Dealing with anxiety and depression from adolescence can nearly ruin your life if you don't take control at some point! Better sooner than later. If you've never experienced a mental illness before, lets take a walk in my shoes to deepen your level of understanding. From early childhood, I remember being depressed to the point of developing extreme suicidal thoughts. Anxiety is no stranger to me either. I remember my second grade teacher telling my mother she thought something was wrong, because I was an extreme nail biter. I was placed in therapy in elementary school, because of "anger issues." I felt so lost, alone, unwanted, vulnerable, ugly, and worthless. I was angry, because I was sad so early in life, and misunderstood from the very beginning.
I had 3-4 therapists over the course of years that I went. None of them honestly didn't give two f*cks about me being OKAY, and I felt this as a child. I didn't open up to them. I'm not one to just open up about my feelings to people who don't genuinely care about me. Introverted to my very core, lol. On top of already feeling worthless, I was bullied consistently in school for numerous reasons. Being tall, having larger hands and feet than the other girls, having breasts early, being "ugly," not having a "video vixen" body, being smart, wearing glasses, breathing, lol.. and what ever other reasons people felt like harassing me for that day. It was exhausting. Being at a constant battle with yourself AND being misunderstood on top of that is.....exhausting at the very least.
My mother eventually saw that she was wasting her time taking me to therapy, lol because I was not talking to them. I didn't have a therapist that I was comfortable opening up to, or even know what I was supposed to be saying as a kid. I had no idea how to decipher my feelings and emotions and why I felt how I felt. I also had no idea how to communicate how I felt. I continued moving through life extremely sad, depressed, and still feeling useless. I wanted to end my life more than I wanted to live. I graduated high school and went off to college, now more lonely than ever being away from family and friends for the first time... I turned to alcohol and marijuana to cope with my added stress. In college, I began suffering from anxiety and panic attacks. I had never experienced or even heard of this prior to my experience, but it was scary to deal with alone. My anxiety attacks were so intense sometimes that I had convinced myself that I was losing my mind. Mental health should be discussed among the black community more than it is! I thought I was losing my mind when anxiety a common issue that people deal with on a daily basis.
It's crazy how you can be surrounded by so many people, but still feel so alone...
I stopped suffering from anxiety attacks and met the love of my life a few years later. After dealing with infertility and a chronic illness, mind was more tired than it's ever been. My anxiety was worse than it had ever been.
After serving a life sentence of pain, I turned to Yoga and Meditation to help soothe my mind. I was searching for a place of complete and utter peace.
Meditation is one of the best ways to cope with anxiety and depression! I started my meditation journey by doing a guided meditation, something that I had downloaded on my iPhone. I can admit that the first FEW times, I was like okay....what is the big deal about this crap?
I. COULD. NOT. FOCUS! I tried to be present in the moment and participate in the meditation session, but my mind was so clouded that I just had a million thoughts bombarding my mind, lol. I only did a few sessions before I stopped doing it, because I figured, what's the point if I can't focus? Later, I learned that this is fine.. It's completely fine to have thoughts flowing during your meditation session. The goal is not to completely drown out thoughts, but to gain awareness, focus, and consciousness. I learned to simply acknowledge the thoughts and to let them flow, not getting caught up on them or bashing myself for thinking.
Practice makes perfect, and meditation is not excluded from that equation! It takes consistent practice to become more conscious during your meditation session's. Practice is required when practicing any new craft!
Meditation Saved Me From the Life Sentence That I Was Serving... The life sentence of sadness, depression, feeling unworthy, failure, guilt, and anger. Meditation is my one of my coping mechanism's when I feel sad, angry, need guidance, or when I need to clear my mind. Meditation doesn't have to be a long and drawn out session of intensely focusing. Meditation can simply be taking time out of your day to take a few deep breaths and gather your thoughts in silence, and it's as simple as that. You can meditate in your car before you go into work, in the restroom on the toilet, in bed before you go to sleep, or a dedicated area in your home or office. Meditation is not one particular way of doing things, but it's about what YOU want to make it.
I want to challenge you, if you do not currently meditate to try it for 5 days and see how your life improves. You can type in "guided meditation" or just "meditation music" on Youtube and find a video that suites you, and get down to business.
You may be asking... Why on earth would I do a 5 day meditation challenge? Well, because you're going to benefit from it! Especially if you suffer from anxiety and depression. Taking a few deep breaths and grounding your thoughts can make a world of a difference in you keeping your composure in stressful situations. Meditation can assist you in healing from childhood trauma's, understanding your emotions, increasing your self-awareness, gaining new perspectives, reducing negative emotions, increasing patience, improves your focus, strengthens your memory, plus more!
When I say meditation freed me from a life sentence, I am not lying! I meditate regularly during the week, but one of my short term goals is to make this a daily habit in the morning as well as at night. I truly wish that I was introduced to meditation earlier in life, because it could've saved me from a world of trouble lol. Better late than never! Now that I have knowledge about how to free my mind, I implemented into my life and now I'm sharing the knowledge with you! I have never felt more free in my life. I have never been able to control my emotions like I can today. When something happens to make me mad, I go meditate and I'm fine afterwards every time. It's something about retreating to your safe space to release and to recharge!
I just gave you the information that you need to start your meditation journey, so please take my word from it and free your mind as well. Meditation has changed my life, and I will continue to strengthen my practice and reap the benefits of it! I encourage you to do the same. Be blessed and have a great day. Thank you for spending ADayWithBae!