I myself experience a great deal of anxiety, mine being mostly caused by gender dysphoria and fear of failure. But what is anxiety? What does this particular emotion mean?
The most common definition of anxiety is the feeling of worry and unease. But of course, that could just be anything right? The unease could just be sickness, the worry could just be having not seen your pet in a while. Anxiety, in my book of definitions, is the overwhelming feeling of panic. To describe it better, and what I at least experience, your chest begins to tighten and breathing turns frantic, your body starts to shake viciously and your mind goes cloudy (however this is not the case for everyone with anxiety). These are the most common effects of anxiety, sometimes your hands start to sweat and your vision can go blurry.
Now there is no saying that anxiety can’t be cured. I personally don’t believe it can, but I do believe you can learn to cope. Just about anything can be a coping method, as long as it distracts you from the terror that is anxiety. My method is blaring indie music into my ears and writing random stories. However, this may not work for everyone! Here are some methods I gathered up after asking friends and acquaintances about their methods.
Going For A Walk/Standing Outside
Does anyone else remember going up to your parents, telling them that you feel kind of sick or nauseous, and then your parents would say “some fresh air might do you some good.”? And you would roll your eyes because you were hoping they would let you off going outside and letting you go to bed. No, just me?
It just so happens however, they were right! Fresh air has become one of the most common methods of dealing with anxiety, considering the fact that anxiety tends to cause your body to overheat, the fresh air can help chill down your body and give you just that extra oxygen that you need.
One common factor that accompanies anxiety is stress, which leads to tense muscles and the feeling of overwhelming anger. One of the best way people find to release this anger, is by doing exercise.
Take a punching bag for example, what’s better than punching your problems out on something that doesn’t hit back? Along with your exercise you could set little goals that you can accomplish in that session, try and get to that little sense of accomplishment, make yourself feel good about yourself.
As I said previously, a method of coping with anxiety is music. Music has a magic inside it, it can make you feel all types of emotions, which essentially means there is at least one genre of music that may help you cope with your anxiety.
For me, the music I use are soft freedom sounds (e.g. Lana Del Rey, Ed Sheeran, The Script, Keaton Henson). These artists produce music that calms my body immediately upon hearing their music. However, some people feel calmer with rock music.
It’s a good idea to find ways to keep your breathing under control, especially when you start to hyperventilate. A way to do this I find is by breathing in deeply, holding it for a few seconds and then letting it all out as slow as you can.
Other ways are focusing on something that moves to the rhythm of your desired breathing rate, kind of like a rotating fan, when it rotates left you breath in, when it starts to rotate right, you breath out. You could also try counting to 7 in your head; breathe in deeply, count to 7, breath out slowly.
One of the most common solutions is medication. There are so many anti-anxiety medications out there that, it may take you a while to find the right one for you, but when you have it, it’s the most amazing thing. I take medication that is the mixture of an anti-anxiety and antidepressant. The medication helps take the edge off of the emotions, making it easier to cope with. Importantly you need to consult a doctor to find out what medication would be best for you.
When starting this type of medication, it does not necessarily work immediately, so do not fear if you do not see immediate results, your body is just taking time to get used to the new meds.
Anxiety is a serious sickness, one that needs not to be taken lightly. Many New Zealander’s suffer from it. But of course, need we suffer? I highly recommend trying out one of these methods when dealing with anxiety as it may just be the relief you need.
Author: Albion Haines
My name is Albion Haines, I am a 16 year old transgender male who is studying NCEA level 2 at the wonderful tertiary school, Capital Training. I really enjoy writing fictional stories, the creativeness I can throw into them is so much fun and I have so many ideas for short stories and possible books. I specifically like writing the genres Sci-fi, Crime and Gay Literature. Lately however I have been trying my hand at writing news reports of current world wide events and movie/tv show reviews. I am quite invested in the LGBTQ+ community as I am a gay transmale who wants to inspire others to not fear being who they are. I love learning about who people are and how they got through the struggles of being apart of this community. It’s refreshing to know I’m not the only one who struggled, as bad as they may sound. Last but not least, I really love animals! I have a 2 year old black and white fluffy cat named Loki who I adore so much. I cherish animals to the point where I could possibly enjoy their company more than some human beings.