Over these past few days, I have been discussing about how I have overcome anxiety. Between working retail and taking a TEFL certification class, it is has been difficult to remain consistent these days. I feel like I am supposed to share more of my personal story of how I overcame anxiety. I will be splitting my story into segments so that it is easier for me to write and for others to read. Enjoy!
I hear so many people claiming that they have the cure for anxiety. Doctors prescribe anti-anxiety medication to even those who do not have a diagnosed anxiety. Nutritionists boast that they have found a super food that is all natural and can cure any disease. Pastors preach sermons that have the same Bible verses about how to have peace, claiming that anxiety comes from a lack of faith and from sin.
I tried praying harder. I tried counseling. I tried all of the techniques that people told me would help. But I still woke up with a racing heart and troubled mind. I became discouraged. It looked like everyone else could live in peace but me. There was no hope for me.
Everyone else seemed to have a handle on their lives. I was the only one struggling to survive. Normal people could go to work without having a stomachache. Other people could take a test without having trouble breathing. But I was the weird one. I was the one who overreacted, who didn’t understand, and who wasn’t understood. While I spent time with friends, I could not concentrate on the moment. I tried convincing myself that I wasn’t going to mess up, that I wasn’t going to give anyone proof that I was a failure. If I made one wrong move, everyone would know that I wasn’t perfect…and that wasn’t okay.
I have been talking about how to overcome anxiety. Since I was little, anxiety seemed to have overcome me. Anxiety was a rock, and I was being crushed underneath it. All my life, I heard the negative voices around me telling me that I would never amount to anything. It is interesting that I won awards as a child for being good at reading and writing, and that two of my teachers wanted me to skip to the next grade, but I could only remember the people who trampled on my dreams. No matter what achievements I made, I could not hear someone cheering me on, telling me to keep going.
I used anxiety to feel in control. However, anxiety became a reminder that, at the end of the day, I was still a failure and I was never going to have a happy ending. Anxiety was a result of my dead end life. I had no hope for my future, but I had no way out of the life I was living. It’s like I was stuck. I was not going to get anywhere, but I still felt the urge to try.