That’s Not How Anxiety Works

Calm down.

Chill out.

Just take a deep breath.

Stop stressing about it.

Just don’t let it get to you.

You’re being ridiculous.

All things that I’ve been told when anxiety has me freaking out. All things that I’ve told myself. It’s just not that easy. That’s not how anxiety works.

I wish it was! I wish I could just stop being nervous- stop the heart pounding, white knuckle gripping fear that overcomes me sometimes.

I have anxiety.

Ever since becoming a mother, I’ve suffered with this affliction. Panic-stricken, sweat inducing, paralyzing worry.

I’ve been doing really good keeping my anxiety under control. Now that my son is 5, my  body has started to feel more like mine. My mind as well. I was starting to feel pretty ‘normal’ again. But, it never completely goes away.

There have been some events over the last few months that have really messed with me. I haven’t been sleeping well. Decisions, stresses, all kinds of things have snowballed and over the last couple of weeks, my anxiety has been back full force.

Thinking about it now, sometimes it’s the strangest things that trigger my anxiety- riding in the car on the interstate for example. It nearly cripples me with fear. Or when I’m faced with too many decisions in a situation, instead of handling it rationally, I tend to shut down.

I share this not so that you feel sorry for me. Not that you think I’m crazy. But, so that if you too suffer from this affliction- you know you’re not alone. There’s someone here who understands. A woman that usually hides behind a brave face, but is sometimes suffering in silence. It’s easier for me to compartmentalize that part of myself- to hide her away. However, this is a new year and I promised I would be more transparent. More real. More me.

So, if you’re suffering and need help- reach out to someone. Ask them to pray with you. Ask them to talk with you. Ask them to lend you a hand. I’m thankful for a Husband, that may not understand anxiety, but is there when I need him. That takes over when I need to tap out. That doesn’t yell or make fun of me when I’m stressed. He promised to love me for better and for worse- and he does.

And I’m no expert, but if you are having a really hard time- get some help from your doctor. There’s no shame in needing help. Anxiety can make you feel so isolated and alone, but it doesn’t have to.

Please remember you’re not alone and there are so many others like you.




  1. This Messy Season

    January 4, 2018 at 9:17 am

    Oh man, you are speaking my language right now. If people only knew how!

  2. Mary Leigh

    January 4, 2018 at 5:40 pm

    What a great post! It is really important to talk about these things. Talking openly allows us to get rid of stigmas and empowers others to also talk about them! Thank you so much for sharing!

    1. mrsbishop

      January 4, 2018 at 9:23 pm

      Thank you- I always want to be transparent with my struggle in hopes that it will help someone else.

  3. Maggie

    January 4, 2018 at 6:50 pm

    Thank you for speaking out about this! I think a lot of people still feel a stigma about mental health, but it’s better to keep it in the open.

  4. Jaclyn Musselman

    January 4, 2018 at 9:05 pm

    I’ve dealt with anxiety throughout my life so all of this resounds with me! Thanks for sharing your story.

  5. Justine @ Little Dove

    January 4, 2018 at 9:24 pm

    I think that this is so important that you shared this, because people that don’t have anxiety just have no way of knowing what it’s like. We have a hard time understanding why someone with anxiety can’t just “calm down”.

    1. mrsbishop

      January 4, 2018 at 9:54 pm

      I used to totally be one of those people who didn’t understand- until it happened to me, so I’m happy to share.

  6. Nicole Banuelos

    January 5, 2018 at 1:25 pm

    This is so resonating with me as I’ve been dealing with anxiety for the last several months. I’ve heard all of those things from various people and its true, thats not how anxiety works. Glad to hear you are feeling more like yourself these days and I hope I can say the same soon too!

    1. mrsbishop

      January 5, 2018 at 1:44 pm

      Hugs- it’s so hard. The most important thing is to recognize it, and not to feel guilty about it.

  7. Livi

    January 5, 2018 at 6:13 pm

    I have anxiety and I understand how difficult it is. It’s interesting how I haven’t reached out to another for prayer. Thank you for that reminder that it would help

  8. eryka

    January 8, 2018 at 11:30 am

    Anxiety is a hard thing to deal with. I noticed taking out gluten from my diet has helped reduce my anxiety

    1. mrsbishop

      January 8, 2018 at 10:29 pm

      That’s a good tip. I’ve been eating a lot less gluten so I hope it helps!

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