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  • Writer's pictureBrittany Lamb

Lost in the Lights

hopeless. whispers. stupid games. run for your life. counting days. leave with my head hung. it’s been a long time coming. *

My anxiety has always had a grip on my decisions. Days felt like never ending storms. Years felt too fast. Nothing was accomplished. I had no goals and no ambitions because I was scared of just about everything.

You should know I have always wanted to have goals and ambitions and purpose. But I always ran. It was too hard. I didn’t know where to begin. I wasn’t good enough. I wouldn’t achieve anything. I felt no one cared. I would never have that “American story” of achievement.

Do you think I’m writing this because I’ve figured everything out? My anxiety is completely gone? No and No. But I have faced it. I have admitted it. I can recognize it and sometimes even talk my way out of it.

I try to live everyday consciously. Oftentimes, we find ourselves on autopilot. Day after day, we make the same decisions and do the same activities as the day before. Our brains actually run better on auto pilot. It’s called “predictive mind” and it’s actually very fascinating. Feel free to look it up if you want to learn more.

The more I am living consciously, the better I can fight my anxiety. If we’re making the same decisions that we made the day before, we are coming from a place in the past. If we are consciously deciding to do something different, that auto pilot is turned off and we are able to make new choices. Let’s look at an example. Every day, you come in to work excited for the day ahead. You immediately start to get lost in emails, people stopping at your desk to chat, and then you start dreading all the work that’s piling up. Your anxiety kicks in because you have a deadline that is getting closer and closer. That’s your brain on autopilot.

What can you do in order to be more conscious? You come into work and decide to close your door and work on the project that has a deadline. You don’t check emails right away, and you don’t have idle chitchat with coworkers. You realize there is a time and a place for emails and chitchat, and you successfully get your project done on time.

that’s a simple example, but you get the point. Switch up your day, switch up what you do on auto pilot. You’ll be more in control of your day and better able to deal with sudden changes.

it has taken me a long time to realize that I can control my anxiety. I am able to do hard things… Including setting big goals and learning that my achievements are up to me. I can do hard things!

While I will always have anxiety, I can control it with my thoughts and my actions. I can turn off autopilot and stop living in the past. I can stop giving the same reaction to similar situations. I can move on without fear taking over.

*This blog is a part of my series on taking snippets from Taylor Swift songs and putting my thoughts on the lyrics. The underlined portions are not my words - they are from Miss Americana and the Heartbreak Prince (on Lover)

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