Having experienced the effects of anxiety, depression and burn out I have a lot of empathy for people who struggle to maintain their day to day lives while living with these confusing, unpredictable conditions.
And because the Universe puts us in touch with people who have similar energies to our own, my friends and clients tend to demonstrate an all too familiar resistance to acknowledging their anxiety, depression or burn out and would rather keep working hard and pushing through in an effort to ignore it, in the hopes it may just go away.
I totally get it, as I still have days when I want to distance myself from “it”.
It’s irrational, counterproductive and unhelpful - but if I dwell on the fact I have anxiety and depression it makes me feel less than. Less of a success. Less strong. Less capable. Less balanced. Less, less, less.
In fact, these are the types of questions I asked myself before I decided to write about my experiences with anxiety, depression and burn out. The thought of ‘putting it out there’ felt risky, dangerous and made me feel vulnerable and tense. I tried to put myself in your shoes, as the reader, and work out whether my fears were real.
Even after years of introspection, therapy, journaling, meditation, research and spiritual work I don’t completely understand the full impact of anxiety, depression and burn out on my life. It still likes to surprise me and keep me guessing.
Are labels good or bad? I don’t know. In some ways it is fantastic to have an explanation for feeling a particular way and being able to get help - but in other ways labels can be limiting and constrictive.
Anxiety and depression are tricky as there are no shared universal experiences of the symptoms, and both can be insidious and manipulative. Burn out could be characterised as exhaustion, low iron, lack of sleep, being too busy – and go undiagnosed.
At the end of the day, my current conclusion is that anxiety, depression and my tendency towards burn out are just aspects of me - just like my green eyes, capacity to love, size 7 feet, love of nature and my deep desire for meaningful conversations.
Neither good nor bad, with gifts and challenges on either side of the coin - it is what it is. I will keep on focusing on the positive aspects and doing my imperfect, perfectly perfect best to live my most fulfilling life.
Amanda is a (reformed) lawyer turned holistic life coach, self-care advocate, workshop facilitator, writer, speaker, avid reader, nature lover, chai tea drinker and mother to a curious, active toddler. A spirit seeker who loves connecting with others on journeys of self-discovery, Amanda believes we can all find our own version of success and live an empowered life.