Enjoying Life With Anxiety

by Nick Bell
(Latrobe, PA)

I'm 17 years old and have had anxiety for close to a year and have been going to counseling for 6 months. The counseling has helped greatly I am now at what I would consider a high functioning anxiety level. I still experience anxious feelings sometimes and the light headed feelings that come along with my anxiety are almost constantly there but with the help of counseling I've learned to deal with these feelings and to do things I would normally do regardless of how I feel. Lately I've had the feelings of dread surface. I never had those sad dreadful feelings with the anxiety before but for some reason they have come in intervals over the past month or two. I've recognized what causes those feelings as thoughts of how life was before anxiety came about. Ways I've countered that is not by avoiding those thoughts necessarily but instead looking at it as I still go out and do things that I did before anxiety I still enjoy going out to eat spending time with family and doing different things I've always done. By looking at it like this I give myself the thought of this isn't that bad and this doesn't have 100% control of my life which does seem to always help. But I've been searching for ways to not just help me through the tough days but help reduce the overall anxiety level. The That's where this article intrigues me because some of the things brought up in this article are things my counselor has brought up before like doing fun things with friends. I'm an introverted shy person so this was a bit difficult for me but I've tried it and most times the friends I asked were busy so I would go myself or with my mom. As far as the sleeping goes I rarely even on days of anxiety have trouble sleeping but creating a constant time to go to sleep so you always get at least 8 hours of sleep could help for sure. I've improved greatly in my anxiety since it all began I used to not be able to stay the whole time at a simple birthday party because the anxiety was too much but now I enjoy daily fun activities even if I'm experiencing anxiety that day I don't choose to sit around and wait and hope the anxiety magically goes away by doing nothing. As far as the the exercise goes since I live in PA and it's winter my exercise has been going to the gym my mom and I just recently joined a gym and I've noticed when I'm at the gym all the feelings associated with anxiety go away. Basically I'm writing this half to show people that you can enjoy life even with anxiety as long as you allow yourself to and don't sit around and constantly feel bad for yourself. I have faith that in time the anxiety will go away as long as I continue to go about life like normal. The other reason I'm writing this is because the counseling has helped greatly and my therapist is great but he's not going to have all the answers and I'm open to here suggestions from other people as to what they think could help me continue along the improvement process. Sorry for the length but I needed to get this off my chest.

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