I have never really considered writing about my experiences with anxiety until I started reading the blogs on Moodscope. These blogs have really helped me over the past twelve months to put how I have been feeling into perspective and that, "it's ok not to be ok".

I have always been a bit of a people pleaser, as seeing other people happy makes me feel happy. Having anxiety, I have found that this has been more and more difficult for me to do and if I am honest, that is probably not a bad thing. I have found that I think about how situations now affect me rather than how it will affect them if I don't go to a party or gathering.

As long as I can remember I have always suffered with low moods and a few years ago I had my first bout of depression. It was awful, especially as people who didn't understand told me to "pull my socks up and get on with it". Funny how those same people when going through a similar thing and their whole attitude changed. About twelve months ago, I had my second bout of depression but it didn't come alone, it had a new friend called Anxiety! I could cope with the depression, been there done that, but the anxiety feelings were dreadful – like someone giving me a bear hug or an elephant sitting on my chest. I kept it to myself, I didn't really tell anyone in work or family and friends. It has taken me a while to come to terms with the fact that I have anxiety, and I am a little more open about it and don't feel so ashamed, which I had done previously when it all had started. I put this down to being because I am the one that everyone comes to with their problems and I couldn't deal with my own never mind theirs.

I have been very lucky in getting through this, I have a good manager who understands that there are days when I am not good and that I may need to go for a walk or plug into music when things get a little overwhelming. My small group of friends know when to push me a little to go out with them and they do it in a way that I don't always recognise that they are doing it – it is like they go into stealth mode!! I think by having these positive people around, that may not fully understand how I feel, but accept that I feel anxious has definitely helped me, together with accepting that "it's ok not to be ok" 100% of the time.

A Moodscope member.

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