I know what you might be thinking: “here comes another blogger/influencer with anxiety.” While there seems to be an epidemic of millennials who suffer from mental health issues such as anxiety and depression, I think we shouldn’t judge any of them, whether they’ve been diagnosed or not. We should try to have an open mind and listen to them, with the intention of trying to understand and help them. My personal journey is another story, but to keep it short I was diagnosed and have been battling Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis since January 2014. (I’ll be writing a post about my journey very soon, don’t worry)
After a series of traumatic events that happened to me in late 2013, I decided to visit a physician, so I could understand what was going on with me. After describing my symptoms and issues and a series of lab tests and exams I was diagnosed with Hashimoto’s. A couple of months passed, and my condition became worse. That’s when I started acting and thinking differently. I started to experience brain fog, mood changes, irritability, over reaction, you name it. So, I went to the doctor again, and was diagnosed with severe depression and anxiety. Now I know part of my mental issues come from suffering an autoimmune disease that affects my thyroid and the production, reception and use of the essential hormones that my body is not able to acquire. To this day I still haven’t been able to get my disease in remission, but I’ve adopted lifestyle changes that hopefully one day will help me heal. Patience is a virtue and I know it will take time.
In my desire to live a healthier, balanced life I’ve turned my life around and implemented many changes in my routine. I eat a plant-based diet free of gluten, take natural supplements, vitamins and minerals, do fun workouts, meditate, read, listen to music… but sometimes life gets complicated and things get out of control. And without even knowing it my days become gloomy. I get this feeling in my gut, like there’s something wrong, that I’m in trouble or that I’ve upset someone. I start shaking, sweating, crying… I get angry, jumpy and can’t focus anymore. And before I know it I’m on the floor, white as snow, cold, drenched in sweat and with a terrible headache.
This is the worst possible situation you can be in. So, in order to manage my anxiety, I did some research and eventually came across a couple of apps that have tremendously help me control it. As soon as I start feeling a funny knot in my gut I grab my phone and use them. Trust me, they are life-saving. So that’s why I want to share them with you. Whether you personally suffer from anxiety or you know someone who does, let’s take a look at apps I use to help me cope with anxiety.
1. What's Up? - Mental Health App
This is the number one app I turn to. I downloaded it for free on the Google Play Store. According to the developers this app utilizes Cognitive Behavioural Therapy and Acceptance Commitment Therapy methods to help you cope with Depression, Anxiety, Anger, Stress and more. The app has a simple design and it’s very easy to use. Once you’ve installed it, a little introduction page appears and once its over you can see the main page which offers four options: Help Right Now, Coping Strategies, Information and Personal.
The resources in this app are so useful. There’s great information, not too much that overwhelms you, though. It has a great number of tools aimed at different situations ranging from breathing exercises, games to distract you, catastrophe scale, forums, quotes, affirmations, informational pages on various mental health issues, as well as a personal page where you can keep a diary, a habit tracker and notes.
The good thing it’s 100% free to access and use all the resources. The only purchase you can make is a donation, so you can access more themes the app offers which are used to change the background and button colours.
2. Google Keep
Yes, a simple app like Google Keep can be a tremendous asset when dealing with anxiety. In my case I use it as a kind of journal. Sometimes I have a lot going through my head and the best way I can deal with feelings of nervousness and worry is to write down exactly what I’m feeling and thinking and why these things are worrying me. The cool thing about Google Keep is that you can create Labels, which lets you group your notes. In my case, I keep them grouped by topics.
I prefer to journal here instead of a notebook because I usually have my phone with me and since you can sync this app with all your devices, I can just take my phone and go to a quiet place to be alone and write down my thoughts or I can write straight from my laptop if I’m working and get the need to let my feelings out. I urge you to give it a try. Sometimes writing down what’s bothering you can be a great way to understand the situation and clear your head.
3. My Affirmations: Live Positive
Late last year I started paying more attention to the Law of Attraction and how using affirmations can help you achieve the great things in life you desire. Now, whether you’re a fan of The Secret or not, there’s no denying that positive thinking helps us feel at ease. There’s nothing wrong with telling yourself beautiful, reassuring statements every day and this app helps you achieve that. In it you can select which areas you wish to receive affirmations for and schedule notifications. It’s a very simple principle but trust me, it’s a game changer, especially in those times when you feel alone, misunderstood or like a failure. Seeing all those positive affirmations can help you shift your mindset and provide encouragement and support.
4. Stop Breathe & Think: Meditate
This app is great for those who are beginners at meditating, like me. In it you check in with yourself which means you log your status: how you’re feeling physically, mentally and emotionally. Once you complete the profile the app recommends a series of guided activities to help you overcome your situation. There’s also an option for self-guided meditation where you set a timer and meditate on your own. Now I’ve never used this feature since I’m not an expert at meditation. There’s also a tab where you can see your progress and keep a track of your check-ins, emotions and meditation sessions. I only use the basic features in the app since I don’t have a premium membership. But it’s up to you if you want to purchase a subscription and gain access to more meditation tracks and yoga and acupressure videos.
That’s it for this post guys. Let me know in the comments down below if you end up checking the apps I use to help me cope with anxiety. Like and share this post if you felt it was useful to you or someone you know. I would also love to know if you use any apps to help you with anxiety and which, as I’m always looking to try new things. Thanks for reading this post.
Until next time.