The Difference Between Being Anxious And Actually Having Anxiety

The Difference Between Being Anxious And Actually Having Anxiety

Hello loves, ❤

FACT #1: Everyone will experience anxiety from time to time.

FACT #2: Anxiety is a completely normal reaction to stress – most of the time.

Let’s define “most of the time.” It motivates us to study for tests or finish our assignments. It can warn us against walking down a creepy alley at night and is the key to a fight-or-flight response in a dangerous situation.

Having a little bit of anxiety once in a while isn’t just normal, it’s healthy. It allows us to make good decisions and get things done.

Anxiety becomes a problem, however, when it doesn’t just affect you occasionally. When it begins to consume your thoughts on the daily, that’s when it becomes something more serious.

If it starts to affect your work, personal life, or health, then you might have a real, diagnosable anxiety disorder. Many people flippantly throw out phrases like “you’re triggering my anxiety” or use anxiety as an excuse, but for some individuals, an anxiety disorder can cause real problems.

Anxiety disorders usually center around an excessive and irrational fear. Several common types of anxiety disorders are:

Agoraphobia: fear of being in a place from which you can’t escape
Panic Disorder: this triggers recurring intense panic attacks
Generalized Anxiety Disorder: constant worrying
Social Anxiety Disorder: inability to be the center of attention or talk to new people

So what are the key differences between having one of these types of anxiety and just being anxious? Here’s the 411.

THE CAUSE

If you are anxious, then it is probably triggered by something specific happening in your life. Maybe you’re meeting your boyfriend/girlfriend’s parents for the first time, or maybe you have a really big paper to finish that’s worth 50% of your grade.

Those specific events are what bring on the anxiety, they make sense, and the anxiety will eventually go away when the event has passed.

People with anxiety disorders are often anxious all the time. There is no specific stressor that sets off their anxiety, and their fears are often irrational. Even though the person with anxiety knows that, in theory, they should not be so worried, they simply cannot get their body to listen to their brain.

THE STRENGTH & THE LENGTH

As mentioned above, if you have an anxiety disorder, your amount of anxiety is not equal to the size of the stressor.

For example, the idea of giving a quick and casual 3 minute presentation in class is not just undesirable, but will actually put you out of commission and leave you unable to get the job done.

As mentioned above, you are anxious for an extended period of time as well – think weeks before an exam instead of days.

THE SYMPTOMS

You’re not just worried, you are physically ill from your anxiety. Intense anxiety can often cause headaches, dizziness, trembling, nausea, etc.

You feel like you can’t talk or breathe. You can’t think or concentrate about anything other than your fear. You get red or sweaty. This is more than just butterflies in your stomach.

We’re not WebMD here, and we don’t want to make you diagnose yourself or your roommates with something incorrect. However, if what we described above rings true for you or a friend, know that anxiety is treatable and that you shouldn’t be afraid to mention it to a doctor.

There’s nothing wrong with taking care of your mental health; it’s a super important part of lala-loving yourself!

If you know someone who has an anxiety disorder, make sure not to make light of their condition. Think of it as their kid brother – they can make fun of it if they want to, but you can’t.

Instead, make sure that you are simply there for them if they need help. Don’t tell them to calm down – they know they need to calm down. Don’t tell them that you are frustrated or annoyed by their anxiety – they’re probably already super self-conscious about how their anxiety affects the people around them.

Some people may be helped by distractions, others by you sitting and listening, and others simply by sitting in silence with a friend. Each person’s anxiety is different, just like each person is different.

The most important thing to know about anxiety? BE KIND. Be kind to yourself if you suffer from it (or if you’re just stressed about a test), and be kind to your friends if they suffer from anxiety (or if they’re stressed about a test). A smile and a hug can go a long way.

Wherever you are in the world, have a lovely day ❤

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Lies Your Anxiety Constantly Tells You About Yourself

Lies Your Anxiety Constantly Tells You About YourselfHello loves, ❤

I don’t know about you but my anxiety LOVES to play mind games with me & this truly KILLS me! It’s so hard to think of yourself one way when your anxiety wants to you to believe the complete opposite, let me know if you experience any of the below:

1. That you’re unsafe.

Anxiety wants you to know that you are never safe no matter where you are. It wants you to believe that you are in danger at all times, and there’s no safe haven available for you.

2. That your panic attack isn’t just a panic attack.

Anxiety makes you believe that your panic attack is something that is much worse that what it actually is. It makes you think you are having a heart attack, a stroke, and that you are going to die. Anxiety shows you no mercy.

3. That you should shut yourself off from the world.

Anxiety doesn’t want you to feel fulfilled in your life. It doesn’t want you to be happy or mentally stable either, and tells you that you shouldn’t waste anyone’s precious time. Anxiety tells you that you should probably cancel those plans, because there’s no point in disappointing people (again).

4. That you are weak.

Anxiety loves to tell you that you are weak and pathetic. It likes to whisper to you every night and day that you should just stop trying, because you aren’t worth it in the first place. Anxiety makes you think that you are small and that you’re a burden to your loved ones.

5. That you don’t deserve love.

Anxiety tells you that you should just cancel the date before you make an awkward mess of yourself. Anxiety tells you that you don’t deserve love, because how could someone like type of shit show person that you are?

6. That you aren’t good enough.

Anxiety tells you that your best is terrible. It makes you want to tear yourself apart every time you make a tiny mistake, and makes you pay for what you did. Anxiety has no sympathy for your failures or lessons learned.

7. That you’re going to mess up everything good thing that you have in your life.

Anxiety frequently tells you that you’re going to ruin everything good in your life. If you’re in a loving relationship, anxiety tells you that you’re going to mess it up. If you finally got the job of your dreams, anxiety tells you to quit before you fuck up.

8. That you won’t ever get better.

Anxiety hammers into your head every day that it’s not going anywhere. It tells you that you’ll have anxiety forever and you’re a lost cause. Anxiety wants you to believe that it owns you, and that it controls everything that you do.

9. That you’re better off spending time alone.

Anxiety adores shutting down your social calendar and making you think that you don’t deserve great friendships. Anxiety is skilled at convincing you to flake all the time, even if it’s with people who you care deeply for.

10. That no one likes you, and that they are all just pretending.

Anxiety tells you that even your best friends hate you. It plagues your minds with paranoid thoughts that everyone is just pretending and they only hang out with you because they feel sorry for you.

11. That you are less of a beautiful human being because of your anxiety.

Anxiety loves to tell you that you aren’t enough. It tells you that you aren’t beautiful, or smart enough, to get the success that you want. It likes to shower you with self-hatred and self-doubt consistently throughout your day.

Wherever you are in the world, have a lovely day ❤

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Lies Your Anxiety Tells You About Your Relationships

Lies Your Anxiety Tells You About Your Relationships

Hello loves, ❤

Anxiety tells you that something is inherently wrong with you daily.

How can you expect anyone else to understand you if I don’t even understand yourself? Society throws around the term “anxiety” as if it’s something we all share and must all learn how to overcome. What most people are generally dealing with is stress, not anxiety. Stress creeps into your life as a result of looming deadlines, problems that need addressed, and the constant state of busyness we all live in today. Stress usually ends once those stressors are addressed and handled. Anxiety is a constant state of worry that convinces you everything is going wrong. It overthinks, over questions, and over analyzes to the point that no productivity can be achieved.

When you have generalized anxiety, you wake up every day fighting a battle that people without anxiety will never understand. Some days are easier than others. It is especially exhausting in close relationships, especially for loved ones who don’t struggle with anxiety themselves. They become more like therapists than friends and your anxiety will tell you that they love you less because of it. In romantic relationships, the anxiety monster will always be ready to convince you that everything is going terrible. Here are five lies anxiety will tell you about your relationship:

1. Anxiety tells you the entire relationship is one-sided. If you partner doesn’t reassure you regularly, you become convinced that they don’t care about you or the relationship at all. Most of the time, you are able to recognize that these thoughts must not be true. You’ll try to reassure yourself that your partner would not be dating you if they did not care about you deeply. Despite your best efforts, the racing thoughts continue.

2. Anxiety tells you that your partner isn’t interested in your life. It is normal for relationships to ebb and flow. For people with anxiety, the ebbs become debilitating. You start to question every text message, the frequency of phone calls, how many words of affection your partner is using or not using, etc. It is exhausting for you, so you know it must be exhausting for your partner. This will cause you more anxiety.

3. Anxiety tells you that you will never be deserving of happiness. In fact, when you feel overwhelming happiness in a relationship, you start bracing yourself for the next fight. You’ll start picking apart every conversation convinced that there must be some reason your partner is working so hard to appear happy. In reality, your partner has told you multiple times that you need to recognize it’s okay to be happy. The universe is not actually working against you.

4. Anxiety tells you that you will never find true love. Even if you’re in a healthy, happy relationship, anxiety tells you that it will most certainly end. It tells you that when it does end, it will definitely be all your fault and that you will be alone forever. You may even have pity parties for yourself thinking about the lifetime of loneliness definitely waiting ahead in your future.

5. Anxiety tells you the reason your previous relationships have failed is because of your anxiety. A loving partner will work to understand the source of your anxieties in relationships. If you are with someone who truly supports you, they will be patient with you as you work towards a secure bond with them. If not, you are better off if they leave. Some people are not equipped to deal with issues other than their own. If you are in a relationship with an un-supportive partner, while also dealing with anxiety, you have a recipe for disaster. Just remember, your anxiety does not define you. No matter how many lies anxiety tries to tell you, know that you are always deserving of love and happiness.

Wherever you are in the world, have a lovely day ❤

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Treat Your Anxiety Like A Welcomed Guest

Treat Your Anxiety Like A Welcomed Guest

Hello loves, ❤

Anxiety for me is that skin-tightening, heart-racing, dizzy haze that floods your body and mind. Limbs feel as if they are melting into their corresponding bones, and your sense of body is lost. Your mind jumps from conclusion to conclusion until it is decided: This is the end of the world. It’s true; the small detail that you changed that morning has altered the fabric of the universe. This is anxiety.

Anxiety is a very normal response to stress and danger. It’s a form of energy, and it surges through us, either empowering us, readying us, or paralyzing us. Thoughts move while we are frozen, breath is hard to find, and lungs seem to collapse on them. Christ, why can’t we/you/I just calm down?

I feel this, too, and then I’m told to hold it. To hold the anxiety, give it a place to settle, to breathe. This made me very anxious, naturally. “Your anxiety is a gift,”I’m told. “A message, it’s asking you to look at something.” I sat with this new information for a while until anxiety itself—with all its little fast worrying hands—decoded and reconstructed it in my mind, and it goes a little something like this:

Anxiety is a series of communications with your limbic system, amygdala, and sympathetic nervous system giving you all the sensations and emotions that create our familiar foe or friend, anxiety. At times, these feelings, reactions, and thoughts can grow and consume you—until you are a breathless body of a panic attack. But why was the anxiety there in the first place?

I ask myself these things as it arises. Perhaps it wants to be heard. To finally be acknowledged. Perhaps it wants to know that it isn’t so bad. My advice:

Give it a place to settle when it arrives. Here, you can say, take this space in my chest. Yeah, you can settle right there near my heart. Like any guest—frequent as they may be—they like to feel welcomed. The natural reaction is to fear the anxiety itself, is to become anxious about the anxiety. Here, we want to greet the anxiety with compassion. “I shouldn’t be feeling this way” becomes “It’s okay to be feeling this way.”

As anxiety settles in, you can ask your guest if they are comfortable. (You, of course, might feel completely unsettled.) And after they are settled in and awkward introductions are over with, you can start introspection. What message is being sent?

I’m not talking about the small detail that set it off; I’m talking about the core issues. Anxiety can be considered as a message—or the messenger, if you will—of the core issue. Maybe you can’t find it. Maybe it is unclear—this is okay. Maybe all the anxiety wants in this moment is some simple recognition. “Yes, anxiety I see you, and I call you by your name.”

Your anxiety might grow, it might overwhelm. Like all agitated guests, it might get up from the place you gave it and overwhelm. This is okay—this entire exercise is a process. If you can couch your anxiety back in that welcomed spot, try to listen again. Try to tell your guest that you see them, and that it is okay to be here. On that note, try telling yourself that as well. It’s okay for your anxiety to be there.

It is uncomfortable, difficult, and exhausting, but your anxiety now is a guest—welcomed and calm. The effect of this exercise is to decrease the anxiety of the anxiety. To have the initial anxiety settle and swim in your system—to float. It speaks to you and occasionally asks for a glass of red, but it doesn’t overwhelm. It doesn’t separate mind from body and suck the air of your lungs. It keeps the panic attacks away and you at bay.

Wherever you are in the world, have a lovely day ❤

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