Anxiety and How to F$@# It Off…

July 29, 2016

We are currently sunning ourselves in the laid back suburb of Perigian Springs, Sunshine Coast. We have spent a few days settling in at my Mother In Law Sue’s or Jahla’s Tina! (Samoan for grandmother)…It is so lovely to be relaxed in the sunshine and have a second pair of hands with Jahla, some company AND some awesome home cooked meals! We are here for the next few weeks and Sue is so excited for Jahla to be here that it allows me the opportunity to have a few days off here and there 🙂

I decided to take advantage of the offer and book an Air BnB near Kangaroo Point in South Brisbane. I was extremely lucky and nabbed a great place on the river and it was the only 2 days for the entire month it was available! As I hit the road I didn’t feel the excitement/relief of freedom from parenting that I thought I was going to and have had in the past. A strange feeling swept over me that I couldn’t quite put my finger on. I tried my best to keep in the present moment cranked the tunes and let in some fresh air.

I enjoyed my first night in Brisbane and spent the next day in the salon splurging on a total hair make over! I LOVE my new hair and through 6 degrees of separation the hairdresser and I knew all the same people from Perth! I must say I relaxed into the feeling of not being rushed and skipping the blow-dry to rush to get J. That night I caught up with Chantel my old flatmate from 9 years ago and we had such a great girlie catchup, it was like we had never been apart - even though our lives had taken us in totally different directions.

The next day this feeling of unease had grown…I was really “trying” to figure out where this feeling with stemming from, it was frustrating me and I kept analysing where this feeling of unease was coming from. For those that don’t know me, you may be surprised to know that I have suffered with anxiety for years. Everyone gets affected in different ways but for me I pace, shallow breath, sweat, catastrophize life as I know it and get severe nausea. This is something I have suffered with since my early teens and have had it effect me in varying ways over the years, sometimes I can talk myself out of it in a few minutes/hours but sometimes it can literally cripple me for days/weeks. Its like I know it’s irrational but something in my brain wants to cling onto the fear of uncertainty replay/relive/catastrophize every single thought/action/reaction. For the few that know me to the deepest darkest corners of my brain - Thankyou. These few people have repeatedly been my saviour and managed to drag me out from my despair. In particular my best friend Candice who has known me since we were 11- I love you!! Seriously there for me through thick and thin x

Being on the road is amazing and being the flow and trusting the unknown has a magical beauty but like everything the uncertainty and instability of life on the road can trigger insecurity and anxiety. In this case separating from Jahla triggered the anxiety of the unknown.

In the past I have masked my anxiety with drugs/alcohol/food and extreme exercise, but over the years have found better coping mechanisms. I hadn’t had an attack like this in awhile and so I searched my bag of tricks for pulling myself out of the funk!


TOP TIPS FOR BEATING ANXIETY…

1. Allowing the feeling to be. For so long I tried to fight the feeling, wishing I felt happy, calm, relaxed, but if what you resist persists - wishing it to be anything other than what is fights the feeling causing more discontent. Take a breath allow the the anxiety to be there in its fullness and watch it dissipate.

2. Focus on bringing attention back to the breath, slow it down.

3. Get Outside!! It will be the absolute last thing you feel like doing. Your brain will tell you not to. The anxious brain is smart and wants to keep you frozen in fear so it will try keep you from doing things that will make you feel better.

4. Phone a friend!! Phone someone that knows you well and knows exactly how to get you out of the funk without allowing/enabling you to indulge further.

5. Catastrophize the situation to the ridiculous!!! Im talking about taking anxiety about a situation to the most far out ridiculous outcome that could never happen - it allows you to see how ridiculous stressing about it is.

6. Meet a friend for a herbal tea/water and a good chat.

7. Avoid sugar, junk, caffeine, drugs, alcohol as these can exacerbate the feelings

8. Read or watch a light hearted movie or comedy!

9. Exercise moderately, drink plenty of water and get some sleep.

10. Yoga/Meditation

In this case I went to the movies, switched my focus from trying not to be anxious and on the drive home from Brissy cranked some feel good tunes with the window down!! I marvelled at the sunset and could once again enjoy the feeling of the unknown!

By the time I returned up the coast, I was more than ready to see J. I felt refreshed, anxiety free and ready to rock 🙂

Do you have any tips to add for beating anxiety?? I would love to have them in my tool belt xxx


We are relaxing here until the next leg of our adventure in Europe!!

#anxiety #beatanxiety #toptips #ourgypsyadventure #dealing

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