What are your best qualities?

There are always times when we all feel down and, for lack of better words, beat ourselves up. In the past, there have been times where I could hardly look in the mirror because I was so angry with myself. I truly think we are often times too hard on ourselves. We beat ourselves up over small things, and some not so small things, but honestly, I believe we are all trying our best in the situations we are in.

If you are feeling down about yourself I want you to write down at least one thing you like about yourself. ANYTHING! Each day, add one more item to the list, and soon you will see you have many wonderful qualities about yourself!

If you would like to comment below and leave some things you like or even love about yourself, feel free! We should share our self love!! 🙂

Here are my top three:
1. I like my excitement about life
2. I have a huge imagination
3. I have pretty amazing hair

The Holiday

Whenever I watch the Holiday, with Kate Winslet and Cameron Diaz, I always feel so romantic and festive! It is such an incredible movie! My mother has NEVER seen it, so I quickly changed that, and we are watching it now!

I highly recommend it!

Nothing is ever wasted

In the years prior to my knowledge of my anxious affliction (college and before) I had several periods of darkness. If you have never experienced anxiety, there is a point where the anxious feelings have become so consuming that there is literally nothing else you can think about. Your mind is trapped in an endless cycle of fear and panic. Even if you are out with friends, or doing something you love, you are numb to all good feelings. It’s a hard thing to explain, but that’s my best shot.

Now, I have had 2 major episodes with the anxiety darkness. The first incident lasted for almost three consecutive years. I had no idea what was happening to me, I just knew I didn’t feel right. I retreated from my friends and family and packed on the pounds. After I realized the cycle of anxiety was not normal, I briefly took some medication and went to counseling. To this day, I struggle with looking at photographs from my last two years of college without triggering my anxiety. Currently, I am working on facing these emotions head on, but I will get to that in a moment.

The second episode was last year (six years later). My anxiety manifested itself in the form of panic attacks, which were new, and I had no clue what was going on. It was utterly terrifying. This episode only lasted 6 months instead of 3 years. I am now taking medication again and I have been feeling back to myself! Yay!

Now, looking back on these times, especially my college experience, I feel like I wasted a lot of my life. Years actually. I had so many amazing opportunities that I missed out on because I was anxious. It hurts to think about all the things I could have done instead of shutting myself off from everyone, and I feel the physical ache in my stomach.

However, I am learning that NOTHING that you go through in life is a waste! NOTHING! These difficult times that I have experienced in my life has now helped me become an outspoken advocate for mental health awareness. I am able to share my story with my co-workers and students and help them in their own journeys. I am working hard to take these negative feelings about my past and mold them into positive ones!

Remember, there is nothing in your life that is wasted. All the experiences you have been through have made you who you are and God has a plan for you. Don’t give up hope

Blogging has helped me heal

I am so thankful that I finally decided to create the Persistent Platypus. I had been wanting to start a blog for years, but I never had the courage until this year.

Dealing with a mental disorder can be a very lonely battle. There are so many stigmas attached to mental illness that people are hesitant to open up about their struggles. I never told anyone about my battles until A few years ago. I didn’t want to be judged or stereotyped. However, all of you have changed that for me. You have accepted me for who I am and have left encouraging posts to urge me towards recovery.

Thank you for taking time to read what I have to say, and share your own experiences. I look forward to sharing my journey with you all!

Think about What You are Thinking About

A positive life is built on the foundation of positive thoughts. If our thoughts are clouded by negativity, it is impossible to live a positive life. Our actions are reflections of our thoughts, so if you think poorly about yourself then your actions will demonstrate that. If you hate your job, your actions
will reflect those thoughts. People can sense if we are optimistic or pessimistic people almost instantly. It can be draining to be around someone who is always upset about something and people may start to avoid you if you are a negative person.

When my anxiety was at its height, I was stuck in the endless cycle of negative thinking and my life seemed to be crumbling around me. However, I decided I didn’t want to live like that anymore. I spent a lot of time reading my bible and filling my brain with positive thoughts! Guess what?! My world became a little brighter one thought at a time. 🙂

Today, pay attention to what you are thinking. Try to change a negative thought to a positive one.

Have an awesome day!

No one can steal your joy!

Remember this: No one can steal your joy unless you allow them. There are always going to be people who upset you. There will always be circumstances we can’t control. Life is full of things we have no say over. However, the good news is that we have control over our responses. We have a say in how we react. When something doesn’t go your way, don’t give in to negativity. Tell yourself that this may not be how I wanted my day to go, but I am bigger than my circumstances. I am strong and I will make the choice to be joyful no matter what!

Remember, joy doesn’t have to mean happiness. If you are in a dark situation you can still have joy. You can hope for healing and have faith that your trial will come to pass. That is true joy. Never giving in when all seems hopeless.

Have a wonderful Monday!

Growing Healither Everyday!

Everyday I find myself experiencing more and more personal victories that I never thought I would be able to reach. One of my most difficult anxiety triggers is traffic jams, and today I was stuck in a HUGE one. It took us 2 hours to go 14 miles! We had just driven onto the highway when we realized that traffic was stopped. Literally, we had to put our work van (since we were heading out on a business trip) in park for 10 or minutes at a time! People around us were going crazy, jumping out of their cars, driving on the median, cutting people off and driving across to the other side of the highway to get out of the traffic. Being a mature and law abiding citizen, I did none of these things, well I should say my husband did none of these things. He was lucky enough to be chosen to go on this training with me. I feel very blessed that he was able to go on this trip with me this time because being around him helps me feel calm and peaceful.

When I first saw the endless line of shining vehicals, as far as my eyes could see, anxiety immediatly clawed at my chest. I felt the rising panic threatened to send me into hysterics, but I was on a work outing and I couldn’t let anyone see the terror in my eyes. I keep practicing my self talk and told myself over and over that I would be ok and that I would not be stuck in the traffic forever. It will pass. Slowly the itching panic began to subside and was replaced with calm. Even though we were stuck in the car for two hours, only going 10 miles on hour, I never complained. I whinned a little, but only about how frustrating it was. I remember times in the past where I had full on fits or panic attacks when I was stuck in traffic. BUT! God has brought me so far along in my healing and I am so thankful! It was a huge test to be able to pass and I am exstatic!