Cloudy with a Chance of Anxiety

Mental Health

My mind has been cloudy lately. I’m having trouble focusing and I feel scattered. I’m feeling overwhelmingly discontent. Some questions that have popped up recently are…Who am I? What do I want to tell the world? What are the main goals when growing my business? How much time do I put into my new side business? How much focus do I put on bettering myself behind the scenes versus continuing to expand my online presence? What is my purpose?

For the first time in my life, I’m realizing that I might struggle with anxiety. Not just situational nervousness or an uneasy stomach, but I’m starting to notice a substantial increase of symptoms. The fogginess, racing thoughts, fatigue, etc. At times, I feel like I’m going to literally black out. I’m short of breath, my chest gets tight, and it’s like I want to jump out of my own skin. It’s scary, but sometimes I question myself….Am I being overdramatic? What is “real” anxiety versus normal life stress? What if I’m just not doing enough to take care of myself? I could easily work on my spirituality.  I work out 3-5 times a week, but I could work out more. I do yoga a couple of times a month. Should I do it everyday? I listen to a few meditations monthly, but not daily. I definitely could eat more vegetables instead of a whole row of Thin Mints (Thanks, Girl Scouts). Also, is it just my hormones? Sometimes I feel crazy and I wonder if it’s just a thing us women go through. After I start thinking about all the things I SHOULD be doing to manage my anxiety, I get even more stressed out! It’s a vicious cycle!

I can’t begin to describe how difficult this is to admit to my readers, but also to myself. This is a new development for me and I’m not even sure what’s going on mentally, but I know that writing it down is a step in the right direction. Frankly, I’m embarrassed and I figured if I’m embarrassed then there has to be other individuals who feel the same way. The best way to help the stigma of depression, anxiety, addiction and so on…is to talk about it, right? I think so!

Anxiety affects 40 million adults in the U.S. That’s 18.1% of the population every year! Only 36.9% of those suffering receive treatment (ADAA, 2018). I’m not sure exactly what constitutes as “treatment.” But, to me, that means that less than half the people who struggle with anxiety are taking steps to help themselves. That leads me to believe that a vast amount of those people probably aren’t talking about it openly either. I guarantee most individuals are walking around thinking that their anxiety is just “part of life” and “life is hard.” Does it have to be though?

Why are we so anxious? 

 

There’s no one answer to that question and anxiety is caused by a variety of factors; environmental, genetic, and our brain chemistry all play a role. BUT, I’ve noticed a trend recently, in my own life and others, that is bound to affect people’s mental well-being and that is we are a society of “provers.” Let me PROVE that I’m a good worker. Let me PROVE that I’m a great parent. Let me PROVE that I’m a fun time, but also still dedicated. Let me PROVE to you that I’m unique, but also still able to coexist with others. Watch me accomplish all my goals and I’ll PROVE to you that I’m finally worth something! The world of social media has exacerbated this issue ten fold. Ironically, as I’ve really rumbled with myself (rumbled is a term I stole from Brene Brown-check her work out), I’ve realized that social media has been a huge part of my heightened anxiety this last year. I run my dance studio social media accounts, personal accounts, and now I have added more accounts and online events/promotions for Beautycounter. I think I need a whole planner just to schedule my social media posts (mmm…not a bad idea). I’m realizing that the more I try to connect through my phone, the more I’m trying to PROVE myself, and the more unhappy I become. It’s frustrating, because I love this new venture I’ve started and I truly love that social media can connect people to my businesses, but it is making me SO disconnected from my relationship and my mental health.

Some of you may be thinking that this isn’t you. You don’t have to prove yourself to anyone and you are comfortable with who you are and the choices you make. Kuddos to you! I hope to have that enlightenment sooner than later, but I think for a lot of people, especially those of us who are just starting our adult lives, feel the need to PROVE ourselves. Every. Dang. Day.

I listened to a Youtube stream my mom sent me the other day. I’m going to drop it below, so you all can take a listen if you so choose. The speaker is Esther Hicks, and honestly when I first listened to her, I thought her concepts were a little out there. She was using verbage I wasn’t real familiar with. She speaks of the vortex and universe quite often. I promise, she is NOT an alien. Her words might be unique, but her messages are quite simple. In the video below she discusses the need to prove ourselves. She tells a story about herself and how she discovered that she “never had anything to prove anyway” and she “was worthy without the struggle.” She let herself “know her own goodness” and that she “was a good person anyway!” Wait, WHAT?

Those words struck me like a lightning bolt. My first thought was, “why the hell am I working so hard to prove myself in literally every single area of my life when I am already enough?” I feel like this anxiety that I’ve been struggling with has a lot to do with my own insecurities, and my need to please and be without flaws. I have to PROVE that I’m an amazing dance studio owner. I have to PROVE that I’m an adequate head coach. I have to PROVE that I can be successful with Beautycounter. I have all these dreams, things to learn, places to go, people to educate, and I just want them all to happen now, now, now and frankly, I’m burning my self out.

I’m constantly in a state of never being enough and I’m doing it to myself! 

 

 

Now that I’m done spilling out my heavier thoughts, in true Taryn fashion, I have to end on a positive note and say that I am taking steps to figure out a balance in my life. I am starting to take a magnesium supplement drink every night to see if it positively impacts me. My mom recommended it, because it’s really helped her. I ordered it off of Thrive Market, but I’m sure it can be found in a variety of places!

I am going to work on some tactics to step away from social media for short periods of time to really be present with myself and the people I love. I am going to actively continue positive self-talk every morning. I’ve also been diffusing lavender essential oil, which has been proved to help with anxiety, insomnia, depression, and restlessness. Last night, I decided to fully dive in and ordered a whole Young Living Kit. If you want more information about essential oils, please let me know. I am not well-versed yet, but I can direct you towards an amazing lady who has an abundance of knowledge not only with essential oils, but she’s also a Holistic MS Dietician and Alternative Health Advocate.

Some may think, “just go to a doctor and get a prescription” and I am in no way knocking that path. Who knows, that might be a route I have to take in the future, but I would WAY rather try to remedy my anxiety in a natural way first. I’m passionate about safer products and safer beauty, and I personally believe Big Pharma does NOT have our best interest at heart. More on that topic at a later time!

Anyways, I want to leave you with one last note, from my dear mother, who has helped me navigate through these mentally difficult times.

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I hope her words fill you with some joy or hope as you continue on your own path through life’s winding journey.

Much love,

T

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