If you’re reading this, you probably have anxiety too, which means you already know: It’s the absolute frickin’ worst. Although there are ways to manage anxiety, it’s often hard to put into words exactly what it feels like. This, friends, is why GIFs were put on this Earth.
For me, anxiety can show up and impact absolutely anything. For example, I can’t watch suspenseful movies or television shows that haven’t already aired because anxiety will drive me to Google what happens next—specifically if I suspect someone is about to die. Even though they tend to be imaginary characters, it’s utterly stress-inducing, and knowing the answer is the only remedy.
The other fun part about anxiety is that it can show up at the most inopportune times, and you basically just have to ride the wave. I could be running an innocuous errand, and suddenly I’ll be stricken with a bout of anxiety about whether or not the grocery clerk got a peepshow since my shirt button had at some point in the day, decided to mysteriously burst open to reveal my bra, totally unbeknownst to me.
This endless, nagging worry about what other people think about you can get to the point where you don’t even want to go out at all anymore. Yet people still insist on inviting you to things, which you know, is nice, but you usually stare at the texts like:
On other occasions, you muster up the courage to brave the world after all. You get dressed (like in real clothes, not pajamas) and approach the door… only for anxiety to win once again. You decide that Netflix sounds way better than human interaction:
Every now and then the high-functioning side of you prevails. You look anxiety in the face and declare:
Or have a conversation with all of your insecurities and doubts to let the voices in your head know they are wrong:
There are ways to manage being anxious, like taking a minute to breathe and really be in the moment, as opposed to letting self-destructive thoughts get the best of you.
And once you do, nothing beats that moment of Zen when the anxiety has passed, and you can get back to being your fabulous, self-assured self:
But if breathing techniques and mental exercises fail you as weapons in the battle against anxiety, there’s always those herbal remedies that many choose to rely on…Jagger Blaec is a freelance professional journalist located in Portland, Oregon. The views expressed herein are hers. Keep up with her on Twitter @basicblaecgirl.