stained glass coffee house

The Lessons We Take From Obstacles Can Be Fundamental To Later Success

One of my biggest setbacks I have ever experienced in life was anxiety. The peak of my anxiety plagued me through my high school years. Starting in 10th grade, I had sporadic panic attacks that would leave me gasping for breath in the middle of class. Often, my teachers accommodated me by giving me my assignments to take to the nurse’s office and complete. This anxiety impacted my ability to learn during those years, but learning to overcome it taught me several lessons that would help me on my path to success.

One of the ways that my struggle with anxiety has helped me is by teaching me to adapt. At times, my panic attacks made it nearly impossible to finish the school day. By reaching out and talking to the school, I was able to finish class in the nurse’s office. The panic attacks had become so bad in the last semester of both 11th and 12th grade that I attended school at a more localized place. It was a computer-based learning problem, but I still attended that class with other students who were doing computerized learning. The teacher would give us assistance when necessary. By adapting in these situations, I was still able to graduate high school with a 3.6 GPA.

By struggling with anxiety, I also learned how to calm myself and interact with those in the world around me. Through therapy, I was able to identify the cause of my panic attacks. Once I understood the source, I learned a targeted approach for calming myself so that I could fit into the world around me. As I overcame these struggles, I learned how to calm myself and speak with others. I proved my capability after accepting a customer service job as a cashier. I did have a panic attack about a month into my job, when I dealt with a dissatisfied customer who screamed at me. After this incident, I learned how to better interact with customers and could even deal with similar stressful encounters. This carried over into other areas of my life. I can stand up for myself now and I am comfortable making conversation with people I encounter as I run errands.

Finally, through my struggles, I learned to sympathize with others who may struggle with communication. There was a time in my life when I was overly sensitive to the emotions of those around me. I am still sensitive to the emotions of others, however, now I can respond more appropriately. This is especially true in my personal life. At one time, when my fiancee would come home from a tough day at work, I always thought there was something wrong with the house or that he was angry at me. I have since realized that sometimes, people just have bad days. Instead of reacting in a defensive way, I act openly and ask him how he is doing. This relieves a lot of stress for both of us. We communicate more as a result and have become closer.

Overcoming anxiety, which I believed would permanently be a part of me, has opened my eyes to the many opportunities out in the world. I have learned to adapt to the world around me and doing so has helped me address the world as a whole, as well as speak comfortably with everyone around me.


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