7 Things That Helped Me Manage Both My Anxiety and Depression | Letting Go Of Anger, Releasing Negative Energy, and Overcoming Anxiety seems like a long title for this post.
I usually don’t share things like this so publicly but I know this struggle very well and want to share some resources and tools that have helped me.
I’m looking forward to reading your comments, too. If you have any tips, tools, and resource that you would like to share leave them in the comments as well.
Or if you would like to email me personally at firstname.lastname@example.org, use in the subject line: Letting Go.
Sometimes letting go happens in stages. Sometimes it means becoming more aware. Sometimes it involves going deeply into the feelings hidden underneath our behavior. Learning to let go may involve gaining more confidence and self-esteem. Sometimes it means simply practicing gratitude for the way things are. Be gentle with yourself and others as you learn to practice the language of letting go. Sometimes, no matter how much we know, letting go takes time. From More of the Language of Letting Go
2016 was the year from hell…
That’s putting it lightly. I experienced a lot of personal trauma within that 12 month period. Maybe one day we can get into it.
The main thing was the realization that I was in a toxic co-dependent relationship. Honestly, it wasn’t just one either. My life was filled with people who didn’t value me or reciprocate.
How did I get here?
By the time 2017 rolled around the only thing I knew was that I wanted to Let Go…
Let go of all the hurt, anxiety, depression, and negative energy. These things seemed to snowball into a big wad of grief that I could no longer distinguish who or what I was sad about.
I wasn’t exactly sure how and where to start. I was already in talk therapy which was a lifesaver. But I still found myself in a place of very little emotional support.
I knew I felt horrible. I heard Danielle LaPorte talk about Core Desire Feelings in her Desire Map course and planner. I lived in a constant state of sadness, anger, depression, and anxiousness. I needed to move out of this state which leads me to identify how I wanted to feel.
I usually choose a word of the year. But I expanded my word to a group of words that described the life I wanted. It was the beginning of my core belief system and values. Some of these words included powerful, strong, confident, creative, and happy. I didn’t actually believe them or feel them at the time but I was determined to get there.
I knew I didn’t have direct control over my anxiety and depression. So I started out with what I could control which was my physical health.
My Crossfit journey began about two years prior to moving to the Atlanta area. But I hadn’t found a Crossfit Box that I could call home. I knew I needed to find one. Crossfit was something that had conditioned me not only physically but also mentally and emotionally. Crossfit taught me to scale or modify workouts that I couldn’t physically do. I took this lesson into each area of my life. There was no need for negative self-talk when you know that you can modify your goals.
My first goal of 2017 was to find a Crossfit gym and join. I challenged myself to workout 3x a week for 30 days. This would give me a good idea if the gym was a good fit or if I needed to rearrange my schedule. I successfully completed this goal Feb. 2, 2017. I keep track of my goals using my Visionary Journal. I rewarded myself with a 90-minute massage.
Y’all self-care is important! (Try to fit some type of self-care daily. It could be going to bed early or meditating for 10-15 minutes.)
I’m happy to report I’ve successfully let go of a lot of these personal traumas and hurt. Here’s what I’ve learned.
1.) Acknowledge the Pain
Emotional wounds are not like physical wounds, they do not spontaneously heal. If you have a bruise or scratch, your body will naturally heal itself. In most cases, little or no interventions are necessary to encourage the healing process.
In order to heal emotional wounds, you must first acknowledge the wound or the pain.
2.) Give Yourself Permission to Heal
With emotional wounds, we don’t even give ourselves the opportunity to feel the hurt. We’ve been taught to mask or suppress emotional pain.
In addition to giving yourself permission to heal, you must acknowledge your pain. It’s ok to feel your feels!
Then give yourself permission to heal each emotional pain.
3.) Forgive Yourself
It’s very difficult to pour from an empty cup. Forgiveness is no different.
You can’t extend someone forgiveness if you’re unwilling or unable to first forgive yourself.
Even if you’re betrayed, it’s not your fault but it is your responsibility to forgive yourself for the role that you played. Maybe you didn’t speak up or you turned a blind eye to your betrayer. No matter what it was you have to accept that it did in fact happen.
Also, acknowledge each act and do not make excuses for anyone. It’s easy to get caught up in other’s intent. You can’t hold people accountable for their intent only their actions.
Accept, Acknowledge responsibility, and Forgive yourself. This is the clearest path to healing!
4.) Set Your Intention and Take Action
You may not know where to start or how exactly to let go. Letting go can mean many different things to different people. Maybe you want to let go of hurt, a toxic relationship, or limiting mindset; regardless of the object, the process is the same.
You must set your intention to do so. In setting your intention, you are not only making up your mind to let go, but you are also giving the universe permission to assist you in the process. Resources and tools will come your way to help.
5.) Create Letting Go Habits
You will also need to incorporate practices or mantras in your daily life that make letting go a continuous exercise. Some of the things I incorporated were physical fitness works, meditation, journaling and professional counseling.
I highly recommend the daily devotion of More of The Language of Letting Go.
Letting go is an exercise that you perfect over time with practice. It may not come naturally, initially, but keep at it and one day you will notice that the hurt, disappointment, and anger are all gone!
6.) Set Boundaries
Many of us are not taught how to set boundaries or to enforce them. I grew up in a southern black family. I was expected to be seen and not heard. A lot of these lessons were taken into adulthood. I would let my ‘elders’ disrespect me and belittle my feelings. It wasn’t until I learned to use my voice and place boundaries did I feel more in control of my life.
I recommend reading the book: Boundaries. They also have Boundaries in Parenting and Marriage which are also great reads.
7.) Seek Professional Counseling or Therapy
Counseling and therapy still seem to be taboo in many communities. I know for me personally, I felt like I need others to affirm and validate my decision to seek out a mental health professional.
I’m thankful that I didn’t wait for these things. I’m also grateful to every woman that has normalized therapy.
I truly believe everyone can benefit from it.
I’ll leave you with this from More of The Language of Letting Go.
Sometimes letting go happens in stages. Sometimes it means becoming more aware. Sometimes it involves going deeply into the feelings hidden underneath our behavior. Learning to let go may involve gaining more confidence and self-esteem. Sometimes it means simply practicing gratitude for the way things are. Be gentle with yourself and others as you learn to practice the language of letting go. Sometimes, no matter how much we know, letting go takes time.
Tools and Resources Mentioned