Written by Mikaela Gantz
Post-midterms I thought I would write an article about one way I cope with anxiety. This is simply my experience with it, it’s not meant to diminish anyone else’s.
As someone with an anxiety disorder, it’s fair to say anxiety plays a role in my life. Because of this, I deal with anxiety in some… interesting ways. Some of my friends have witnessed one of my favorite ways to deal with anxiety, “floor time.” I would say that it’s properly termed. It is simply time on the floor. I lay down, calm my breathing, and try not to think about anything. I often do this when I have a lot to do and I find myself getting overwhelmed. For me it often dissuades panic attacks because it tells my body to relax. Deep breathing and water are two ways to remind my body that everything is alright. So while it may seem counterintuitive, when I’m very busy I often take a five minute break to lie on the floor. It allows my body and mind to recalibrate and instead of a million irritating thoughts per second, I get a handful of manageable ones. Many of my friends have witnessed this phenomenon. I actually think it’s a tell-tale sign that I trust someone if I’m comfortable having floor time in front of them. So if you’ve seen me exasperatedly sigh then lay face down on the floor, congrats?
The whole point of this article is; anxiety is kinda dumb, but it is such a huge part of my life, and a significant part of most peoples. It’s what keeps us alive in some ways. I’m worried about speeding because I don’t want to hurt myself or anyone else while driving my car (or dare I say get a ticket). Thus, I don’t speed, and I prevent the situation from arising in some ways (you can’t control everything though).
Anxiety is something that I used to hide. I thought it meant I was weak, incapable of being successful, and ultimately a failure. None of that is true. In some ways anxiety makes me stronger. I do better in class, on essays, tests, and academically in general in part because my anxiety pushes me to. This isn’t a bad thing. Anxiety is something that messes up my life sometimes, in serious ways. Getting panic attacks isn’t an easy thing to deal with, I know from personal experience. I don’t want to diminish anyones struggles with mental health, everyone is unique and how I experience anxiety might be completely different from how you do. What I am saying though, is that regardless of one’s mental health issues, they shouldn’t be ashamed. I’m not saying tell the whole world, I’m saying find a few people you can trust and tell them. It helps other people understand you better, and love and care for you in a way that if they were unaware of your mental health they might not be able to do.