Jon's confidence

Guest blog post from Jon.

How to build confidence when you feel like you don´t have any!

We all want to have an inner sense of confidence, and to live life carefree without any doubts. The problem with anxiety sufferers is that at times we can be full of doubts. So how do you turn things around and start to develop a strong sense of self-assurance?

Learn how to deal with yourself, not the situation
First of all you need to take practical steps in learning how to deal with yourself. In facing situations you find difficult. You can´t wait for confidence or you´ll be waiting forever. So take a deep breath and step outside your comfort zome. Willingly put yourself into situations you try to avoid. Speak up! Accept that you will feel nervous but don´t fight it, just go with it. Act in spite of how you feel. This is the key!

There´s no magic bullet in building confidence. You need to prove your doubts wrong. And then to prove them wrong again and again! By facing situations that make you feel anxious over and over again you will develop that voice inside you that says ¨I can do it!¨

Constantly remember past success
To help this voice grow you need to take note of such moments where you faced your difficulties and overcame them. To do this I recommend you keep a journal. At the end of each day write down the difficult moments you faced and how you dealt with yourself successfully. Also review your past successes daily. This will reinforce an attitude of confidence. Also in your quiet moments such as waiting for the bus you can reflect on your past successes. Remember how good it felt to come through the other side despite how you felt and give yourself a big pat on the back.

And then next time when you are going into a moment you usually find difficult take a moment to think of some of your previous successes and bask in your glory. Really appreciate how great you have done! And then you can go forward into the situation with an inner confidence that you are becoming a stronger person.

Make lists
Another thing which will helps reinforce, and build your confidence and self.esteem is writing down positive thngs about yourself. I recommend making lists of your positive attributes, past achievements, compliments people have given you, and things you´re good at. And then reviewing these lists daily. This will get you into the habit of seeing yourself in a positive light, of seeing yourself as a confident person who holds themself in high-esteem.

These things actually happened. So whenever you are feeling down, and need a little pick me up, you can remember your past successes, or something from your list and you will instantly feel better.

It´s a marathon not a sprint
Becoming a confident person takes time and commitment. By keeping a journal and lists and reviewing them daily, little by little you will transform. And before you know it you won´t even have to think about it anymore, you will just be a confident person. You´ll feel great with an deep sense of satisfaction of having grown into the confident person you deserve to be.

This all takes work. But it´s more than worth it. Seeing yourself change into a more confident, self-assured person is a great feeling. The act of taking control and becoming like this through your own effort is deeply satisfying, and gives you more confidence to go into the future with more enthusiasm. So, don´t wait any longer. Start facing difficult situations, focus on the positive, remember your successes, and start being the confident person you really are!


Just say yes

Generally speaking, saying yes provides more opportunity and better experiences because you're doing something you don't usually do.

Of course the typical difficulty that you and I face, is that sometimes saying yes brings overwhelming fear which means we cannot physically do it, or we may face panic attacks and other struggles.

But, you can do it! By saying yes, you will be undertaking exposure which is what many therapists ask you to do to reduce your anxiety. For example, by saying yes to catching a bus, you are exposing yourself to the situation and ultimately reducing your anxiety in the long run. The more you do it, the less your anxiety until you no longer have it. For example, I can now leave the house, catch buses and ask for things with practically no anxiety. But, there once was a time when I couldn't even walk towards the door.

Do you want to go clubbing?, travelling?, do you want to go to a party? All of these things would provide anxiety for me, but you have to leave it behind as it will. By doing these things, you'd probably have a good time despite your haunting thoughts. You have to try and go with your gut feeling and take a change. Perhaps try and set a goal and say you'll say yes for a few days. See how you feel, even if it may cause anxiety beforehand. I guarantee, that the things you've wanted to do, but have been scared to say yes to, will be fine. 

Of course there are priorities, and you may not be in your stage of recovery where you feel comfortable. I have to say this was the biggest thing stopping me. When my anxiety was quite severe I didn't feel anywhere near ready to be doing the things I am doing now. So, it's totally understandable if you can't say yes to everything right now. Don't beat yourself up about it, I can totally sympathise and understand that mindset. My anxiety still stops me from saying yes to things now, but as time is moving on for me, the more things I am able to say yes to, and I only feel this way because of the stage I am at. It does take time to train your brain to battle the doubting thoughts, so try to be patient and keep going!

If you want to read more about this, you can click here for my Life Vs. Death post.

Best Wishes,
Amy xx

Blogging secrets

A few of you have asked me how to start a blog or how to get followers. I have written below some tips that may help:

1. Topic - You need to have a specific topic or theme with your blog. Is it a lifestyle blog? Is it a beauty blog? If you start with a topic or theme, then you focus all of your attention on that specific area, your readers will know what to expect. As your blog grows, you can slowly develop your blog to other areas.

2. Schedule - I find having a schedule not only helps me to write regularly, but for my readers to know when I have written something new. I know there are sites such as bloglovin where you are automatically updated, but remember not everyone will follow you on these sites. 

3. Twitter - Creating a twitter account specifically for your blog is what I've found as the most beneficial. Through twitter I have found so many new bloggers and most of my readers have found me through twitter too. Without twitter I don't think I'd have the audience that I currently have!

4. Ideas - I always have a list where I keep a note of all of my ideas for my blog posts. I often end up writing quite a few of my blog posts in advance, just in case I don't have time to write them on the day.

5. Design - I have found that some people have amazing designs on their blogs, whereas mine is quite simple. If I'm honest, I haven't quite figured out how to customise everything! Having a design where people can easily find your blog posts and follow you on various sites, makes everything so much easier and more memorable. 

If you any questions or anything you'd like me to write about, leave a comment below!

Best Wishes,
Amy xx

Anxiety is strange

I've always thought that from the outside anxiety seems strange, and many people fail to understand. For many, the struggle to catch a bus and someone getting in a panic about it can seem silly, as for some this presents them with no danger. I often find myself as a 19 year old feeling stupid about what my anxiety affects. Supposedly a 19 year old is to have a job, drive a car and do a range of activities and my anxiety severely hinders this. The changes I have to make to control my anxiety, often makes me feel like an 9 year old, rather than an 19 year old. But even though this is the case, we all have different things we have to battle, and even if this cannot be seen on the outside, there may be a huge fight on the inside.

Generally speaking, the complete panic over going into school for example, seems complete disproportionate, and even above comprehension. I was sat thinking about this the other day. How to an anxiety sufferer, certain situations can take over the whole world in a second and yet others walking past are oblivious and would see no logical explanation as to why it was occurring.

Nevertheless, the thought that I had about this did make me think. But, it doesn't take away the greatness of your struggle, because you and I both know that the battle of anxiety is very real. Everyone has demons to battle and it just so happens that yours is one not in line with the rest of your friends, but that doesn't matter. In the end "the race is only with yourself."

Keep going,
Amy Xx

Suicide

For some this post may be triggering, so please don't feel you need to carry on reading. The charity Samaritans are here to help, you can call them on 08457 90 90 90 (UK)

I've decided to take this step into writing this post because I very rarely see anyone talking about this topic directly. It's always covered up or ignored even though the loss of life is very real. Suicide, which I'm sure many of you are aware of, or have thought about is the taking one's own life. I know for many this post will want to be avoided because you don't want to think about it. But, this is exactly the point. Suicide and it's awareness cannot be ignored for any longer.

Here in England, there is a death every two hours.

This death could be your family member, your friend, your partner, parent or teacher. This is what makes the statistic even more shocking and the worst part is that people still ignore it. Suicide is a very real problem and there is the possibility that someone close to you is experiencing suicidal feelings or has tried to kill themselves. You may not even know and that is the scariest part. Occasionally however, a person may show signs of needing help or even directly asking for help. Please make sure you are a listening ear. Try just to listen, and to not make any comments on the matter. There are signs to be looking out for and ways to help, which you can read about, here.

Suicide isn't always directly connected to a mental health issue and there doesn't need to be a reason for it. Either way, it can still be fatal.

By writing this post, I don't just want to raise awareness, but I want to make sure that you understand something. When we feel suicidal, there is no way out, there is no help, there is often the feeling that no one understands and some people even feel that no one would miss them or love them. But, let me tell you this; people will miss you and people do love you. Whatever you are facing, and for however long, whether it's months or years, you can keep going. Often, the endless pain with no happiness for so long, and even the loss of what we once had leads us to feeling that we don't have the strength to carry on and I know that it is what you experiencing. But, let me tell you even when you feel you are taking your last few breaths, you do have the strength to carry on, there is a way out and it will come in time. Life is very unexpected and one day you will find the light again, and you will enjoy the love of life once more. I don't blame you at all for feeling like you do, but trust me when I say it will get better. Even if what I'm writing sounds like a shot in the dark and completely false, I do know that you can get there. 



Best Wishes and keep fighting,
Amy Xx