The Worry Monster has moved in
Author: Jenny T
My anxiety levels are through the roof again. And it ain’t funny. There is Nothing wrong, however my worry nerves are jingling and jangling, I’m physically shaking and I just want to cry. All. Day. Long. (All Night Long would get sorted by Lionel Richie…)
Out of the blue, I feel like I’ve been hit by a high-speed train. Yesterday I was absolutely fine. Today the very thought of leaving the security of my comforting nest fills me with dread. But where has it come from?
Yes, I’m juggling, like we all are, but nothing like I used to. The boy wonder is at uni, my job is relatively easy, the bills are under control. But the tiniest thing can send me into apoplexy and it’s just not rational. I worry over small things, big things, every thing!
My boiler went disastrously wrong on Friday, (which caused a sleepless night) but I got it fixed on Saturday. I had 18 people round on Sunday who I had to feed and drink, which threw me into a blind panic, but it went like a dream (thanks to help and support from some lovely friends).
This morning I woke up soaking wet (again) with the absolute belief that I cannot do my job anymore. So I don’t want to go to work. And then there’s the ongoing paranoia – why hasn’t my friend called back? Have I upset her? Why hasn’t my partner said anything nice to me for a while? Am I unattractive? Does my boss think I’m rubbish at my job? Was that ‘girl’ in for an interview to replace me? Dread. Fear. Irrational rubbish. All caused by our lovely Menopause.
Mind you, apparently we just had a TERRIBLE New Moon, which seemed to knock a lot of people sideways. That has passed but you may still feel dented and a bit broken, I know I do.
How do we reduce our anxiety and stop the panic setting in so we can go about our every day lives without that feeling of being out of control?
Here, hopefully, are some coping strategies which I am trying to keep in place and not let ‘life’ stop me having time to keep these and lean on them when I need them.
1. Understand that you are not the only one feeling like this. The likelihood is that your womenfolk are going through exactly the same thing. Talk to them. Girly therapy, and sharing, is the best. Even a good cry with a friend holding your hand can make you feel a whole lot better.
2. Watch your alcohol intake – a couple of glasses of wine or gin makes everything feel better at the time, but the after-effects of alcohol can only make everything worse and even trigger anxiety.
3. Try yoga or meditation. Going to a yoga class with women of a similar age and staying ‘on your mat’ does help – mentally and physically.
4. When anxiety hits – sit down close your eyes and take some deep breathes. Try these breathing exercises by BeingEve. Run your wrists under cold water and put a cold flannel on your forehead and the back of your neck. Try to relax.
5. Let your close friends know how you are feeling. If you just don’t feel you can face something then just explain. We all have bad days and some days you just can’t do it.
6. Seriously look at CBD oil – but the purest you can buy. CBD oil comes from industrial hemp also known as hemp, cannabis with sub categories such as marijuana. There are many ways in which you can take it, a drop under the tongue, a spray in to the mouth, via a vape, topically rubbed into the skin, or taken as a capsule. You can also take it as gummy bears! Take advice (more on here later) and do try it. See if it works for you.
7. And ff you just need a cuddle, ask for one. If you need a little push to get you out the door, ask for one.
The most important thing is to be kind to yourself. Remember you ARE amazing. Don’t beat yourself up and don’t try to do too much and remember it will pass. Like a storm. Like labour. I don’t know where this quote comes from but it is lovely: “When you’re in a dark place, you sometimes tend to think you’ve been buried. Perhaps you’ve been planted. Bloom.’