Anxiety my experience

As a student myself I am way too familiar with anxiety. Be it meeting new people for a study project, lining up to ask your grumpy-looking professor an obvious question, for which the answer can be dug out from the course outline he provided on the first day of class anyways. Or, even a minute before a huge final exam for a pre-requisite class that’ll seal your future for medical school. Believe me, I get it. It’s just a part of what a student goes through in university or college. However, a student should not have trouble finding resources to help deal with the anxiety he/she feels.

Everyday problem

If you were to ask someone who experiences anxiety every day, their response would be something like, increased heart rate, rapid breathing, being extremely nervous or restless, cannot concentrate, sweating, trembling, shaking, etc. As you can imagine, it’s not a pleasant situation be in. Now anyone can argue that we all get a little nervous and restless now and then, yes that is true – having a little stress and fear when meeting someone new or going in for a job interview is completely natural. But where anxiety becomes a problem is when we experience it every day or even multiple times a day, where it affects our ability to perform daily activities and function normally.

You are not alone

To those struggling with anxiety, the important thing to remember is that you’re not alone. The stigma surrounding mental health is being tackled every day, and that’s what we aim to do here at The Stationary Company as well. Many public figures, such as actors, singers, and activists are coming out with their experiences and stories on mental health, and especially on anxiety. Now, as awful as experiencing anxiety can be, the support online and around many communities can really be magical. The internet is an amazing support group filled with many nurturing personalities who can help you learn how to manage your anxiety. But, apart from online help, what else can one do individually when experiencing anxiety?

Perspective

The question many of us fail to ask when we’re experiencing anxiety is, how can I look at this in a different way, how can I shift my thinking about my anxiety? Well, an excellent practice, for really anything in life, is to think positively. When we change our thinking, it allows our minds to calm down and stimulates the activation of our parasympathetic nervous system. I don’t want to bore you with all of my physiology knowledge, but what the parasympathetic nervous system does is, it helps relax and keep you calm, hence reducing your anxiety. So how do we switch on our parasympathetic nervous system?

Friend or Foe

Well, the first step would be to not think of anxiety as your enemy who’s out to sabotage every aspect of growth in your life. You should think of anxiety as that safe friend who wants what’s best for you. So, of course like the cautious friend it is, it will try and protect you and if that means to flood you with nerves, or cause a storm of overwhelming thoughts, then that’s exactly what your safe friend (anxiety) will do to shelter you. However, it’s important to speak to that safe friend and tell it that it’s okay, that you acknowledge it’s only trying to protect you, but being safe all the time and staying put in your comfort zone will not allow you to advance in life.

My advice to you

You have to empower yourself, speak confidence to your anxiety and start seeking opportunities. The moment you start speaking powerful thoughts to your mind when hit with an anxiety attack, I promise you that a spark of change will ignite inside you and a swarm of positive feelings will overtake you. When you change your thinking, your anxiety diminishes. It will soon evaporate from your body and you’ll get control of your life back!

I hope I was able to give you a taste of what anxiety is and how you can start to look at it through a different lens in order to conquer it. I love talking about mental health, and I’m ready to help anyone struggling with any mental health issue. Thank you for reading and I hope you enjoyed it!

Athar Tahir

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Apart from my dire passion to write, I like meeting new people and discussing new and current topics. I have a passion for travelling and experiencing new adventures