My Recent Experience with Paralyzing Anxiety
Anxiety is a common struggle for people who undergo major stress. However, anxiety becomes paralyzing when it intensifies so much that a person loses the ability to function. In this post, I share my description of paralyzing anxiety and information about my experience with it. I also discuss coping methods that helped me get through paralyzing anxiety.
My Description of Paralyzing Anxiety
Paralyzing anxiety is like the effects of an intense Tetris game. In Tetris, a vertical rectangular board releases blocks with different shapes. As the blocks fall from the top of the board, I fit them together to clear horizontal lines. This requires me to move the blocks left or right and change their orientations. As I clear the lines, the blocks fall faster. The object is to clear the lines before one of the blocks reaches the top of the board. Sometimes I end the game early because the speed becomes too overwhelming.
Paralyzing anxiety is like the effects of an intense Tetris game because my thoughts race at overwhelming speeds. At first, I have one obsessive thought. But before I can process that thought, my mind generates a few more. As thoughts multiply at increasing speeds, it becomes harder to cope with them. Eventually, thoughts stack up so much that I cannot do anything. My thoughts continue to race, but my body freezes.
2 Personal Situations Led to Paralyzing Anxiety
I experienced paralyzing anxiety after a breakup and job resignation. First, I dwelled on activities I missed doing with my ex. Then I debated asking my ex to get back together, but I trembled at the fear of rejection. I also dreaded the idea of eventually dating new people. I imagined none of my future relationships would work out, and I would end up alone.
Additionally, I regretted quitting my job. I imagined life if I never received a new job. I told myself that if I couldn't receive a new job and excel at it, I would be a complete failure. Then I told myself that if this happened, I wouldn't deserve a happy future.
My thoughts were toxic, irrational, and false. I had coping skills to change them, but at the time, I didn't know which skills to use. For a while, I couldn't find the strength to use any skills. Thankfully, three coping methods eventually helped me overcome paralyzing anxiety.
2 Methods that Helped Me Overcome Paralyzing Anxiety
- I realized that I needed help. After sitting with my thoughts for several hours, I felt guilty for feeling so negative because life was precious. But my thoughts and reactions to difficult situations are affected by mood disorders. Realizing that I needed help led to healthier actions.
- I reached out to friends who related to my struggles. Thankfully, I have very supportive friends. Even though I felt really lonely, they reminded me that I was not alone and that I was strong. Some of them encouraged me to rely on faith, even though it was hard. This support and gentle advice gave me the momentum I needed to keep going.
My motivation to write this article was fueled by my ability to break through paralyzing anxiety. Many people share similar struggles. If you struggle with paralyzing anxiety, I hope some of my coping methods will help you through it.
Lueck, M. (2021, August 15). My Recent Experience with Paralyzing Anxiety, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2021, October 16 from https://www.healthyplace.com/blogs/toughtimes/2021/8/my-recent-experience-with-paralyzing-anxiety