I feel it building. My pulse begins to race, a hot flush creeps up my neck and flows out across my cheeks. I begin to feel a tightness and piercing pain in my chest. I’m having a panic attack.
This was my experience, nearly two years ago, when daily panic attacks lead to agoraphobia after my third miscarriage. I was depressed, anxious, and felt that nothing in my life was going right for me; I couldn’t see the forest for the trees.
A regimen of talk and medication therapy has brought me to an unbelievably wonderful place in life, one where I cherish the small moments (in addition to the “big” ones), possess a confidence my teenaged self would be insanely jealous of, and am filled with a calm that allows me to handle life’s difficult moments with grace. How did I get here, you ask? Gratitude, my friends, gratitude.
At some point, amid the chaos of anxiety and depression, I realized I was taking the things I did have, the important “things”, in my life for granted. Slowly, I began to turn my thinking around, focusing on being grateful for my life, instead of grieving the things [babies] I’d lost.
As someone who is active in public forums, kindness, patience and being understanding of others are the tenets that inspire how I live. When I witness negativity, or am the target of such negativity, I approach the situation with compassion for others — who knows what’s going on in that person’s life? Writing in public forums, I wonder about people’s back stories when they lash out at myself or others online — what happened to make them so angry/mean/righteous? While the nature of my work is public, and therefore open to a wide array of opinions, I no longer let mean-spirited comments, comments meant to make me feel terrible about myself, affect me. Instead, I take a moment to find gratitude for the inner peace I’ve worked so hard to achieve.
Gratitude, empathy, compassion — these traits allow me to live my “best” life and inspire me to to better. How do you live your best life? The Abbott LIFE. TO THE FULLEST. mission is to help people around the world discover what makes them feel fulfilled. Take the Abbott LIFE. TO THE FULLEST. quiz to gain greater insight into what makes you tick.
I took the quiz twice because both family and [career] success make me tick and inspire me to live my best life. When it comes to rating how fully I feel I’m living my life, I gave myself an 80 (on a scale of 1-100). There’s always room for improvement, and there are definitely things I can do to improve my health to, in turn, contribute to my overall well-being.
My #fullosophy is that total body health (mind + body + spirit) is the key to living my best life. Being grateful for the blessings, compassionate towards others and their struggles (and helping when I’m able), and working to achieve my healthiest mental and physical shape. I work each day to embrace myself [exactly as I am] and to immerse myself in things I thoroughly enjoy, igniting my passions — do you, do what you love!
I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.