The only way to beat anxiety disorders is to get to know yourself, properly. Admitting you have a problem is different to owning that problem and understanding the conflict between your brain and body.
In my own personal experiences as a coach, changing the perception or story of the situation which creates the anxiety can be very effective. So often we forget where the anxiety came from in the first place.
Technology has changed the world around us, so is it any wonder that our mental issues have reached the next version number too? If you have OCD and happen to be a geek, it will almost certainly poke its nose into your favourite hobbies and interests.
Is that why they call it Memory Lane do you think? Because we make the past so narrow by filtering for it what suits us to remember? My drinking days were not all bad. Even in my worst of times. It's wrong of me to pretend otherwise.
A little piece of me has evaporated. Two little pieces in fact. I have a new home which is occupied by two of us rather than four; there is a full fridge and no pile of shoes and coats in the hallway. I am in silent mourning for something that is missing yet still not far away.
It's a scary road. You wonder will you ever see the light again but I eventually found the ones right for me, they still make me feel a bit more 'slow' than usual but it's a better side effect than not being able to get out of the bed right?
It started years back with small things. In meetings I noticed I would feel panicky if I wasn't sat by the door- I felt trapped in the room, as if everyone's eyes were on me. I much preferred to be at my desk, head down, getting on with my work.
There is however a large number of people whose symptoms of anxiety and depression are caused by a myriad of other factors and for whom CBT is not necessarily the panacea it is sometimes promised to be.
Fortunately, ridding ourselves, and our societies, from preconceptions about self-injury should not be difficult. Destroying the ridiculous, harmful stigma that surrounds it should, in theory, be straightforward. We just need familiarity. We need to start talking about it.
Wisdom can be characterised as the ability to make smart decisions based on knowledge and experience. It includes taking into account long-term considerations and consequences, as well as postponing immediate satisfaction.
When there is such an emphasis on achieving, regular assessments, bigger class sizes at school with lessons led by overworked teachers dealing with classes of children with increased varying educational needs and staff without adequate support or training, these statistics support my experience of children that are stressed and unable to articulate their feelings.
I'm not saying that depression isn't problematic and that people should suck it up. Far from it. Depressions, and all mental illnesses, need to be talked about and addressed more openly. But using fear-based language isn't a helpful way to get that dialogue going.
We need a new policy from government level down if we are to catch these vulnerable children before they fall. As shocking as these figures are, we haven't got time to re-educate parents into being more honest with themselves.
For anyone that's encountered one, anxiety attacks are terrifying. You genuinely believe you'll never be able to breathe again, that your mind has convinced your body that your time has come, that it's just not capable of continuing.
People think that if you are a psychiatrist it means you push medications on people. Nothing could be further from the truth. Sure some bad apples do. And yes we do prescribe but most of us don't unless we really need to.
A similar act probably carried out every few seconds by teems of mothers all over the world. In that moment I wanted to be her. Because I knew that she is free from the awful, tormenting thoughts that come with post natal OCD.