After years of coping with anxiety and trying to understand it, I've learned that one of the things that affect how I feel is how others feel. In other words, I've found myself quite empathic towards the feelings of others. For me, empathy and anxiety occur together.
Ever since I was diagnosed with social anxiety disorder, I have always perceived my anxiety as a bully and as my worst enemy. I hated that I struggled with anxiety and wanted nothing more than to get rid of it. Why wouldn't I? After all, my anxiety had stolen many opportunities and experiences I could have had if it hadn't made my day-to-day social interactions so tough. However, all of this changed when I learned to acknowledge the ways in which my anxiety has helped me and started expressing gratitude towards my anxiety.
If you often deal with anxiety, sometimes it might seem as though it is difficult to be happy and anxious. While anxiety is not the same as depression, I think that dealing with it can sometimes lead to depression because, when you're anxious, you may find that you experience negative emotions that lead to a general feeling of sadness. You might also find that you focus more on those negative feelings than other ones.
Job interview anxiety is a real thing, more for some of us than for others. Receiving the email, "Congratulations! We have moved your application to the next round and would like to schedule an interview with you," fills me with anxiety instead of happiness.
Something I've learned about my anxiety is that sometimes, instead of being consumed by worries about the future, it is possible to be overwhelmed by the past to the point that my memories trigger anxiety symptoms.
Has your anxiety ever made you say "no" to an opportunity that you wanted to say "yes" to? You are not alone if you have ever done that. More often than not, my anxiety holds me back from saying "yes" to opportunities that I'm interested in. While I feel a sense of relief when I say "no," I start experiencing feelings of regret soon.
As someone who has experienced anxiety for a long time, I’ve become aware of specific situations that trigger feeling anxious. One situation that can trigger my anxiety is when I make a mistake, and then anxiety makes me focus on that mistake. The problem with this is that, as we know, mistakes happen often. There, this can sometimes be something that’s continuously troubling.
"Push yourself outside your comfort zone. That's where growth happens" -- I have to disagree.
Being anxious does not automatically mean you are an introvert, just like being an introvert does not automatically mean that you are a chronically anxious person. But in my experience, this has gone hand in hand, and sometimes it feels like it is hard to separate the two.
My name is Shubhechha Dhar; I'm a writer and the new author of "Treating Anxiety." Through my blog posts, I hope to create a safe space for everyone struggling with anxiety to feel seen, understood, and heard. After being diagnosed with social anxiety disorder, I spent a year in group therapy and learned coping techniques that helped me thrive with my disorder. My life's purpose is to use my writing to reduce the stigma surrounding mental health.