Yesterday I experienced anxiety like never before. I’ve been worried…I have had my share of fear…but as the eye of Hurricane Irma approached my dad and his home, my fears skyrocketed! My heart raced. The tears flowed. All I wanted to do was curl up in bed and pray the time would pass quickly.
This morning my fears were relieved when my dad texted me to say that he is safe.
I can’t help but think of those who live with debilitating anxiety on a regular basis. One day was enough to rock my world. For those of us who don’t struggle with this, it is easy to say “Be anxious for nothing but in everything with prayer and supplication submit your requests to God,” or to offer pithy responses.
Believe me, if I could have “snapped out of it” yesterday, I would have. The same is true for others. It is important not to let fear paralyze us – not to give in to the temptation to pull the covers over our head and hide from the world. We have to do the things we need to do…despite our fear.
One thing I learned yesterday was that watching the news fueled my anxiety. I had to turn of the television and turn to the Lord. Sometimes we have to identify our triggers, for me it was the weather channel, and find ways to either avoid them or to cope with them. While some of us are able to use coping skills to regulate our emotions, others may benefit from medication. Click here for more on how to know if medication is needed.
This month is Mental Health Month. Why not make a commitment this month to do something to improve your own mental health? This could be practicing a time of solitude, meditating daily on the scriptures, exercising to increase your brain’s health, or spending time with a friend. What will you do?