“You Don’t Have To Be Fine, But You Have To Be Trying”
I’m a person who has struggled with anxiety for a little more than a decade. In that decade I have analysed my triggers, my mistakes, what helps, what doesn’t a thousand times over. I’ve learned to cope with it and have had my system of coping fall apart more times than I would like to share. Most recently, as of a few years ago I realised I had to readjust my coping mechanisms and re-evaluate my triggers that were no longer adaptable, because of the new relationship in my life. As much as I hated that I was essentially starting from scratch I knew it had to be done. My husband (at-the-time boyfriend) and I were in what was supposed to be the “honeymoon phase” of our relationship. But for some reason it wasn’t all gum-drops and candy canes. I mean I say some reason, but I definitely knew what was happening.
We’re different people. Like complete opposites. Like if you’re into horoscopes, we’re literal opposites on the calendar (Libra vs. Aries). Plus we made the decision to move in together early on. On top of everything we had very different upbringings in different parts of the world. I told him at the time and I’ll let you all know too. We were OBVIOUSLY going to have misunderstandings and difference’s of opinions. We were two adults who were living our own solo lives and who decided to merge them together. Important was how much of an effort we were both willing to put into our new relationship. We decided at a VERY early point that as terrifying and hard as it may be some days we were willing to put in that work.
Now I’m not saying its easy or that we have the perfect relationship but we do put in work. It’s a rollercoaster some days but I can tell you that it’s worth it. We’ve come so far in such a short period of time that I am so excited to see where we’ll be in a couple of years.
As far as we’ve come, I personally still have a long way to go. By no means have I gained control of my anxiety. I’ve had more life experiences thrown my way that are only beginning to teach me a whole other chapter in this textbook of life so it’s been a struggle to say the least.
I have learned that I have what I categorised as defensive anxiety. When triggered I go into absolute defence mode. I have a hard time handling mistakes, I feel disappointed, threatened, misunderstood and hurt. And something I love doing is talking about it…excessively. Like if I’m triggered, until I hear an acknowledgment of my feelings I’m going to keep talking.
So yeah I got shit to work through. By all means, defensive behaviour is not the best way to handle your shit. You won’t get very far, it doesn’t help find or meet your core needs, and the only way to get there is to slow down and to seek a resolution that will work.
Mindfulness (via journaling) is something that works for me. After a spat I literally sit with my “Thoughts+Prayers” journal and take a moment to answer a couple of questions:
What am I trying to protect myself from? Where is the threat?
What is my core need? What is it I really need?
What is the most effective way to make it happen?
For me a lot of it is insecurity and a lack of feeling acknowledged. Which sucks because then I’m just dependent on other people’s actions. Or rather, I have an expectation and let me tell you that my expectations have ALWAYS bit me in the ass. So now I’m at a point where I have to “re-wire” my own thought processes to understand that I can’t be dependent on whether or not someone, like my husband or my boss or my mother is going to acknowledge what I said or did. It may be hard and it may hurt and I really do go through these shit storms but I know in the end I have to prioritise myself; my sanity, my rest, and over-all well being in order to create the life I’m fighting for.
Growth is not a one time choice. You don’t always have to be fine, but you have to be trying. It’s okay to break as long as you know that you’re going to rebuild. Most importantly, I encourage everyone to remember that you are okay, even when you are not. Healing is almost exclusively found in breaking.
Check out some of my favourite “Go To” reads in my Self-Love Shop that have helped me fight anxiety, grief while building self-confidence! Help me build my library by recommending your own go to reads!
Please note, that the information provided by TheWorryingWife, or through links to other sites, is not a substitute for medical or professional care, nor should you use the information provided in place of a visit, call, consultation or the advice of your physician or other healthcare professional.
This blog is a means of connecting and sharing experiences through grief and anxiety and how to manage at home during times of uncertainty.
Please seek the advice and help you need from a medical professional in order to best tackle your own personal struggles and challenges.
Further note, that as an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. This helps me create content and goodies for all of you, who continue to inspire and amaze me every day!