I got to thinking about what I want to accomplish this year and realised that most of the things were relatively normal/everyday things for the average person. Sometimes anxiety gets the better of me (no matter how hard I resist), and in turn, the most mundane tasks can become emotionally and physically exhausting. This doesn’t usually prevent me from achieving things, I’m very much a stubborn person who goes after what they want, but that’s not to say I don’t have a tough time getting there. I thought I’d curate a few things that have been on my mind lately, and share how any anxious thoughts have been affecting them…
1) Travelling alone
When I say travelling alone – it’s rather a reference to being comfortable with travelling alone and everything it entails. I’m totally comfortable wandering around by myself in my normal day to day life, I mainly shop alone, I work alone most of the the time, and I have no issues with being by myself. Travelling however, throws an unwelcome feeling into the mix – I very much like to be in control of what I’m doing, otherwise anxiety tends to catch me of guard. I like to know where I’m going and how I’m getting there, I like to be familiar with the route and what lies ahead. I want to get used to travelling alone so that it just becomes a breeze – I want to reinforce myself that if a train gets cancelled or I find myself lost, I won’t have a panic attack and feel like a complete idiot. Anxiety often makes us feels this way, like we are big babies complaining about nothing – it’s important to shift that mentality, not only for sufferers themselves, but also the support network around them. The more we educate ourselves, the better we can be for each other!
2) Join a gym class
My current gym is a mere few steps from the back entrance of my flat building – I promised myself that as soon as I started freelancing full time, I’d leave for the gym each day for an hour instead of having a lunch hour. In classic me style, this obviously hasn’t happened yet, my feet haven’t really touched the ground since leaving my job, but I’m determined to make progress. I mainly just want to tone up again and feel strong/healthy, and I’d love to join a gym class! The fear of joining a class where everybody already knows each other/knows the scary ‘gym moves’, is beyond daunting when anxiety flares up. I just have to remind myself that everyone is there for the same reason, to better themselves in some way and to escape for an hour or so.
3) Create video/chatty content
I’m not sure if a YouTube channel is for me, I’ve discussed this a few times on here and I’m not sure if I’d currently have the time to commit to creating the type of content I’d want to put out there. Nor do I have the editing or presenting skills to be confident enough to sit down and watch myself without completely cringing. For the immediate future, my blog is my sole focus, and luckily it’s keeping me busy so far. I would like to create some sort of videos in the future though, styling videos and a few beauty tutorials perhaps. It’s just getting to a head-space that enables me to bite the bullet and try something completely new. It’s not always easy, but there’s no way of knowing if something will work or not until you try it out!
4) The power of saying no
By this I mean – starting to teach myself that saying no doesn’t always mean that I’m letting people down. Whether it’s declining blog opportunities because they just don’t feel like the right fit, or choosing the odd weekend to focus on my work rather than go out drinking with friends. I often feel that I’m a bit glued to my laptop, but I enjoy my work so much that sometimes I don’t notice that I haven’t socialised in a week or two. I need stop worrying what other people think, and rather just be kind to myself and find a happy medium. I’m getting much better at this and have already felt my confidence improve drastically as the year has progressed.
5) It’s time to move
Whether it’s the end of this year or the beginning of next – it’s definitely time for Sam and I to uproot our little flat and start looking at somewhere with more space. We are so central which is perfect for our work situations, but we have almost become complacent here now. I’d like to find somewhere we can fully make our own, somewhere I can have a little office and get myself more organised! I currently have a desk space in our living room which is fine, but sometimes it’s hard to separate work from home life and I think it’s healthy to have those boundaries. I end up working until midnight sometimes without even realising that I’m doing it, there’s always something I can be getting on with, and this means I find it difficult to switch off. I think having a physical office door to close each day would be a great help and I’m hoping it will become a reality in the not too distant future. It’s hard to switch off when you have anxiety, I’m a pen clicker and a leg shaker at the best of times, this is only heightened when I have a mammoth to-do list…
It’s often frustrating as someone who is generally quite outgoing and loves to have new experiences, anxiety becomes a part of you that you battle against, but it’s important to remember that it’s not your personality, it doesn’t define your character. Just because one day I might not feel up to doing something, it doesn’t mean I’m a bad person or that I’m wasting my life. It just means I’m being kind to myself and patient with the progress I make. I encourage myself to do things that make me uncomfortable all the time – something shifts in me mentally when this occurs and it’s normally always for the better!
What are some things that you find scary, and how do you do your best each day to overcome them? Would love to hear in the comments below, and this doesn’t just apply to those with anxiety either…
Photography by Adriana
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