Sad Truths About Being An Adult With Anxiety

You’re going to grow familiar with the art of the apology.

And even if your apologies are genuine, some people aren’t going to forgive you. They’re going to hold the times you bailed against you, even if you had a good reason. Even if it was impossible for you to climb out of bed that day, let alone answer a text or meet up for dinner. Sometimes your anxiety is going to cause you to disappoint the people you never wanted to hurt, and even though it’s not your fault, it is your responsibility to deal with the aftermath, the hurt feelings, the guilt.

You have way more responsibilities as an adult, which could worsen your anxiety.

You might have hoped that your anxiety would go away once you were older and got used to living this way. But the older you get, the more you’re meant to do on your own. You can’t rely on your parents to make appointments for you or do the talking for you in social situations. You have to set your own schedule and advance your own career and hold your own conversations. Things might have actually gotten harder as the years have passed, but you can’t let that get you down. You have to remember that you’re taking on so much more today than you did yesterday. That’s why everything feels so overwhelming. You haven’t gone backwards. You’re simply taking on more.

You’re going to have to learn to hype yourself up.

When you’re younger, you might have people around who are going to encourage you to open up, who are going to push you to achieve your dreams, who are going to remind you that you have what it takes when you’re scared to leave your comfort zone. But when you’re older, you won’t always have someone around to hype you up, so you’re going to have to do it yourself. You’re going to have to remember that you’ve been in tough spots before and have made it through. And you can do it again. You might be scared, you might be shaking, but you have what it takes. You do.

You need to be gentle with yourself – but also brutal with yourself.

You need to learn to differentiate between the days when your anxiety is manageable and you can push through the pain – and the days when you genuinely need a mental health break and should stay home and rest. You need to be gentle with your mental health so you don’t burn out, but you also need to fulfill all of your responsibilities in order to survive. That means you need to figure out how to balance everything in a healthy yet productive way – and that takes time to learn. It takes trial and error.

You need to take it upon yourself to search for help.

When you were younger, you might not have realized you had anxiety. You might not have known why your heart was pounding so fast and your palms were getting so sweaty at the thought of certain tasks. But now that you’re older and know yourself better, you need to take better care of yourself. Whether you attend therapy, take medication, or simply download meditation apps and learn grounding exercises on your own, you need to do something to make your life easier. You need to treat your mental health as a priority, even when it’s inconvenient.

Anxiety Makes Me Feel Like An Idiot

Anxiety is that voice that keeps me up late at night when all I want to do is sleep.

It’s knowing nothing about me is normal. Even when I try so hard to be.

Anxiety is like a highlight reel of my life on rewind but the only parts that play are the mistakes I’ve made, the people I’ve hurt and the things I’ve done I haven’t forgiven myself for.

It makes me feel like an idiot when I know normal people aren’t hung up on something that happened five years ago.

Anxiety is the ruthless critic that I’ll never be good enough for.

Because no matter what I do or say or achieve anxiety counters it with an insult.

And I believe it.

It’s hard enough being good enough for others, it’s even harder being good enough for yourself when you are your own worst enemy.

Anxiety makes me doubt myself and doubt everyone around me.

From every word I say to every text I send to every email that goes out, triple checking it multiple times.

Anxiety makes me feel like an idiot not because I mess up but because I worry so much about mistakes.

Anxiety makes me think everyone is out to fuck me over when in reality that isn’t the case.

I know I have good friends, so why am I questioning and doubting them when they gave me no reason to? Why do I think everyone is going to leave me when they’ve stood by me for a decade.

But anxiety makes me feel like an idiot because I need to know things are okay. I need to know you aren’t mad at me. I need constant reassurance.

Anxiety has complete control over me.

It’s questioning every text and word and worrying to a point where emotional exhaustion is a real thing in my life.

It’s the apologizing too much and too often. Then when I try to explain to someone why I’m apologizing, as the words appear on the screen as I type them I think, “I sound like an idiot.”

Anxiety is the company at a party or in a crowd but drowning in negativity that’s inside my own head.

So I stay silent simply observing everything going on around me out of fear of saying and doing the wrong thing. Out of fear I shouldn’t be here or no one wants me here or I was invited out of pity. That’s what anxiety tells me.

It’s wanting to talk but not trusting myself enough to not say something stupid.

Anxiety makes me a paranoid fuck because I can tell when there’s the slightest shift in someone or in a relationship. And I try and fix it but only make things worse.

Anxiety is striving for perfection I know I’ll never achieve it. Anxiety taunts me for my failures while ignoring my success.

Anxiety makes up every worst case scenario that can happen and then it doesn’t and I tell myself you shouldn’t have gotten so worked up. But I did.

Anxiety makes me feel like an idiot for worrying as much as I do.

It’s constantly turning around to make sure that door is locked or that stove is off. Even though I have never left the stove on or door open. Anxiety tells me “what if” and I watch in my mind as something horrible happens.

Then I turn around and double check and yes, like every day before it’s fine.

Anxiety makes me feel like an idiot because I shouldn’t be like this. But I am. I care. I care about doing the right thing. I care about saying the right thing. I care about never hurting someone.

Anxiety makes me hyper aware of things because I care too deeply.

It makes me terribly insecure.

People with anxiety struggle to live in the moment because we are always dwelling in the past and worried about the future and I feel like an idiot because I’m trying to be as happy as everyone around me but I struggle.

Anxiety is breaking down because something didn’t go the way I wanted it to even though nothing ever does, I need that structure.

It’s the want and need to control everyone and everything because this thing controls me.

Anxiety makes me feel like an idiot because my mind can never be quiet and silence and peace of mind is something I’ll never achieve in life.

And maybe I think too much and am too hard on myself but at the end of the day I simply try and do my best and that’s all I can ask of myself even when anxiety tells me it’s not enough.