I’ve had an anxiety disorder for my entire life. I believe my anxiety is partially genetic, but additionally, environmental factors have definitely played a role in my mental health. Surprisingly, most people don’t seem to realize that there is a profound overlap between mental and physical health. I could go into a lot more detail on all of these specific correlations, but for this particular topic, I’m just going to touch on the relationship between anxiety and fatigue. 

Interestingly, fatigue is listed as one of the top three symptoms of an anxiety disorder. For some people, this may be because people with anxiety tend to lose more sleep because of their condition. When insomnia and anxiety link up, the results can be devastating for your sleep schedule. For me personally, I sleep just fine at night, but panic attacks and anxiety attacks completely deplete me of my energy. There is a phenomenon known as the “anxiety attack hangover,” which more or less describes the feeling of being drained or “jet lagged” after having the attack. This is something I’m all too familiar with, and I have some thoughts on why this probably happens to me.

Going into fight-or-flight mode uses a ton of energy. Anxiety itself uses up a lot of energy! Feeling my adrenaline spike, my blood pressure heighten, and my breathing accelerated always leaves me feeling absolutely destroyed after I recover. The production of adrenaline itself uses up a ton of glucose and energy, which is probably why folks with anxiety disorders (including myself) are always so dang tired afterwards. 

However, anxiety itself is not the only thing that can cause me to feel fatigued. As I’ve mentioned a few times before, I have a prescription for Ativan, which belongs to the benzo drug class (Xanax is a more common benzo you may have heard of). Ativan is used as a short-term treatment for people with anxiety and panic disorders, and is also used as a sedative before medical procedures.

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In a nutshell, it’s a pretty strong drug. I don’t take Ativan often, probably only about ten times a year, because it’s designed for short-term use only and can become highly addictive if taken too often. When I do take an Ativan, I’ll usually feel extremely calm and a bit out of it, because the drug causes my heart rate to significantly slow down. The last time I took an Ativan, in preparation for a speech in class, I decided to forgo my usual coffee in fear that an “upper” would interfere with a “downer.” This may have been a mistake, because I became SO exhausted and chilled out after my speech that day, I was essentially incoherent. I went to lie down in my room around 3pm, and didn’t wake up until 6:30pm. I was completely disoriented for the rest of the night, because frankly, that’s just what Ativan does to you. I guess the only silver lining is that I did get through my speech without having a complete breakdown.

So, yeah. Fatigue and anxiety is a lose-lose situation, in my case. If I don’t take medication and subsequently have a panic attack, I get fatigued. If I take my medication and avoid an attack, I still get fatigued. As I previously said, I very rarely take Ativan, so most cases end with me having a full-fledged panic and consequently feeling tired for the rest of the day. I really can’t win with my anxiety.

Now that I’ve gotten the depressing things out of the way, let’s talk about what you (and I) can do if you get hit with those post-anxiety sleepies. One thing that makes me feel better is to take a little nap, or even just lay down and do nothing for an hour or two. This is the time your body NEEDS to recharge and re-center, so there’s no reason to have guilt. If you have the resources, practice some form of self-care to get you through the rest of your day. Practice some deep breathing, meditation, or treat yourself to a bubble bath. Put on a video or a funny movie that makes you laugh. 

Having an anxiety disorder is not your fault, and it shouldn’t be treated as such. If you’re comfortable with it, make sure your professors and family members are in the loop about how anxiety can affect your mental health. In my personal experience, most people are more than happy to listen and help you in any way they can. I promise you don’t have to go through anxiety alone!

Further reading: https://www.getthegloss.com/article/how-to-deal-with-the-anxiety-attack-hangover

Image: VectorStock


THE BASICS:

Chakra: Throat, Third Eye

Birthstone: None

Zodiac: Sagittarius

Planet: Moon

Element: Water, Air

Typical Colors: Rich royal blue, green, yellow, violet, with white veins or patches


When I was first getting into crystals and stones about a year ago, sodalite was one of the first crystals to catch my eye. I have a couple pieces of sodalite- one tumbled, and one raw, but they’re both equally beautiful and interesting to look at. To me, sodalite resembles a planet being born, covered in royal blue water with veins of white ice running through it. In that case, I suppose it makes sense that sodalite is utilized to strengthen spirituality in the Third Eye chakra, and how we think creatively and intuitively. 

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Sodalite in the tumbled form

I read a quote in a book about a metaphorical “veil” we have between ourselves and the rest of the world, and to me, that’s a great way to explain the concept of the Third Eye to someone. I’ve mentioned the quote many times before on my blog, but I’ll add it in here just in case you haven’t heard it:


“Mom says each of us has a veil between ourselves and the rest of the world, like a bride wears on her wedding day, except this kind of veil is invisible. We walk around happily with these invisible veils hanging down over our faces. The world is kind of blurry, and we like it that way. But sometimes our veils are pushed away for a few moments, like there’s a wind blowing it from our faces. And when the veil lifts, we can see the world as it really is, just for those few seconds before it settles down again. We see all the beauty, and cruelty, and sadness, and love. But mostly we are happy not to. Some people learn to lift the veil themselves. Then they don’t have to depend on the wind anymore.”


When we open our Third Eye -or lift the veil- we are able to see the world for what it really is, and pay adequate attention to the hefty concepts in life. If you’re like me, and you struggle to remember what really matters in life sometimes, you might benefit from adding sodalite to your crystal collection. Emotionally, sodalite brings order and calmness to the mind. Meditating with sodalite encourages rational thought, objectivity, truth, and intuition, and self-esteem. It can also aid with calming panic attacks, if that is something you struggle with. When my PMDD is at its height, I find that I am more prone to panic/anxiety attacks, so sodalite is a must-have.

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Raw sodalite chunks

Some people also believe that sodalite can aid in physical ailments, like boosting the immune system and overcoming calcium deficiencies. Because sodalite correlates with the throat chakra as well, it can also be used to treat the throat, larynx, and voice hoarseness. Additionally, some people have claimed that sodalite can aid with insomnia!

I love sodalite, because it’s a total “Renaissance man” of crystals. And by that, I mean it’s wonderfully useful for a variety of different things. Whether you need help with your sleep schedule, your self confidence, or your connection to the spiritual world, sodalite could definitely be the stone for you.

Sodalite can be very easy to purchase, both online and in your typical crystal store. I get most of my crystals from Village Silversmith, which is a shop based in the New England area. If you’re interested in purchasing sodalite online, Etsy is a great place to start! Like many other crystals, it’s very inexpensive and can be purchased in bulk.

I hope you’ve enjoyed this crystal diary today. I’m hoping to get to Village Silversmith soon, so I can stock up on some new crystals to show you! I just recently bought a gorgeous cluster of spirit quartz, so maybe that will be the next crystal I write about!

Further reading: https://www.charmsoflight.com/sodalite-healing-properties

https://www.energymuse.com/sodalite-meaning

Pictures: http://www.gemsbymail.com/Tumble-Mix-Rough-Sodalite-1-LB-p383.html

SODALITE Mental Clarity Stone, Study Buddy, Meditation Crystal