Guest post by Marie Miguel of Betterhelp.com
Anxiety is a pervasive condition where you have worries that come seemingly out of nowhere.
When you’re anxious, you’re concerned about something terrible happening. You might experience an overwhelming sense of dread, or you may suffer from panic attacks, which can be debilitating.
Everyone experiences anxiety differently, and living with anxiety is severe, but having an anxiety disorder doesn’t mean that you lack confidence or that you can’t grow to be more confident in yourself if you aren’t already. Having a mental health condition like anxiety doesn’t make you less than anyone else.
The experience of living with a mental health diagnosis can make you more compassionate and understanding of other people. Confidence is about knowing yourself and understanding what your strengths are, as well as how to use them.
Sometimes, anxiety comes with a lack of sureness in yourself or if you’re doing the “right” thing, but it is more than possible to work through that and maintain a sense of confidence.
One thing that a lot of people with anxiety have is outstanding emotional insight. They’re often very self-aware and highly sensitive, both of which are assets.
Being aware of your surroundings and understanding your behaviors can help you to be a more empathetic person. Many people with anxiety are conscious of other people’s needs and how they might affect other people as well as how other people affect them.
Empathy and emotional insight are valuable traits that other people are sure to be drawn to, so if you have them, see that in yourself and remember that these things are extraordinary.
What do you like about yourself?
Most people have struggled with confidence at some point in time, regardless of if they have anxiety or not.
A common practice in finding inner confidence is thinking about and being consciously aware of the things that you like about yourself. Some people can think of things right off the bat, and others take a while to do so, particularly if they’re often down on themselves and aren’t used to thinking about their positive traits.
Everyone has something special that they can appreciate about themselves. It could be that you’re kind, perceptive, or that you have a specific skill, like being good at art, math, or athletics. Making a list of these traits and remembering that you’re inherently worthy can be tremendously helpful during times when you’re not so sure of yourself and your confidence.
You are not your Anxiety
There are times when you’ll feel the full-force effects of your anxiety disorder, and there are other times when you’ll feel calm. One of the things to remember about anxiety is that it ebbs and flows.
You can find confidence in the fact that you aren’t your condition and that it’s not your fault that you have it. When you release control, guilt, and shame, you’re able to have more confidence and grounding in who you are.
It’s not always easy to let go of control, but knowing that there will be ups and downs in life and that it’s okay to feel your feelings can be helpful. You’re only human, and there’s only so much that you can do. Having radical acceptance and compassion for yourself can be incredibly useful, and even though learning those things can take some time, it’s worth it to do that.
It’s about self-knowledge and patience for yourself.
Finding self-confidence in therapy
A therapist can help you understand your anxiety better, and guide you in terms of how to manage it if you’re having trouble. It’s okay to ask for support and help when you need it.
Anxiety can be difficult to manage, and that’s why talking to a licensed mental health professional can guide you through the process of understanding anxiety and working through it. You don’t have to do this alone. Whether you work with someone online or in your local area, it’s possible to understand anxiety and get to a place where it isn’t in control – you are.
Everyone copes with anxiety differently, and a counselor can assist you in understanding what works for you so that you be confident in yourself and the management of your symptoms.
Marie Miguel has been a writing and research expert for nearly a decade, covering a variety of health- related topics. Currently, she is contributing to the expansion and growth of a free online mental health resource with BetterHelp.com. With an interest and dedication to addressing stigmas associated with mental health, she continues to specifically target subjects related to anxiety and depression.