Anxiety is not a personality trait

I had someone say to me, “maybe you can’t do this because of your anxiety.” It made me stumble, my words were caught in my throat. Like did this person truly believe that was an appropriate statement? I get it. Anxiety can be debilitating. I live with it. Hell I’ve lived with it for as long as I can remember. But I’m treating it now, I’ve literally had only 1 or 2 anxiety attacks in the past year. My emotions fluctuate, but trust me my personality doesn’t change. Nor is anxiety my personality. I have anxiety. I’m treating it.

There are anxious people in the world, I know, but when my anxiety is under control I am not one of those people. I am happy, chippy, friendly, and goofy. Go look at my daughter’s snap chat. She catches me doing embarrassing things all the time.

I recently watched a TED video on OCD. It was educational and I learned a lot, but one thing the speaker preached was how she learned to work WITH it versus treating it. That’s great. I’m happy that works for her. She went on about how it made her who she is and how successful she is today. My anxiety made me a great student as well. It made me careful and not take too many risks. It also made me angry. It made me yell. Throw things. Say hurtful words that I didn’t mean or that I did mean but didn’t mean to say aloud. It caused me sleepless nights. Missed opportunities. Loss of possible friendships. I can go on and on. My point is, everyone is different. Weigh out the pro’s and con’s. For me treatment made my life substantially better. Yes I’m far more lax now. I procrastinate and don’t care about every single detail. But I’m happy. I’m easier to be around. And I have the ability to be far more objective in my thinking.

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