Hi, Hey, Sup!
Welcome back to my blog. This entry is going to be mostly about the psychological effects of acne and how I learned to deal with it.
It's no secret acne can be embarrassing, no matter how old you get most people feel self conscious about how they look and acne can exacerbate these feelings. When you have acne its very easy to want to hide it from the world because it both looks and feels bad. Every time you walk past someone you wonder what they think when they see you and that massive zit on your forehead seems to throb a hello at every attractive person you walk by. The whole time you want to be somewhere else where no one can see you or be near a mirror so you can check to see if its as obvious as it feels or its still covered by the fifty pounds of makeup you put on it. (We've all been there). What isn't as widely talked about however, is the psychological scars - yes there is more than just acne scars left behind- especially when you allow these thoughts to control your actions. You see these psychological problems begin because of the learned habit of avoidance. Like biting your nails or picking your pimples or turning the lights of when you leave a room - avoiding social situations and hiding become habits as well. The longer you let a bad habit occur the harder it is to break. Stopping the nail biting is a simple form of bad habit breaking. The action has become so ingrained you don't even think about it, muscle memory takes over and before you know it you've chowed down on four fingers before stopping yourself. This is also how anxiety can occur. Now I am no psychologist but in my visits to one and my experience with anxiety it is very much like a bad habit. You teach yourself, without even noticing, that there is something to be afraid of by avoiding it, thinking about the negative outcomes and allowing your imaginations to control you. Before you know it every time you try to put yourself in that situation your brains muscle memory will kick in and viola you're now drowning in the waves of anxiety. Like every bad habit you break, you must teach yourself that there is nothing to be afraid of. This is done by doing what your mind habitually tells you not to do. So the next time you have a bad break out and your mind is telling you to not leave the house, to not look at the people around you, to not draw attention you yourself, that you're hideous, that everyone will laugh at you, that nobody wants you around, that you're disgusting, that it'll never get better, understand that they are just thoughts. They do not predict the future, they are not the truths and realities, they're negative manipulators there to give you a hard time and the only way to have a better tomorrow is to make the best out of today. That is, instead of giving in and proving all your negative thoughts that they are right prove them wrong. Your mind says you're ugly smile in the mirror and say I am me and that is a beautiful thing to be. Because it is. The only time you aren't beautiful is when try to be somebody else.
I know its easy to say this. Oh boy do I know. Every day is a battle but with every battle you get stronger, more beautiful and more happy.
If you are struggling with anxiety and depression and don't seem to be able to get out of bed or leave the house or take care of yourself try doing something small and be happy with your progress; it might be slow but it's still forward. For example if you struggle to get out of bed and doing anything productive try changing your clothes, sitting up and trying to touch your toes for 30 seconds, make your bed or open the blinds. If you can't leave the house or struggle to, try checking the letter box or sitting in the back yard, walking around the block. If it helps ask someone to go with you, walk to the local supermarket and buy something you like.It doesn't have to be big but it does have to be something that might be difficult. If it helps set up a scale and label from 1-10 (1 being least difficult and 10 being most) the actions or situation that you do or would like to do in order of difficulty. Start on the actions you labelled at a 3 or 4 and begin doing them every day, just one. When that action becomes easy, move to the next.If you are shy and would like to become more confident try starting off with making eye contact with strangers then move on to smiling, then to saying hello and then next to giving them a compliment or making a comment even if it's about the whether.
Depression and anxiety is a part of life but they shouldn't be the pinnacles of it. Ultimately, when it comes to acne try to remember that it will pass and it will heal. Everyone experiences acne at some point in their life and you are not alone in it.