Monday, 14 May 2018

MENTAL HEALTH: THE SERIES

Since posting about my anxiety a little bit more in detail in February and having so many people showing more interest in that one particular post it got me thinking that I want to include more about anxiety regularly as mental health is so important!
I've wanted to create a series for a while now where I can talk about mine and others experiences dealing with anxiety and what it feels like so that other people can get help from it if they're struggling with it themselves or have someone around them that needs your support.
Today marks the start of Mental Health Awareness Week so thought this was quite an appropriate time to begin a very important series on my blog.

So first of all I actually want to be more honest and explain a little bit more about myself and what I do to deal with anxiety on a daily basis. From what I can remember I've struggled with anxiety from a very young age and I just tended to do a lot of worrying as a child - pretty much about everything.
I think when I hit my late teens it did affect me a lot more because I was growing up and starting to see things from an adults point of view (and that shit's scary). This was probably when I started to exclude myself from things and I'd just have certain days where I didn't want to do anything or see anyone and I didn't quite know what the reason was that this was happening but I guess for a while I kind of thought this was normal and everyone would have their days.

Skip a couple of years and I probably reached the peak of my anxiety where I just pretty much didn't do anything or I would agree to doing something and then right up until the day I'd be fine and on the day I had no reason not to go other than not wanting to go because my anxiety was too high. Not gonna lie this made me look like a shit friend and people probably knew I was making up excuses not to go but who cares if this is how you feel you should never feel pressured to go somewhere or do something if you feel you simply can't and at this time I felt I physically couldn't.

Another huge thing for me is travelling, I have briefly mentioned it here before about how I stress myself out before going anywhere or stress myself packing to go anywhere. It got so bad last year when I went on a family holiday to Portugal that I physically couldn't talk to anyone in the minibus on the way to the airport and then again in the airport right up until I got out of security and was able to sit down to have a drink.
At the time I was travelling with my boyfriends family and only my boyfriend really knows the severity of my anxiety but that was okay because he fully understands and knows how I deal with everything and he acts as my amazing support system too. After struggling both there and back in the airport on that holiday I decided to take further action and go and seek some advice from a therapist.
This was a task in itself as I had booked appointments twice to go and ended up cancelling on them both because I was so embarrassed to go and had the thought running through my head 'what if someone I know sees me in the waiting room?' it was only after cancelling both of these I was like 'ok come on Emeli you have to do this for yourself' and I did and it was the best thing I've done.

For a while I was religiously going to a therapy session around every 2-3 weeks and was not only helping me find tips and tricks to help me control my anxiety but I was gaining general knowledge about other aspects around it and other things that can be linked in for example for me I have a little bit of OCD that ties in with my anxiety.

I know if your thinking how could this tie in? Doesn't OCD mean you have to be a clean freak??
Not at all OCD is when someone has obsessive thoughts that drives them to do a certain thing over and over and this eventually helps get rid of those thoughts they first had.
For me as an example when I am travelling with both my hand luggage and my suitcase I will constantly feel the zip and lock on my suitcase over and over just to make sure its locked before I eventually hand it over and not see my suitcase again until the other end.
Now that I type that I think well thats silly Emeli, check it once and then you know its locked and done with but for me it kind of makes me feel better doing that because I can settle once I've handed my case over knowing that I have checked the lock and I know its 100% locked and there won't be any problems.

I have come to terms that my anxiety will never leave me, it'll never be something that is going to disappear over night but I have a lot more knowledge about it now and I know how to control my worry and can also calm myself down if I ever have a panic attack - which actually doesn't happen that often anymore because I know to not let myself get to that level. I know that when I'm feeling like this I don't want to leave the house or see anyone that maybe I should just take myself for a short walk to clear my head.

I'm in a good place right now and it comes from being more clued up on mental health problems, learning about yourself, testing out different techniques and the most important one - being more open about it by talking to someone which is why I wanted to start this series.
I want the word to be spread, I want people to be able to talk to each other who might be in a similar situation and I want the person who is reading this to know that they are not alone.

I hope you enjoyed reading this post and are looking forward to my series!
Leave me any comment below😁
#mentalhealthawarenessweek







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