Need a little anxiety advice

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by Californiablonde, Oct 3, 2014.

  1. Californiablonde

    Californiablonde Well-Known Member

    So most of you know I've been battling some pretty bad anxiety issues most of my life. Sometimes there are certain triggers, like a lot of noise or crowded stores, but more often than not I am getting random panic attacks all day long for no apparent reason. When the anxiety hits at home I usually help myself by going on long walks outside with music, taking drives down by the beach, or sitting in a tub full of warm water at night time.

    My techniques are pretty helpful and I rarely get really bad panic attacks at home anymore. My problem is at work. I am usually fine in the morning when I'm busy, but when my work slows down around 1:00 in the afternoon my anxiety level skyrockets. I can count on it coming on like clock work every single darn day and I'm getting rather sick of it. I'm usually stuck with bad anxiety symtoms for three hours till I can finally go home and take a hot bath or go for a walk. So do any of you have any suggestions for how to handle my anxiety while I'm sitting at my desk at work? I can't exactly take a walk, listen to music, or take a bath while I'm working. Right now I feel stuck with no relief in sight!
  2. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member

    Can you have a candle on your desk or even just something you can smell? Or wear a little perfume?

    Reason I ask is that Bergamot essential oil is wonderful for all this sort of thing. Great for depression, anxiety, mood, appetite, and other assorted things. You can go on ebay and buy a small bottle of bergamot essential oil for under $5 then put a few drops on a candle...or make your own light perfume to put on your wrists...just add maybe 5 drops to a tablespoon of light olive oil and dab that on several times a day then just sniff when you are feeling antsy.
  3. FlowerGarden

    FlowerGarden Active Member

    Try an herbal tea that is for calming or soothing or maybe a flavored coffee that you really enjoy.
  4. SuZir

    SuZir Well-Known Member

    Because you know the time the anxiety hits you are probably causing part of that anxiety by worrying it will hit. Could you change your routines at work a little bit around that time? It doesn't need to be anything big, just standing up and going to get a glass of water or cup of tea. Taking that time to check your emails or visiting some funny and work safe website, looking for funny cat videos on YouTube or something similar. Just changing little things around the time the anxiety tends to hit, because I suspect that having that anxiety is at this point a habit and to break a habit you need to create new ones.
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  5. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member

    Oh I forgot to say that earl gray tea has a ton of bergamot in it so you could just drink that.

    I am making a cute little "tea bag" soap thing with earl gray tea soap inside an organza bag with a string that has a little tag on the end saying what kind of tea it is. Looks just like large tea bags. I will probably do other teas too and I may see if I can find or make a better bag which would serve as more of a wash cloth type enclosure if people dont want to remove it from the bag. I could crochet the bags but that would make the soaps so high no one would want them. If I actually stuck to the one I saw on pinterest using guest sized soaps and tissue paper I could put them in a small box looking like you were getting 4 different types of tea for X amount of money. I will probably do that.
  6. Californiablonde

    Californiablonde Well-Known Member

    Thank you all for your advice. I do drink my Celestial Seasonings Tension Tamer tea at work and it helps take the edge off but not all the way. Janet the essential oils sounds like a wonderful idea. Do you know where I could buy some?
  7. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    Sprouts and Whole Foods carry essential oils, and ebay and amazon also have them. Bergamot isn't the only EO good for anxiety. Lavender is excellent for it also. Any scent that you find relaxing is also good.

    Be VERY careful with scents at schools. Here staff is not allowed to wear any strong scent, meaning if others can smell it you have to go and take it off. Why? It was causing a huge increase in asthma, allergy and migraine issues in the schools and esp in the offices.

    Tension Tamer Tea is excellent. I have had many people suggest Tazo's Calm Tea also. Personally, it tastes like weeds to me, but many people like it. While Starbucks sells Tazo tea by the cup and box, you can also find it at FAR better prices at the grocery store usually.

    Earl Grey has bergamot in it. I have found that the best brands, with a good bergamot flavor and not a rather insipid one are made by Stash and Tazo. Tazo is a lot more expensive than Stash around here. I don't really like the Bigalow brand of earl grey as it mostly tastes like Lipton tea that someone left in a container with a couple of bags of Stash's Earl Grey next to it. Panera sells that brand that comes in the round cans and is expensive as all get out. Their earl grey is okay, but Stash and Tazo are better and even Tazo costs less than those round cans do.

    What time is your lunch and what do you do at lunch? Do you eat a healthy lunch? Can you take a short walk or do a short meditation during lunch to prepare you for the afternoon? You can find guided meditations online and many can help you with anxiety. A walk or short workout may help. It will release excess energy, help build your stamina, and may release endorphins that will help you avoid the anxiety.

    How do you sleep? If you don't get a decent night's sleep, you will be far more prone to anxiety and panic attacks. You may need to talk to your doctor if you don't sleep well. A sleep study might be helpful too. Do you take some time each evening to do something to recharge your batteries, to relax yourself? How can you carve out 30 min to do something just for you? My family knows if I don't have that time alone, I am not fit to be lived with after a few days. My husband is the same way, and we have always worked to give each other that time. We also taught our kids to respect that time. We both figured that would cut down on the risk of child abuse, and no, I am far from joking. husband and I both have tempers, and anxiety, and if we don't manage them we can lash out. So by making sure we have what we need, we are better and safer parents and people.

    What do you really know about anxiety and how to cope with it? I know you have seen docs about it, but have you researched it on your own? It is really important to arm yourself with the right tools to handle any health issue, and you cannot find those tools without doing some research. The Anxiety and Phobia Workbook by Edmund J Bourne is incredibly helpful. It will teach you about anxiety and how to manage it. I found it very helpful for myself, for living with my kids and husband, and for coping with my mother especially.

    A lot of us here really belief in Cognitive Behavior Therapy. It can be incredibly helpful when dealing with a wide array of problems, esp anxiety. The Anxiety and Worry Workbook: The Cognitive Behavioral Solution by David A Clark and Aaron T Beck is also excellent. It does what it says - uses CBT to teach you to handle your anxiety. I think it might be of great help to you.

    Both books are quite affordable on amazon right now, and your local bookstore might also have them. Essential oils and teas etc.. are short term ways to help get through the fire, for long term solutions, please do some reading and the exercises recommended in the books or by your doctors. There really can be life with very few panic attacks and bouts of serious anxiety, but you have to work to build that life. These books really can help iwth that.
  8. Californiablonde

    Californiablonde Well-Known Member

    Thanks for the advice Susiestar I will try one of the books. I read a book called Feeling Good but it wasn't very helpful. I guess it's time to try something else.
  9. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    I read that book and found it useless also. The anxiety and phobia workbook only helps if you actually do the exercises even if they seem stupid at the time. Some did to me, but i stuck it out. It really did help a lot.

    I know you work with some people and know some others like your mom and ex who love to tear you down and tell you how bad you are at everything. been there done that and then I learned some things that helped me cope bettr with them. If they are tearing you down, it is because they feel bad about themselves and don't know any better.

    Years ago a really great therapist told me this:

    Imagine we each have a bucket inside of us. This bucket is how we feel about ourselves. WHen it is full, we feel really great and when it is empty we feel really bad about ourselves. We also have a ladle to fill or empty our bucket with. When the bucket is low, we can try to reach into another person's bucket to get their water to fill our bucket with. We do this by saying bad things about them. While we may get some of their water, we have to lean over so far to grab a ladle of their water that we spill whatever water is in our bucket, so we end up feeling worse about ourselves. When we take a ladle of our water and reach over to give it to someone, we end up not only NOT spilling our water, but finding our bucket has more water in it than it did before we gave some away. By giving of our water, we find we have more water, but by stealing others' water, we spill ours all out.

    It is a visual I have kept for many years. I can look at someone being ugly to me and while that hurts, it doesn't hurt as bad as it used to. I know that they are just futilely trying to fill their bucket and just making things worse. By responding with kindness, I end up feelign better about myself than if I ranted and raved at them.

    It takes time to make this a habit, but keeping those buckets in your mind's eye really does help. I also try to remember, esp with my gfgbro, that when he is ranting about how awful I am, he is actually saying what he things ABOUT HIMSELF. That took a LONG LONG TIME, but it really has helped me to realize that. in my opinion this is true about your mom too. Who taught you to be a mom and a woman? If she tells you that you are a failure, what is she saying about herself? She is probably not feeling good about herself deep down, and is just lashing out because she doesn't know how to cope. Remembering this may take some of the sting out of her words.

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  10. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member

    I saw something on TV yesterday and thought of you. They are doing clinical trials using mdma along with short term intensive therapy for severe anxiety and ptsd. You only use the mdma in the controlled setting with the dr. A lady on TV had 3 sessions and was cured. You would have to look for a place doing clinical trials though because its considered an illegal drug right now.