Anxiety has been part of my life. It began to take over my life when I reached my adolescent years. This anxiety is beyond shyness and stress; it has intense fears that make me unable to function well. I never quite discussed it with other people, not even to my family, and it negatively affected how they perceive me.
I’ll be sharing with you this extremely personal story of mine; the profound effects of anxiety in my life; signs and symptoms and how I’m conquering it. Hopefully, you’ll learn from this post and understand more about this issue.
- Feeling nervous in public settings. I’m trembling whenever I’m in a public situation that requires my full involvement or attention. There’s an intense fear within me. Feelings of being evaluated and scrutinized are too overwhelming to enable my mind to think clearly. This kind of situation often embarrasses me and makes me weep at night before I fall asleep.
- Fear of leaving the house. I can’t run an errand outside. I just leave the house if I need to go to school or somewhere. There were those times I cry inside the bathroom while taking a bath to ease myself.
- I struggled to create friendships. I have a small social circle. As much as I want to have a great time with them or confide in them – there’s a fear that holds me back; fear of criticism, rejection, being talked about, being the center of attention and being vulnerable in front of them. I distrust people a lot.
- I over think things, whether it be a small or big thing. These thoughts deeply occupy my mind, to a certain extent, I struggled to find peace of mind.
- Difficulty in concentrating. Focusing becomes almost impossible for me. When I’m dealing with anxiety and in a conversation with someone else paying close attention is a big challenge for me. Difficulty in concentrating happens to me in different situations.
- I have lost the interest to live. I did poorly in school. I got family and relationship problems. I become uninterested in almost everything. I was unhappy and unmotivated. I thought my life would end before I reach my 19th years on earth. I suffered from low self-esteem. I avoided mirrors because I was afraid to see my reflection and come to realize that I was no longer that beautiful little princess I once before.
- I felt these physical symptoms; rapid heartbeat, heartburn, face twitching, headaches, spinning sensation and disorientation. As well as difficulty concentrating, trouble falling asleep, nausea, dry throat, choking feelings, cold hands, trembling, weight loss, hair loss, rashes and negative thoughts such as “what if” thoughts, fearful, repetitive, and suicidal thoughts.
I began to understand I’m suffering from anxiety when one time I got rashes all over my skin, we went to a doctor, and I remember she said that one possible reason of these rashes is depression. She wrote an excuse letter to my teacher to allow me to have at least three days rest because I’m not physically and emotionally okay. I was 14 years old back then.
From that moment, I knew I’m not just suffering from anxiety, but there’s a depression taking over my life. I’ve realized I need to seek help, but fears are holding me back. It was a very painful experience for me especially to have no one to tell, no shoulders to lean on. I believe I’m beyond reach to be understood by them.
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I’m conquering it by doing the things I listed below.
- Praying. Whenever I’m in a social situation, I ask God to remind me that He is my strength, and He’s with me. He is the one who will enable me to do certain things. That his Spirit abides in me, teaches me all things and guides me into all truth. (John 16:13)
- Filling my mind with God’s word. I shift my mind to heavenly thoughts. Meditating his word will help me to calm myself. I store his word in my mind and heart so whenever anxiety attacks – his word is my sword.
- Trusting God and loving his people. I began to love people when I experience the overflowing love of God. When you love people, it doesn’t matter what they think of you, what most significant is how God sees them. Trusting God enables me to love his people.
- Reminding myself about my true identity in Him. It’s so important to know who you are and your purpose in life. I become capable of enjoying life when God revealed the purpose of my life. I am a child of God. I’m Victorious and Blessed! Whom shall I fear?
- Crying out to God. I cry out to him. I tell him when fears and negative thoughts are knocking to beat me. I believe God doesn’t require us to be strong when coming to Him, but He does require our honesty. Know His presence vanishes all fears.
God healed me from depression meanwhile my anxiety disorder is under control. When I accepted Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior, I received power and become able to do the list above.
“For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline.” – (2 Timothy 1:7)
It took me a lot of courage to share this personal story. Hopefully, this post helps you gain insights and understanding about this issue. And to all the people with anxiety disorder, remember Jesus is not limited to miraculously heal us. We need to take our heavy load and put them into the hands of the one who can carry the weight and who sustains us by his power. He died on the cross to redeem us and free us from ourselves.
“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light” (Matt 11:28-30).