Tanya J. Peterson, MS, NCC
If you live with any amount of anxiety, chances are you don't think of it as beneficial. After all, anxiety has many unpleasant symptoms and negatively impacts our entire being--thoughts, emotions, bodily sensations, and behaviors. Anxiety most definitely gets in the way of our ability to create and live our lives. Yet anxiety offers some positives and in some ways can be an asset to our lives. Here are three surprising benefits of anxiety to consider so you can use this nuisance to your advantage.
Overthinking is often held responsible for causing anxiety and vice versa, and it should be. However, I recently realized that overthinking and depression can be problematic too.
I’m sure I’m not the only one who feels an almost permanent sense of inferiority because of my anxiety; if I were to guess, I’d say that’s common across the board for the mentally ill. That sense of inferiority often makes me feel like a hypocrite. After all, on this very blog, I have, from the very beginning, been a vocal proponent for more acceptance towards the mentally ill, both in terms of society at large and among the mentally ill themselves. This sense of inferiority would suggest that I still see myself as somewhat lesser than my mentally healthy counterparts, and there is truth to that. In this blog, I want to explore this in a bit more detail.
My current boyfriend was arrested for a non-violent crime 12 days ago. I'm not sure if I should be embracing this newfound freedom from the occasional verbal abuse he inflicted on me, or maybe it's okay to experience heartache. But how I am "supposed" to feel doesn't really matter -- in a unique situation like this, what counts is the emotions that I am experiencing: I feel lonely and distraught.
When I first stumbled upon actress and activist Jameela Jamil's "I Weigh" social media account two years ago, I breathed an audible sigh of relief. Here was a celebrity using her enormous platform to raise awareness to the overlooked truth that humans are worth more than the size and shape of their bodies.
Nori Rose Hubert
Real talk: when it comes to time management, I don't have the best track record. While most people can benefit from improved time management skills, keeping track of time and using it productively seems to be the bane of bipolar existence.
Resiliency is the ability to bounce back from a situation that throws you off, and there's a direct correlation between it and self-esteem. When your self-esteem is strong, you have the confidence to leave your comfort zone because you aren't worried about your ability to recover if things go south. You can build healthy self-esteem by focusing on improving your resiliency.
I've never really thought that feeling numb was a problem for me. I've always had issues with feeling too much. Even when I'm depressed, I don't usually relate to the emptiness that many others describe. Even my depression is full of emotions, from self-loathing to existential dread. But over the last few years, I have learned to cope with my depression better and better, so when those depressive emotions resurface, I panic and try to shove them away. Which is why, after years of depression and anxiety, I am just now starting to experience numbness.
Building strong self-esteem is easier when you take the time to build a set of life goals that define your personal vision of success. Goals provide us with direction and help clarify the changes we need to make in our journey to healthy self-esteem.
I spoke a little bit in my last video post about how my family all had different ways of supporting my mentally ill brother when he was first diagnosed with anxiety and depression. What started as a reason to argue has turned into one of our greatest strengths as a family – how lucky are we to have so many different types of support to offer our loved one and each other?