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Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Anxiety Waves

A brief hiatus from my hiatus.

As I am going through a few personal and professional changes, I've experienced more than my share of anxiety.  Yesterday I was trying to describe how this felt to myself, as I recently learned that your feelings drive your thoughts, and your thoughts drive your actions.  I know, I know, that's probably something that most "normal" people already know (the connection between feelings and actions), but it was something of a revelation for me.  Anyway, if I could better understand some of my feelings, I might be better able to understand how they impact my thoughts and actions.

Here's how I was able to describe how I've been feeling.

The anxiety* I've been feeling is like a series of waves.  A few weeks ago those waves were enormous.  I could see them coming, and they were so large that they towered over me.  They would crash into me, I'd be over my head in "water", and I'd struggle just to take a breath.  Just when I could regain my footing, I'd see another enormous wave coming my way, and the whole cycle would repeat again, and again and again.  

Over time these waves seem to have gotten smaller, and they come in with less frequency.  Towards the end of September, they seem to have gotten to the point where, when they would hit me, they weren't really that much over my head.  Yes, I'd get hit by the wave and it knocked me off balance a bit, but I no longer felt like I was drowning.  

Now?  Well I'm still getting hit by waves, but right now they seem to only come up to my chest.  I get unsteady has they hit and the undertow pulls at me, but by and large I'm able to hold my ground.  

I don't know what the next wave or waves will look like. The enormous ones could start again I suppose at any moment, but having been hit by them before, I'm thinking that I can withstand another barrage.  Time, however, will ultimately be the judge.

Have a learned something from all of this?  Absolutely.  But the verb "learned" is incorrect, at least in the context of tense.  I'm "learning".  Maybe, if there is a benefit to difficult times, it lies in the ability to learn from it all. 

(*) I'm using the term "anxiety" as something of a catch-all for a whole bunch of feelings.

1 comment:

J Curtis said...