What’s up with these foxes in the winter?
My room is at the back of the flat and oversees the yard. I live in the city where it is never truly dark. Although, when the foxes start howling as the clock strikes midnight, it sounds like there’s nothing left on this planet except for the fox and I. The howling is unlike anything you would expect. It is the sound that only a tormented soul would make. It is a sound that will shake your being as a whole and then echo in the hollows of your empty soul.
Well, it’s not exactly that deep. But the howling actually sounds like someone desperately screaming at the top of their lungs. It will not fail to haunt me even though I know it’s just some hungry foxes passing by our yard. But enough about that.
Anxiety is a peculiar thing. It comes in many different forms. It will silently creep in through the cracks of your mind and slowly spread out, engulfing it completely with negative thoughts to extinguish any spark of happiness, self-compassion and self-confidence. In short, it’s that one secretly jealous ‘friend’ who pretends to point out and exaggerate your little flaws to ‘help’ you become better, when everyone else knows the real incentive is to make you feel like sh*t so they can feel better about themselves.
That’s where I find anxiety peculiar. It’s somewhere from within us. What do we have to gain by being unkind to ourselves? Also, why do we listen to it when we know it is upto no good? At the same time, we can’t help it. Especially those of us that lean towards perfectionism.
The thing about anxiety is that once it gets in my head, it’s the only thing that remains there. The more I think about the thing (which is most of the time pointless beyond words) that is causing the anxiety, the more this feeling of anxiety amplifies (naturally). I know I should stop thinking about this thing irrationally, but it always takes a few days to identify the gravity of this thing and think through it, accept it and move on. Unfortunately, sooner or later, something else triggers my anxiety and the cycle begins again.
Anxiety is something that affects not only how we feel but also how we interact with our surroundings. Days when I feel extra anxious, I have a very hard time trying to cover it up. No work gets done and I can even feel the negative energy I am giving off when I am interacting with someone else which makes my anxiety worse! It’s always a good idea to take a step back and evaluate what’s going on inside the head.
What I find helpful is three things: salah, thinking through from a different but realistically positive perspective and most recently (just yesterday): writing down (or thinking) about all the good things that happened in a day. I began this post to write down all the good things that happened in the day where my own skin felt strange and heavy.
Although I didn’t end up writing these good things down, thinking about them made me feel better. It gave me an altered perspective and made waking up in the morning that much easier. Truth be told, I had quite an okay day today minus the hours spent working.
So here are the few good things that happened today:
- Waking up alive.
- Waking up to a lovely sunny winter morning.
- Cheese croissants.
- Friendlyish customers.
- Home and lunch.
- Reading a bit of the shadow of the wind.
- Sugary foods: vienna whirls and half of a lemon cake slice.
- Knowing that I don’t have to go to work or college tomorrow.