Moving Past Anxiety

Some people like to talk about feelings as if they are unimportant. Do you remember the old saying, “sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me”? That saying perfectly encapsulates the philosophy that views physical injuries as something “real” and emotional injuries as “unreal.” Anxiety might be in your mind, but your mind is the core of your being.

For some people worry isn’t a problem, but these people are incredibly rare. Even carefree people can lay awake at night as they feel the walls close in on them. I should know, I’ve been there. But then again, who hasn’t?

There is so much going on in this world, it’s no wonder that people feel overwhelmed. Our minds are incredible things. They can do things that even the world’s most expensive and sophisticated supercomputers can’t do. But all this power can be a threat if our minds use their power to self-sabotage. That’s what anxiety is. The mind is designed to recognize problems and fix them. But what if it fixates entirely on problems, real and hypothetical. It can get to the point where we feel so overwhelmed and drained that we feel helpless. This attitude can quickly create problems which lead to a feedback cycle where things just keep getting worse and worse.

What you need to know is that the situation might be bad, but it’s never hopeless. You can break the cycle. You can reprogram your brain so that you focus more on doing what you need to do and less on problems that you can’t or don’t need to handle.

I’m not saying it’s easy, but I am saying it’s possible.

When I talk about this subject, many people will ask me how I “cured” my anxiety. I can see the desire in their eyes, their hunger for an answer. But I can’t give them the answer they’re looking for because the question is wrong. I haven’t cured my anxiety. I can’t cure it! It’s a part of my life. But that’s OK.

Does eating food cure hunger? The hunger might go away for a while, but it will come back. But do we sit around crying over this fact? No, we understand that we need to eat every day if we want to live. More than that, we find food we like so that we actually look forward to treating the pain that is always just a few hours away.

Anxiety can be managed. It’s not as easy to treat as grabbing a bite to eat is, but in the end, it’s unimaginably satisfying to discover the tools that will help you manage your anxiety and start enjoying life. You can do it. The sooner you start, the better. A better life is waiting for you, you just need to start heading towards it.