If our lives were like oceans, spreading over
many years and vast distances, swooping and
swaying according to the waves of change in
the atmosphere around us and interacting with
the people we meet as the ocean flows up and
down the shores –
A small drop of anxiety on just one day can have
a ripple effect that reaches to the depths of the
ocean floor and touches the farthest corners of
THE FIRST DROP
When we first feel restricted about leaving the
house, there goes a drop.
When we get into a group and start feeling
anxious, there is a drop.
When we think of a job we’d really love to go
after but are too scared to. There it is.
Jobs never applied for. Dates never taken.
Friends never made.
Not only does anxiety prevent us from saying
something we wanted to say – today. Not only
does it make us uncomfortable around other
people – tonight.
But we experience the aftereffects of our initial
anxious experience. Over years of our lives.
These small, daily drops create ripples across
When we are uncomfortable leaving the house,
we then feel ashamed that we feel that way. We
wonder if there is something wrong with us. And
so the ripple goes.
When we are in a group of people, say at the mall
shopping, we feel nervous.
We feel isolated by the nervousness. We say to
ourselves: No one understands how hard it is. It’s
The ripples are so subtle at first. But at some
point they begin to span out across our horizon.
Moving through the waves of the current to
saturate every distant cell.
But we may not recognize this vast impact
until we are faced with a similar situation.
What happens when we get a job interview?
What happens when we see someone we
would like to meet? What happens when we
are in a meeting or attending a party function?
The memory is there. The experience
somehow feels familiar. We recognize it.
We don’t like this feeling. We don’t like these
The memory has become our current reality.
Our past becomes our future.
Our lives are effected.
WHAT RIPPLES DO YOU FEEL?
What do you tell yourself about your anxiety
Do you beat yourself up?
Do you feel like there is something wrong with
Do you wonder what is going on inside of you –
that you just can’t seem to control?
Is the idea that past experiences are creating
your future helpful?
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Source by Sarah Malik