Finding Freedom From Anxiety

Posted October 6, 2017 in anxiety, meditation, yoga, spirituality, stress management

I'm getting really personal on the blog today, and sharing my struggle with anxiety and the one thing I did to free myself from my daily anxiety.

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When I looked at my calendar for the day, I was reminded of a networking event I had planned to attend. My first instinct was to come up with an excuse not to go. 

But, if I was really honest with myself, I had nothing else going on and the event was going to be a good place for potential business opportunities. I knew I should go. 

I decided to go for a run first to let go of some of my nervous energy. Just a few blocks away from my house, I felt as if my throat was closing. I started gasping for air, and my eyes filled with tears. I began walking, taking slow and deep breaths, and repeating a mantra until I felt like I could breath again. 

This is what anxiety looks like for me. 

You may be thinking that going to a networking event doesn't seem like a big deal. For me, going to an event by myself and having to approach people to sell myself, feels like pure torture. 

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Growing up, I was shy. I remember feeling a tightness in my chest and throat, and feeling like I wanted to cry at the beginning of each school year. Going out for recess brought up those same feelings. 

I experienced those same feelings years later at the beginning of each semester at college, going to job interviews, starting new jobs, going to meetings and in many other situations. 

Experiencing nervousness before new situations is something a lot of people experience, so I never thought anything of the feelings I was having. I just thought I was a shy introvert.

But over the last three years, I began to experience that feeling - tightness in my throat and chest, trouble breathing and the feeling of tears pushing their way to the surface - almost daily. Each morning, as I walked from my car to my office.

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Over a year ago, I went to an energy worker for some insight into the feelings I was having. She talked a lot about the throat chakra, and suggested that I wasn't speaking my truth about something related to my job. 

I knew exactly what she was talking about, and it was the first time I realized how much of an impact my job was having on my physical, emotional and mental health. 

But I just kept pushing ahead...mostly because I didn't feel safe talking about what was happening at work with the appropriate person. Nothing changed, and the feelings I was having in the morning began happening throughout the day. 

I left my job six weeks ago, and the day after I left I had my first appointment with a therapist. I described the feelings that I had been having for all those years.

Her: "Would you describe yourself as an anxious person?" 

Me: "No. I'm not a high energy person. I'm very even and mellow most of the time."

Her: "What do you think those feelings were that you were having every morning as you walked into your office?"

Me: ".......anxiety."

Her insight hit me like a ton of bricks. I never realized that the feelings that I had been having for all of those years was anxiety. 

Now, it makes sense that over the past few years I've come to rely so much on yoga, meditation and my spiritual practice. I needed it to cope. 

Thankfully, now that I'm no longer at my job, I don't experience anxiety often. When I do, like before the networking event, I'm aware of what's happening in my body and I have the tools to get through it. 

I'm sharing my story with you because this is what living a holistically healthy life is all about. Being healthy isn't just about drinking green smoothies, eating chia seeds and going to the gym. It's about noticing what's going on in your body, and creating change to feel your best. 

It took me far too long to make the changes necessary for me to feel healthier and happier, which solidifies my belief that asking for help can make all the difference in the world. I tell people all the time that having someone to guide and support you can be the thing that allows you to create real change, and I didn't take my own advice. 

The beauty of being a health coach is that I'm also on a journey to living my healthiest and happiest life. 

Want to know more about how a health coach can help you live your healthiest and happiest life? Sign up here. 

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