You deserve to have negative experiences. You deserve to have many negative experiences. You deserve to be put into as many uncomfortable, anxiety-inducing, intimidating situations as you possibly can fit into a 24 hour day. You shouldn’t hide away from them. You should be put out there into the big scary world and embrace every single heart sinking moment. But at the same time, you shouldn’t. You have anxiety and that would be horrible for your mental state. That will make the blood flush out of your face, your skin turn pale, your body freeze, your breathing stop, and your mood plummet deeper than the darkest oceans. You shouldn’t do that, that’s scary. That’s bad for your anxiety. Or is it?
Well if you never experience these bad situations, how do you ever learn from them?
How do you ever learn that going to the gym for the first time isn’t as intimidating as your mind told you it was, or that talking to that person in the club won’t end in you being laughed and stared at by the entire dance floor and being ridiculed for the rest of the night and losing all the confidence you tried so hard to muster up and becoming scared and afraid and anxious and alone and never finding anybody ever because you’re too afraid to talk to people and you stay alone and sad and depressed for the rest of your entire miserable meaningless lonely life?!
…that won’t happen, and we know it won’t, we can’t help but think that way when we don’t know any different, all logic is thrown out the window when emotions walk through the door.
Changing your negative perceptions and fears of the world will only come through learning, and learning will only come through putting yourself through these experiences so your mind can re-calibrate itself as the fear of the unknown or the feedback from a particularly negative experience is now overwritten by the new experience which you have learned from. If there is nothing to use to overwrite these negative perceptions then your mind will only reinforce them to the point where severe anxiety takes over and your mind becomes a spiral of don’t do’s and maybe next time’s, thus creating a loop of not learning new things because you are too afraid to try.
So maybe you should put yourself into negative experiences more often? After all they help build you into a stronger, more open minded person, which will only have a domino effect into more experiences, more learning, and more developing. Without negative experiences you don’t learn the true meaning or value of things. Negative experiences allow you to grow more than a positive one would as there is such a difference in the amount of learning and feedback you get. Think of it like this:
You are at a swimming pool, there is a box of treasure at the bottom of the pool and the pool is very very deep. Next to the pool there are several diving boards all increasing in height up to a completely ridiculous “fuck that” high diving board that you would never ever even THINK of jumping off, the thought alone makes your spine shiver. Now you reaaaaaaaally want this treasure- no, you NEED this treasure, and you are going to get it one way or another. Now it’s too deep to swim straight down so the obvious thing to do would be to dive off a board and get some momentum right? But which board do you dive off? You could dive off the very first board, only 5m off the ground so it won’t take you very far into the water and you will still struggle a lot to get to the treasure, but it’s a lot less scary right? Or you could jump off the middle board, 15m off the ground, quite eerie but you could hype yourself up for it, and you’d get about a 3rd of the way down, however you still have a while to swim down and it’d be cutting it very close. But what about the “fuck that” board? 50m high. You jump off that thing and you go plunging straight to the bottom, pick up that treasure, and float right on back to the top within seconds, one take. But you don’t wanna jump off that board, that is way too scary, its a long fall, you could slip, you could fall, you could DIE. Right?
The best possible experiences will always come after the worst ones.
When is an ice cold glass of water the most satisfying? When you are dehydrated.
When is a tight warm hug the most heartfelt? When you are somber.
When is your bed the most snug? When you are exhausted.
Who are the kindest people in the world? The ones that have been hurt the most.
Bad experiences help you learn the value of the good ones. You deserve to have negative experiences. Don’t shy away from them. Don’t hide from anxiety, embrace it, learn from it, and conquer it. Learn and develop from the negative situations, don’t dismiss them to the back of your mind, use them as fuel for the fire in your mind. That way you will become the best person you can possibly be.
When your walls are broken down, you have the perfect opportunity to rebuild stronger ones.
But then again, what do I know?