Is Change an Enemy?

I can only speak for myself, but one of the things I find toughest to deal with while battling anxiety and depression is change. Most days I feel like it’s an achievement if I’ve managed to keep myself and my little ones alive, and a big part of the way I handle that is through dividing my day up and having routines. Working to set times and around big events like mealtimes help the task appear less daunting. But when something upsets my normal schedules it really stresses me out.

I also find it difficult when somebody comes over because I feel like my home isn’t a safe place where I can be myself anymore. It’s isolating because it means as well as rarely going out because of anxiety, I rarely allow others into my home as well. So I live in a sort of bubble, pretty cut off from the world and people around me.

And it’s a tough existence, even though I know it’s the one I choose to live. It’s a vicious circle. My situation feeds my anxiety and my anxiety in turn influences my situation. Is there any way to break out? I know that challenging myself would help me grow, but that’s so difficult when you feel emotionally fragile. I know that embracing change, rather than avoiding it, would greatly strengthen me. But it’s so hard, because it goes against my natural instincts. When change threatens, all I want to do is curl up in a ball and hide until it passes. In truth, I want to hide a lot of the time. But I know in theory that avoidance of anxiety triggers actually increases anxiety. It removes the symptoms in the moment but it increases the fear.

Anyway. So I think I need to challenge myself more. I think I need to try to step outside my comfort zone a little.

At least, I think that’s what I need. I have no idea whether or not I’ll be able to pull it off. Life is so frightening.

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