When I started this account I was in a pretty difficult position. I was crippled with anxiety and looking for ways to fight it, challenge my thoughts and ultimately overcome my mental illness.
Fast forward to now, and I feel in a completely different place. I’m no longer battling my anxiety and mental illness, but living alongside it and allowing it to do its thing, while still trying to live a normal life. I’ve stopped fighting, not because I lost but because I was tired of fighting. Instead, I chose to say ‘OK, you’re here and you’re a part of how I live my life. Let’s work together to try and make it worthwhile.
With that in mind, I feel the way I present myself on twitter is different from how I want to be presented. I named myself ‘The Anxiety Warrior’ because that’s who I was. My life was my anxiety and the account was focussed on that and that alone. Since then, the account has become more personal to me. I’ve made friends, I talk to people about all sorts of things, we help each other and I feel part of a wider community. I’m not just anxiety! I’m a family man, I’m northern, I’m witty (so I’m told…), I love comedy, I love humour, I love helping people, I love to engage, I love to cook and enjoy good food and I’m passionate about all things to do with mental health.
What I guess I’m saying is, I feel my name doesn’t quite fit me anymore. I’m not fighting anxiety, I’m trying to help myself and other people rise above it while growing a community around me where people can come and talk to me, ask for tips, share their experiences while realising that life goes on and we can be happier. I’ve remained anonymous on here for so long, yet recently I’ve felt the urge to be a little more true to who I am (though this will be baby steps).
I know to some people a name isn’t everything. It’s nothing in fact. But for me, this account became a big part of my life, and my recovery, so for me it’s a big deal.
What I’m saying is, does it matter to you? Does my name mean anything? Are you interested in WHO I am rather than the condition I have? Would it make you question whether we have anything in common at all?
Any discussion is welcome, and any suggestions also. I want to do this right so I feel comfortable myself while people around me do also.