Anxiety is NOT a Character Flaw

Hey #strongbabes – guess what? It’s almost 2017!

It’s only natural that this time of year would cause many of us to pause and reflect, as we venture forward into the New Year.

This post is for those of us who, despite trying this year, still feel like they aren’t good enough. This post is for those who have trouble seeing all they have accomplished this year, because their mind is clouded with self-doubt. This post is especially for those who struggled with mental illness this year and aren’t sure how to move forward.

I need to tell you something.

Mental illness might be a part of you, but it’s not all of you. And your anxiety, your depression, your eating disorder, your bipolar disorder – it’s a condition – not a character flaw.

There is nothing wrong with YOU as a person. If you could, for a moment, separate yourself from your diagnosis. Because it is simply a label for something you are going through.

I have anxiety. But I am not myself anxiety. I’m not even anxious every day, or all the time. It’s just something that comes over me occasionally, like a wave. And like many of you going through something similar, I help myself as best I can and wait for it to pass.

I’ve heard so many of my friends before say that they feel “defective” because of their mental illness. Like they weren’t born right; like they were a mistake. And I’d be lying to you now if I said I never felt that way, because I have.

“What’s wrong with me?” I’d ask. And then I would gently say to myself “nothing is wrong with you, you are just having a hard time”. It’s a place that took me a long time to get to. But I want to see you guys get there too.

And if you are there, don’t be afraid to give a hand up to someone else in need. The next time you hear someone beating themselves up for their mental illness, remind them that there is nothing wrong with them. Remind them that their mental illness is a condition, not a character flaw.

Remind them that they are perfect, perceived flaws and all, and just as they were always meant to be.

Thanks for being on this journey with me.


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Holistic Nutrition Consultant and Health Writer. I love making healthy, plant-forward recipes and enjoy eating without labels. My focus is on supporting a healthy gut and acknowledging the role that a healthy gut plays in overall physical and mental wellbeing.

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