So at pretty much the very start of university, I bought a book titled How To Master Anxiety by Joe Griffin and Ivan Tyrrell, I was still quite mixed up and wanted to have a book with me which would literally be to hand and offer me advice and as I've never actually sat down and read a book regarding mental health and anxiety. The closest book I've ever read to any kind of self-help book is Demi Lovato's Staying Strong 365 Days, which one of my best friends gave me as a present just under 2 years ago. I was in Waterstones and there were some other interesting looking books looking into anxiety but determined not to spend too much money, I went for How To Master Anxiety.
I've not properly read every single chapter yet, but there was one chapter which really seemed to click with me and made me understand a bit better some of the little itty struggles I may have.
It is all about the powerfulness of the amygdala, a little part of the brain which is an emotional part of the brain. It stores information from our unconscious thoughts and remembers them, meaning that experiences or anything to do with those experiences are stored. So if any part of the experience is suddenly remembered or triggered or matches a situation you've been in before, it sets you off feeling anxious.
This is definitely something which applies to me which is extremely annoying as personally for me, my amygdala manages to remember even the littlest of things, even stuff like what I'm wearing or what I've eaten and I've got to remind myself that certain things are not the cause of my anxiety and should not worth getting so stressed over. Sometimes I do find myself avoiding certain clothes or even makeup items because my amygdala has stored them as being part of a stressful scenario (even when they had nothing to do with it) Also means sometimes I'll avoid wearing some of my favourite stuff just in case I trigger something and then my amygdala does remember it for the wrong reason.
For others it could be particular routes or places which their minds might have registered, I always remember Zoe aka Zoella mentioning in her Anxiety video that she used to have panic attacks in Paddington train station, because one time she had one and they kept recurring and returning.
It's incredible that the mind is so powerful and clever to manage to remember all of these things however it is also incredibly annoying too if it is causing you uncomfortable and unwanted thoughts!
I'm not sure if any of this is making sense but it may if you are suffering.
It's something that I'm still working on and trying to improve with myself as I really wish to be able to live a more free and funfilled life, without having annoying little thoughts taking up space and taking the joy out of everything! It's constantly an aim of mine to just work past everything. I wish to be able to do what I want without my amygdala failing me and making me question and second guess what I want/should do.
Dealing with thoughts like this is something you have to do at your own pace, do what you feel comfortable, aim to push yourself but don't aim to push yourself too far too fast. I've dealt with a bad case of unwanted thoughts before which I've not really talked about on here yet but I feel like if you try and read loads of positive words or quotes to try and overbalance the negative ones, it could have an effect. For example, maybe write a list of all of the little achievements you've managed and maybe do a little pinboard of quotes or pictures which remind you of the achievements. I find that following quote pages on Instagram is a great way to start the day with a mindful quote in your brain which can give you a lease of life for the start of the day.
Some I'd recommend are:
I'd love to hear any comments you may have!
I hope you're well doing really well!
Love & hugs,