Struggling In Silence No More...
I struggled in silence with anxiety, depression and OCD for several years.
What you will find below is a series of Facebook posts I shared in early 2021 where I started to open up about what I was going through.
The act of sharing was one step on a journey of exploration that ultimately led me to go from struggling with anxiety and depression to an experience of life that was fun, exciting and invigorating.
I've included the links to the original posts so you can see the beautiful support I received when sharing.
Remember, things can get better and you are not alone.
17th January 2021
I took this picture in December 2020.
I didn't know why at the time, I simply felt drawn to capture the moment of deep sadness.
I know why now. It represents a part of my life that I've kept hidden from the world for a long time.
If you've followed me for the past few years you will have seen me travelling around the UK and abroad seemingly living the most amazing life while building my online business. Snowboarding in France. House sitting luxury houses. Travelling to Spain, France & Jersey. Building my online business. Stunning beaches. And much more.
From the outside, it probably looked like I was living a dream life. And yes, there certainly were some very memorable moments.
What I didn't share was that for the past 5 or 6 years I have been really struggling with anxiety, panic attacks, OCD and depression.
Anxiety sucked the life out of me and my experience of life.
I'd waste countless hours every day worrying or planning trying to avoid things going wrong.
Life simply felt like more and more of a struggle to get through.
I'd miss the joy of a moment worrying about what was happening in the next.
I would wake up with a racing heart, overwhelm and have panic attacks about dying.
I'd spend 15 minutes checking a single appliance was turned off.
That's just a selection of things that came to me as I write this.
All the photos I carefully selected and shared publicly showed my highlights, this photo I'm sharing today shows what my inner world looked like most days. It was one of sadness, tension, worry, doubt, insecurity, fear, anxiety and struggle.
For a long time it seemed like life wasn't going to get better. I almost accepted that I would always be this worried little boy who never quite felt ready to play the game of life fully.
During 2020 however, of all years, things actually started to improve. I started working for a transformation coach, John El-Mokadem, who had a very different approach to things like Anxiety.
The more time I spent working for John the more I was indirectly exposed to his approach with clients. During 2020 I started to make real progress and see lasting changes (not like with all the strategies, tactics and techniques I'd previously tried).
I am still very much in the early stages of my journey of taking back my life and becoming the man I've always felt was inside of me.
With each day though I explore and understand things a bit better.
With support from friends and family things are getting better.
With each small act of courage, self love and following my intuition things are getting better.
I have wanted to share this post for a while now, but… well you can probably guess #overthinkingit
I really feel drawn to share more about my journey relating to anxiety - in part to further my own understanding but also to help others who are struggling with anxiety.
So that's what I'm going to do.
I am going to start a blog and will share via social media too.
I'm not sure where this journey of sharing will go, and as a testament to my progress, I'm totally OK with not knowing and in fact excited about the possibilities that lie ahead.
Thank you so much for reading this, I really appreciate you.
Note - I did start the blog but quickly realised it wasn't quite time for me to share, over the following few years the energy to share hasn't gone away but I knew I needed to wait until it felt right for me to step up and share... that time has now come :)
The other posts - after the initial share above I posted further updates of thanks, further thoughts and updates from the weeks after the above post. I've included links to each of them below as I have found them helpful to re-read and have a feeling anyone struggling like I was might too.
Click Here To View The Second Post (21st January 2021) - this post was one of thanks and highlighted two key things which people commented on time and time again.
Click Here To View The Third Post (24th January 2021) - in this post I shared some reflections 7 days after the original one, I share how the act of sharing felt empowering, freeing and a big moment in my journey.
Click Here To View The Fourth Post (28th January 2021) - in this post I shared some of the struggles I had with anxiety, how it affected me, a key idea that was pivotal for and how my life had already started to change.
I really do hope the above posts help you in some way. Life and being a human comes with its challenges. I don't see that we can get really get away from that.
What I do know though, is we don't have to go through those challenges alone.
I shared publicly, you don't have to. Choose who and how you want to share. There is no right or wrong way, it's totally up to you.
Just know this, you are not alone.
Shared with love and hope,
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