Stress and Anxiety

Stress and anxiety falls close to home for many people now a days. Anxiety is a personal issue I have struggled with for a long time.

My family has history of both depression and anxiety. The fact is your genes are hard to avoid. Its often hard for people to face the facts and admit they need help to deal with their emotions. I know because it was the case for me. I have seen therapists periodically to deal with a variety of life struggles. I also have a close friend that is a Psychologist and has counseled me on many occasions. It often helps to talk to someone with a fresh perspective and open mind. I have enjoyed and benefited from all my therapy experiences. They have all been different based on the specialized techniques each therapist uses.

But I can tell you they were all beneficial and helped me surpass my obstacles. and balance my emotional self. During my health crisis in 2013, I was under extreme stress and suffering from Panic Attacks, stress and anxiety. I was often sad and lonely because my husband was traveling constantly. My panic attacks would range from crying on the floor to feeling terrified in the car. I remember one particular incident that occurred during my Master’s Nursing Program. I had a paper probably 30 more more pages long. The paper was due and I was having issues with the drop box program it needed to be submitted in. I was high strung, stressed and very emotional. I had spent countless hours researching and preparing this document.

Suddenly, as I tried to submit the document, it completely disappeared from my computer. I was so upset, my heart was racing, time was almost out and I felt helpless. I began crying uncontrollably on my knees in the office. My husband luckily was able to find the document again, I still have no idea how. This occurred during the months were my disease and illness was worsening. At this time, I knew I needed help. I needed someone to help me deal with the stress and give me strategies to cope. Though, I had learned strategies in nursing school, when it is you, they don’t come to mind. My therapist treated me at the same time I was changing my diet and fitness regimen. She helped me realize that exercise was an outlet to release stress and anxiety. She interestingly also helped me with pain by using imagery.

I actually went into a session with a severe migraine, light was unbearable and my head was pounding. She helped me imagine a color that was relaxing to me “yellow.” I chose yellow because to me that is like sunshine, relaxing and soothing. She then told me to paint the areas of pain with my paintbrush. I proceeded to paint in my mind the area where my migraine was. I painted over my eyes, along my jaw and my head. It sounds crazy, I know, but it worked. I remember feeling a huge sense of relief after that session. She also taught me another technique to help me sleep at night. I am a worry wart. I tend to think and think so much at night that I can’t go to sleep. I worry about the kids, work, an event, you name it, it’s on my mind. She taught me to put those thoughts in a bottle or suitcase, place them on a train and watch them go away. I know, insane right, but that shows the power of the mind. If you think it, you believe it and then it is achievable.

I would actually do this exact routine several times throughout that year to cope with my stress. Fast forward to 2018, my life now is stressful in different ways but I have learned to cope with my stress more effectively because of everything I learned throughout my journey to wellness. The Protandim has released the build-up of inflammation in my body which was making me anxious and depressed. I won’t like I still get anxious sometimes before a big event but my body responds much better to it. For example, last night I was so nervous because I had a new venue I was attending at 7 am. I had 3 alarms set but I still kept waking up to check the time. I woke up 4 times throughout the night yet I managed to wake up energized and ready to go.

I realize now that I had actually forgotten to take my evening dose of Protandim. I use it twice a day because my autoimmune condition makes me develop inflammation and joint stiffness overnight. I woke up and saw the pill on the counter and said “Hmmm no wonder, I didn’t sleep well.” Thankfully, even though I woke up so often, i fell right back to sleep each time. So I tell you, don’t feel ashamed or crazy, everyone needs help sometimes. We all have obstacles to face in our stressful lives. Sometimes we get so many obstacles that the impact our emotional wellbeing. Its okay to talk to someone about it. A psychologist or therapist can help give you strategies to cope with these emotions. If you feel stressed, anxious, sad or depressed get help. Your life will improve because of it.