Hello everyone! I haven't been posting much lately, as I believe I have been able to make my anxiety levels much more manageable. It wasn't easy and I still struggle with it, as I believe I always will to a certain degree. The biggest element that helped me get my anxiety under control was analyzing my fears. As someone who is health anxious, there are many fears I encounter every single day. Of course, for me, and for many of us, we have that ONE big fear. That one that spirals us into more fears and then sometimes into a complete breakdown. The thing is: I never actually sat down and analyzed this fear. Was it rational? Was it even possible? Those were questions I avoided by telling myself that I could be that ONE person that broke all odds, or that I just was a "special case." I think we all do this. So, I just wanted to create this list for us all to use when facing a new fear, or even an old fear.
-Where did this fear originate? From a commercial on TV? From a news story? From a story of a friend? If it is from anything like that, strike it out immediately. There is absolutely no way that you could be linked to this disease or disorder just from hearing about it. That fear must stop there.
-If the fear didn't originate from one of those listed above, where exactly did it originate? Did you have a symptom and Google it? Google is the most unreliable health source. Something you will learn very quickly with health anxiety. See the posts that have been marked above for more information about why Google is a bad idea.
-If you didn't check Google, who/what did you check? Was it a reliable source? Was it a doctor? If your first source was not a doctor and you spiraled into fear and anxiety about what you believed you had, then there is your reason why. Health problems (serious) should be addressed by a person who has studied health and is certified in it: a doctor. And ONLY a doctor.
-If your doctor addressed your fear and said that there is nothing to be afraid of, why are you holding onto this fear? Did you check Google again? Are you hyper-observing your symptoms? If so, start from the beginning of the list.
These spurts of health anxiety stem from ignoring this list and never fully analyzing your fear before letting it take hold. Now, I'm not saying that everyone will be able to avoid that. An anxious mind is not rational. However, you can force yourself to sit down and try analyzing. Even if it's difficult. I hope this list will benefit someone as much as it has me.
Take care everyone.