135. Anxiety All The Way Down


Anxiety comes at me in waves. Sometimes I am perfectly satisfied with this hard wrought life I’ve made for myself, complete with a wife, home and community. The next second I am obsessing about having to meet people and how am I going to find and wear the proper pants for said meeting (and I only have like two pairs of pants). 

One time, I had so much anxiety about my choices in the board game Pandemic Legacy that I ruined that game forever. I still think about all those diseased millions we left uncured in Shanghai.

There’s objective reasons for my current bout with anxiety. I have a new job, a new commute, a new culture to shape and change. Anxiety is attacking me routinely. The self talk is obsessive and the feeling in my chest is pervasive. Some days are better than others, but last week it was off the charts. I daydream of an incompetent personified anxiety.

The best I've been feeling lately is when I volunteer after work. I feel like I’ve contributed, I feel like I’m valuable, I feel like I belong. It’s helping me through this turbulence. I hate preaching, but since I’ve been told to go to the gym to ease my neuroses since I was 12 years old, I’ll preach back: volunteering is my current biggest anxiety reducer.  Your mileage may vary, so find the thing that helps, but don’t expect it to be what other people tell you. It's definitely not wicked gains in a gym for me.

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Comments

  1. Congratulations Eduardo on the new job. I love your imagining the anxiety as a whole character with a significant part to play in your internal conversations. I do the same, along with other significant emotions.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks! It’s a big theme with me, personified psychological processes.

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