Keeping Peace amongst the Chaos

Let’s not pretend the world isn’t completely crazy right now. There’s chaos, anxiety, and uncertainty everywhere. I’ve said, “This is so crazy”, a crazy amount of times over the last couple weeks.
I’ve closed my small business down due to the virus, then watched as all my fellow small businesses fell, one by one. I’ve watched the scary numbers climb everyday. I’ve seen the panic buying first hand. I’ve heard the anxiety filled questions from people all around me. I’ve seen and heard all the bad these last two weeks, that’s for sure.
But, I’ve also embraced the good. I’ve searched out the positivities. And, while I’ve had my fair share of anxieties and fears, I’ve also found some peace. Here’s how I’m clinging to the good:

– Going outside everyday
Getting fresh air is so important. Watching the flowers bloom, and the sun shine, brings a sense of normalcy to it all. It’s comforting knowing that the outside hasn’t changed. The Earth is going on as usual. The seasons are changing, and the colors are starting to burst. Go out and breathe it all in.

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– Meditation
I’ve never really participated in meditation, but since this all started, it’s been such a help. I found an app called “Meditopia”. It’s $4.99/mo, and it offers so much. I highly recommend. It includes hundreds of guided meditations, blogs, daily inspirations, stories, challenges, etc. I use it when I have trouble sleeping, when I’m having an anxiety attack, when I feel depressed, and when I just need to take a breather.

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– Staying in contact with loved ones
We can’t just hang out with our friends right now, but it’s important to check in with your people. Text, call, Facetime. Do whatever you need to, to keep the sense of feeling connected.

– Make a daily activity list
This helps to give you a routine. I make a list of things to get done every morning, even if those things are trivial. I try to do at least one chore a day, one activity with my husband, and one creative/artistic activity. It give a sense of purpose and structure.

– Remind yourself that this is all temporary
Yes, it’s a scary time. We don’t know when it’s all going to be over. We don’t know the end results. But, one thing we do know, is that it WILL NOT last forever. Life will return to normal. We will come out on the other side. You will hug your loved ones again. You will return to work. You will be able to do regular social activities again. You WILL get to the other side. Repeat that to yourself as many times as you need.

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LIfe is a little scary right now. And, everything listed above is just what has been helping me. I can’t guarantee it will help you. But, it is possible to find peace amongst the chaos right now. You may just have to reach down as deep as you can.
Please stay home and stay safe during this time. Much love. ♥

I’m Loving Me.

Listen, there is NOTHING wrong with having self love. There’s nothing wrong with having confidence and taking pride in yourself. Don’t let anyone ever tell you otherwise.

I’ve struggled with insecurities. So many of them. I will never lie and say otherwise. Confidence has never been a strength of mine.

I’m a social butterfly that dreads meeting new people and going to new places because of low self-esteem and social anxiety.

I always feared that people would see me the way I see myself in the mirror.

But, I’m putting this mentality behind me now. I’m checking my insecurities at the door.

I am who I am. I struggle with my weight. I have dark circles under my eyes. I don’t like my smile. But, I am so much more than that.

I’m a wife. A friend. A daughter. A sister. A believer. A photographer. A lover of all people. These qualities far outweigh my own insecurities.

I’m loving me. I’m loving me for all I am, and all I have to offer. And, you love you for all you have to offer, too. We’ll get through our insecurities together.

It’s time to start looking in the mirror and seeing past our flaws. It’s time to start seeing everything that makes us unique and beautiful. It’s time to embracing ourselves.

I’m preaching to myself here, too. It’s time to take my own advice.

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Five Quotes from ‘Alice in Wonderland’ that are Actually Great Pieces of Advice

If I’m being completely honest here, I have to tell you that the movie, “Alice in Wonderland” scared me to death as a child! But, now that I’ve re-watched, as an adult, I actually found that there are pretty solid pieces of Advice throughout the film. 

1.

It’s ok to not where you’re going or where you’ll end up at all times. The road you’re taking will eventually get you where you need to be. 

2. 

 Don’t beat yourself for being “different” or “weird”. Everbody has their own quirks. We’re all unique, and that’s a great thing! 

3. 

I personally love this one. It’s a reminder for me to keep going and keeping growing as a person. Always try to be better than the person you were yesterday. 

4. 

Don’t judge others. We all have our problems. We’re all human and we all make mistakes. 

5. 

This quote reminds me to use my imagination and get inspired. Growing up doesn’t mean we need to lose our imagination. That’s what makes art. 


 There are so many more great quotable moments in “Alice in Wonderland”, but these are just a few of my personal favorites. I think we can all learn a little something from each character in the movie. It’s alright to be different; you just have to love yourself. ♡ 
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Anxiety: A Life or Death Disorder

I never wanted to leave the house. 

I couldn’t control the racing thoughts going through my brain.

I slept constantly, because it brought peace.

I distanced myself from friends and family. 

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Anxiety isn’t just panic attacks. 

Anxiety is depression. It’s racing thoughts. It’s feeling cut off from the world. It’s always second guessing yourself. It’s feeling like you’re having a heart attack in the middle of the night, out of nowhere. 

There are so many different components to Anxiety Disorder. It doesn’t effect any two people the same. 

You can’t always see anxiety on the outside. It’s an inward battle that takes over a person’s life. It takes ahold of your brain, and doesn’t let go. 

 

Definition of Anxiety Disorder: A group of mental disorders characterized by significant feelings of anxiety or fear. 

That’s a pretty broad definition. It says nothing about what causes it, where it comes from, or why it’s even a thing.

Why? Because, it’s different for everyone. It can be caused because of a person’s environment, an event that caused P.T.S.D., or even a chemical imbalance in the brain. It can manifest in a huge variety of different ways. 

Some people develop O.C.D. 

Some people have irrational fears. (i.e.: the dark, being sick, certain animals, or even leaving the house)

Some people have anxiety/panic attacks. Those come in a thousand different forms. 

 

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Here comes the important part: 

Most people living with Anxiety Disorder are too afraid or ashamed to talk about it. That means they won’t ask for help. People living with Anxiety are at an increased risk for suicide, because they never got the help they needed. Insurance doesn’t always cover mental disorder care. It can be lonely and terrifying. 

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If someone you care about tells you they’re suffering from Anxiety or Depression, PLEASE do not dismiss them. 

Sometimes it’s a matter of life and death. 

 

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The Ugly Parts of Anxiety… 

I’m not going to lie to you, it’s an ugly night. I’m fighting, but anxiety is currently winning this round. I hate go say that, because I try to keep this blog inspirational and upbeat. I almost decided not to write this. But, this is living with Anxiety. This is what it’s like to be me. I said I was going to be open about my disorder, so here it is: 

Tonight is one of those nights that I literally feel like my anxiety is ripping me apart. I can barely think. My mind is spinning. I feel dizzy, sad, scared, hot, and wired. 

Honestly, I feel so many emotions, I couldn’t even pick one that stands out the most. 

My sister, who also suffers from anxiety, is here. I’m trying to hide my panic attack so she doesn’t see. I don’t want to upset her. She’s having a good night. Trust me when I say that hiding a panic attack is so much harder then it sounds. 

I wanted to write this while in the middle of my panic attack, so I can really explain, in detail, what it feels like. But, I can’t think clearly enough to put it into words. I don’t even know what to say. 

At this point, I think I’m just writing to try and get my mind off of it. 

I am exhausted. My body hurts. I feel like I can’t get my breathing under control. My heart is pounding. If you’re wondering, nothing in particular brought it on. I was just laying on my couch. I was fine. And then, I wasn’t. 

I know I’m not alone in this. Chances are that someone reading this is feeling the same way. Just know I feel you. I understand completely. You are far from alone. And, even further from being crazy. 

I’m going to keep telling myself that I am strong. This is a temporary feeling that will soon pass. 

Here’s to a better tomorrow. 

Here’s to being calm and happy. ♡


Photo by: Kari pillow photography. Check her out on FB. 
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Five Daily Thoughts of an Anxious Girl

If you’re new here, I struggle with AnxietyDisorder. I’m a hot mess 97% Of the time. If you’re an Anxious person, you should be able to relate to these five thoughts I have on a daily basis: 

I’m going to mess something up today. 

This thought isn’t specific to any certain thing. But, I always have the thought in the back of my head. I’m constantly worried I’m going to mess something up, embarrass myself, or make someone mad. I can’t help it. It’s just the way my brain is wired. It’s not that I’m a negative person. I’m quite the opposite, actually. Anxiety tends to cause insecurities. 

What if I’m a burden? 

I’m constantly annoying myself with my anxiety. I even want to get away from me, so I can’t imagine how others feel. Every time I have a panic attack, or a bad day, I feel like I’m just being annoying, or putting un-necessary stress on my loved ones. 

Why am I so weird?! 

Seriously. Why can’t I just be a normal person for FIVE MINUTES?

I am too overwhelmed. 

This is probably my most frequent thought. The smallest things overwhelm me: two different noises at one time, crowds, driving in a new area, going grocery shopping…. not kidding. EVEN SHOPPING. There are multiple times a day when I have to step back and take a “breather” and regroup. It’s not as fun as it sounds. 

Tomorrow will be a better day. 

No matter how bad a day I’m having, I always have hope for tomorrow. People living with AnxietyDisorder get a bad rep. We get labeled as pessimistic or negative. That’s not the case at all. I’m a very optimistic person, in general. I see the good in everyone, I hope for the best, and I aim high. Each night I tell myelf, “Tomorrow is a new day, and I’m going to crush it.” Sometimes, I don’t. But, that o.k., because a lot of times, I do. 

Life is a roller coaster when you’re living with Anxiety. You just have to learn to enjoy being on top. You have to take in the view and remember it. Just know that, even though the ride goes down, it always comes back up. 
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Photography and my Anxiety Disorder 

I have a lot of things that help me with my anxiety: a wonderful husband, a supportive family, great friends, home remedies, and of course, the right medication. But, I want to tell you about how my passion for photography has helped me cope with my disorder. 

I was diagnosed with Anxiety Disorder as a teenager. About a year after the diagnosis is when I picked up photography. (Here’s a shout out to my photographer mom that introduced me to it.) I’ve been doing it about nine years now. To say it’s my passion would be an understatement. It is a huge part of my life. My camera goes everywhere I go. 

Here’s why: whenever I feel an anxiety attack coming on, I can pick up my camera, and escape both reality, and the thoughts inside my head. It allows me to have a break from the panic. 

On top of that, it allows me to create art whenever I want. 

Photography is now my full time job. It is my way of contributing to my husband’s salary, and I can’t express how thankful I am to be able to do what I love for a living. 

But, it’s not just an income for me. It’s a way of life. I don’t just do it because I get paid to do it. My “passion projects” as I call them, are my favorite things to do. I don’t get paid to do them, but I do get to create art, and work through my anxiety. It’s therapy for me. Whether there’s money in it, or not, I will always have my camera ready. 

“Photography is therapy for the eyes, mind, and soul.”

When you suffer from Anxiety disorder, (Or ANY mental disorder, for that matter), and you can find something that helps, you do it. You do it as much as you can. 

Art heals. That, I know to be true. It’s one of the most therapeutic things on Earth. I can’t imagine life without it. In fact, it’s amazing just how many people have been effected by art. 

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