Stop letting little things bother you

By Morgan Fazzini
September 24, 2019

Being an anxious person means that I am always on edge. Everything must be planned perfectly throughout the day. I have to follow an internal rigorous schedule. If something changes, my first instinct is to lash out. I feel the world is going to end if one part of my day is altered. Everything will be off if one, small part changes.

Honestly, I don’t even think that people with anxiety are the only ones that can be bothered by little changes through the day. Things like not going to dinner at the same time, changing what to eat in a day, or even changing the scenery for studying can bother all types of people. But sometimes, it’s more than that. Sometimes it’s the actions of a friend or a roommate that can trigger me. If they do something that I wouldn’t choose to do, it can instantly make me anxious. For example, something as little as waiting to clean a dish until after dinner can trigger me, even though it’s not my dish or my choice.

Deep breaths or meditation has helped calm me down. Photo by Max Pixel.

Having too much down time can also cause my anxiety to rise. I like constantly being busy and having at least one thing to do. When I am sitting, starring at my computer, with nothing due, that’s a problem. My mind begins to wander, and as my thoughts grow deeper, I become more anxious. There is no way to determine where the next thought is going to go, I am out of control. I think that down time is the worst part.

I learned to notice this and see my triggers when something is modified as my day goes on. I mean, that’s how days work. Each day is different, I shouldn’t want each day to be the same. They will blend together and I will be on “auto pilot.” Who wants to live a life the exact same way for years at a time? Not me.

It started with the downtime. As I stared at my computer, I would catch myself as my mind wandered. I would bring myself back to where I was and find something to do. Something like writing would help me organize my mind and stay focused on one task. Then, I would reread all of my notes I took in my class. I would do anything I could in my free time to keep from overthinking. Even stopping to take deep breaths helped more than I imagined. I felt the control was back in my hands.

From there, I started calming down my negative reactions about what others were doing around me and telling myself I can’t control them. Who cares what other people are doing? I just had to focus on myself, that was enough to handle already. Once I could stop myself from

Taking naps is also a good way to relax. Photo by Max Pixel.

reacting to others, it was game over. A decent amount of my anxieties started going away because I realized it wasn’t worth the internal battle.

My friends would also calm me down if something would change, especially if it was technically their fault. I think helping myself calm down has a lot to do with who I surround myself with. If I surround myself with anxious people, then we are all going to be on edge all the time. I decided to surround myself with people that don’t care about the little things as much. Little things matter, but only in some situations. When it comes to just enjoying each day in a different way, the little modifications shouldn’t matter. Any day can be a good day if you let it.

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Morgan Fazzini

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