Then remember all the times you drove before easily, it will help you to see that you can do it when your ready 🙂 it’s not easy I’m not going to lie but you can do it take someone with you if it helps,
    Much love x


    Hi, I know how you feel. About 3 years ago, I developed similar symptoms. I was a successful straight A student with plenty of friends and involved in many clubs. I gradually began feel numb. I lost interest in my friends. I no longer felt joy in doing things I once loved. My grades began to slip. All I did was go to school, homework, and sleep. I felt hollow inside, except for the irrational moments of fear and panic. I was terrified of starting anything new and couldn’t complete something I did finally start. I was terrified of telling anyone how I felt; i was under the illusion that it would all pass and telling anyone would be a waste of their time. I shut myself into that dark, empty room and festered alone in my sorrow. It all happened so gradually, that when I finally came to the conclusion that something was not right that it felt as if this change happened overnight. I had not seen the signs until I was about to hit bottom. I reached out, much like you are doing, and was diagnosed with depression and anxiety. I was put on medication and it changed my life. I began to feel again; I became my old self. Unfortunately, I lost a few years of my life to something that can be fixed in about 6 months. I beg you to please seek help from a professional. I do not want you to lose anymore of your life to these terrible feelings; don’t make my mistake. You mentioned that you live in South Africa, so I found a website that lists plenty of psychiatrists. Please use this as a stepping stone onto your journey of healing. It hurts me to my soul to know that anyone else has to suffer through what I went through. Be strong, it will get better.

    Allison R.

    Hi Zandile,

    I understand exactly how you are feeling. I have had cyclic bouts of anxiety (more specifically agoraphobia) for the past ten years and over the past year it has been the worst I have ever had. I also am paralyzed by fear over completing the most simple things, such as driving, traveling short distances, pretty much everything under and including the sun. Somehow I have managed to press on though. I still make it to work everyday and find ways (even miniscule ways) of experiencing joys. For me that has been helpful. Looking at and appreciating the small everyday pleasures of life. We all have them, no matter how terrible a day has been. I’ve found that documenting these things with pictures or in journals is great because you can go back and review everything that has given you pleasure over the past week or month. At first it might seem very difficult because of how lousy and hopeless you might feel. But, eventually something wonderful happens and a switch is flipped in your brain. You start to look on the bright side more and more, and realize that you haven’t been cursed with a terrible disorder that you can’t overcome.
    You can!
    Our brains are wonderful and terrible things. When we feel fear towards accomplishing everyday tasks, such as driving, it’s not necessarily those tasks that are causing the pain but some deep seeded negativity that we have been fostering unknowingly for years. I’ve done a lot of research over the past year trying to uncover the deep roots of my anxiety issues and I came upon a great article on psycologytoday.com about the five basic fears that we all live by: extinction (death), mutilation (losing a part of our body), loss of autonomy (being paralyzed, imprisoned, smothered), separation (abandonment), ego-death (shame, humiliation, loss of the integrity of self). And if you think about it, it’s true. All of our fears evolve from those five things. The trick is to figure out which fear is paralyzing you and taking steps to overcome those things; not necessarily by treating the symptoms of anxiety, but to stop fighting the symptoms and let them guide you to a place in yourself where they are coming from.
    I would definitely recommend talking to a professional who is trained in cognitive and talk therapy to help you overcoming your surface fears and then helping you slay the dragons beneath. Mindful meditation is a great way to relieve the racing thoughts and enjoy the present moments of life, and pay attention to your inner thoughts. Everytime you catch yourself in a negative thought pattern, turn it around to the positive. List all your positive traits and repeat them daily or several times a day. I found that a lot of my anxiety was caused by judging myself way to harshly and berating myself over the most insignificant things.

    It takes time to change these things about ourselves. But in the end it is so worth it and you might find that what you are going through now happened for a very good reason!

    Peace be with you <3

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