A mental health chat


I don’t think the main issue is me being ‘cured’ as such. When I open up about my anxiety, I openly know and accept that it will always linger and won’t ever go away.

It can get extremely scary sometimes. Being constrained to your own thoughts of utter hopelessness and feeling like the whole world is closing in on you. To be honest, I thought that those feelings were normal a year ago. I thought that it was something everyone went through on a daily basis, and that crying at 1am in the morning over people in my life ‘hating’ me was normal.

I was definitely never as open with my mental illness as I am now. I still struggle to explain to my parents regarding what is going on in my head because I feel like I’m going mad. I mean, how come I think all my friends hate me? How come I believe I’m a burden and no one wants to be around me anymore? It may sound completely irrational, but it’s real to me.

I denied the fact that I had anxiety. I refused to see anyone and get help because I believed that I was just wasting people’s time if i did seek help because obviously, others deserve it more than me. I turned into a train wreck. I turned into someone who I din’t recognise anymore, and that is one of the scariest things I’ve had to endure yet.

It’s not just ‘feeling anxious in public.’ As much as I have those days where I don’t want to leave my house because I feel physically sick at the thought of being in public, it’s a lot more than that. The thing with generalised anxiety disorder is that it’s like everything you imagine anxiety to be, and a whole lot more. I wish people understood that it was a lot more than just feeling ‘on edge’ now and then. Everyone gets anxious. It’s human nature. Anxiety however is more feeling anxious and a whole lot else on top of that.

There are still times where I sit up at 1am in the morning and have to go to the toilet because I feel like I’m going to throw up. The thought of going on a ‘night out’ excites me (don’t get me wrong), but I get extremely anxious before the event. i hate how busy it can get and how trapped I feel. I worry about getting drunk before alcohol has even entered my system. I go over scenarios in my head over how to get out of a ‘night out’ and just run away.

But I don’t run anymore.

I make sure to put myself in the right mindset, and conquer. Defying all odds, I still end up going out. A simple task to many takes me hours of mental preparation to tell myself, “right, go out for your friends and have a good time.” My anxiety may be my mental illness, but it won’t be my downfall.

It can’t be cured. I can imagine myself even now starting my new apprenticeship and getting worried and stressed over having to interact with new people and to try to not mess anything up. It’ll always be an annoying linger, but it’s going to have to be an annoying linger that I come to terms with how to control. And my down and off days? I will face them head on. Because it’s okay to have those days, and it’s okay to have days where you don’t want to leave the house. It’s okay because in some ways, them days can make you even more determined for when you conquer those fears.

Love and happiness always,
xo, Becca

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Why my anxiety will never win


It’s not a secret that I have anxiety. Hi, yes I panic over people hating me, my friends not wanting to be my friends, and being a burdern to everyone in my life. Sounds dark when I put it like that, but it isn’t. I’m happy and positive 95% of the time. 

As completely irrational as it may sound to someone who has never had mental health issues before, it’s like constantly living with a ‘linger.’ It’s going to sleep happy you’ve had a ‘good day’ with low anxiety levels, and then waking up the next day and for some reason having a ‘bad day.’

When I talk about my anxiety, I am normally open about the thoughts and feelings that ferociously overflow my mind. As dark and depressing as it may sound, I live my life in the fear of people hating me. I could say something, and beat myself up over it for a good 3 days afterwards. I could worry about being alone and having no one whilst I have an amazing support group of people that surround me.

I recently had an encounter which made me extremely anxious. One thing I hate is being stared at and ridiculed, which happened to me recently and left my anxiety sky high. Although many people may have either brushed this off, or approached the person responsible and started an argument; this event left me house bound for 2 days. I had to drag myself out of the house on the following Tuesday. I was so displaced in who I was that I began to believe that I deserved to be mocked and humiliated- when I clearly don’t. The reason why I was put in that uncomfortable position is still a mystery to me, but it was the effects after what happened which triggered my anxiety to the worst point it’s been (probably ever).

When it comes to my anxious thoughts, I take comfort in a ‘safe place’ where I can talk to someone and let my thoughts and feelings out in complete confidence. Although my ‘safe place’ is no longer around, I have created my own ‘safe place’ in myself with a general plan of what to do when my anxiety reaches frightening points and I simply feel hopeless.

A couple of weeks ago, I wrote a blog post on my new semi colon tattoo. In all honesty, my tattoo has helped act as a personal reminder that my story is not ready to end. Shoutout to my anxiety- you will not win. Although I reach points of such hopelessness, separation and displacement; my high anxious times normally pass. I am a lot stronger than I give myself credit for, and sometimes being reminded of that helps me realise that my anxiety and my anxious thoughts don’t deserve to impact so much on my health and it’s all about control.

As completely absurd as this may seem to someone who struggles with anxiety like me, I now also put myself in purposeful anxious positions to show myself that I can do it. When I am in the right frame of mind, I become determined enough to order my own food, go out on my own, go to events by myself or even silly things like walking down a busy street and turning round to go in a different direction. When this blog post goes up, I’ll be at the Bloggers Blog Award event on my own. I would never have done that 3 months ago.

My anxiety does not difine me. It’s as simple as that. Ironically, I am a pretty happy and positive person. Just because my brain is wired differently compared to other people doesn’t suddenly mean that I am dark and depressed all the time. Because the reality is, I’m not. I am finally at a point where I’m understanding my mental health. Where I am ready to say “HI ANXIETY YOU WILL NOT WIN,” but also accept that it’s okay if I have a ‘bad day’ because it’s going to happen. Where I have finally plucked up the courage to admit that I need help in order to help keep my anxiety under control (yes, after months of waiting and years of putting it off after fear, I have finally been referred to a mental health clinic). Small, but positive steps… right?

My anxiety will always be there in some shape or form. The sad thing about mental health illnesses, is that they don’t just disappear. It will always linger, and it will always be a constant battle. Just because I seem happy one day doesn’t automatically mean that the thoughts of hopelessness and the fear of people completely hating me just don’t go away like magic. But who I fundamentally am and my personality will always be bigger and a more dominant part of me than my anxiety. Because I’ve accepted that I can suffer from anxiety, and love making friends. I can suffer from anxiety, and still be independent. My mental health will not replace the fundamental qualities of who I am.

Love and happiness always,

xo, Becca

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It’s okay not to be okay


We all have experienced points in our life when we’re “not okay.” But do we sometimes pressure ourselves too much sometimes to be okay and not accept that not being okay is totally normal?

As someone who has severe anxiety, both social and general, there are times when I get into really bad and scary states. I get angry at myself for having panic attacks, for nearly throwing up, or for hysterically crying on the floor about things that shouldn’t matter. I get the feeling that everyone is out to judge me and that me not being okay is me not being the person I aim to be which couldn’t be further from the truth.

Of course, I try my hardest to be an overall happy and positive person. If anyone knows me personally, you’ll know that that’s normally the case. In my mind, having ‘bad days’ is me letting myself down- and I’m my own biggest enemy. I judge myself and I pressure myself too much to be okay, without realising that it’s okay not to be okay.

This especially applies to my life and state of mind at the moment. After living my life for the past 2 months in complete happiness, I am slowly beginning to have anxiety attacks regularly again. I have waves of being okay and totally fine, to having panic attacks daily and I’ve noticed that this has been the case with my anxiety for a while.

In some ways, my state of mind is very contradictive at the moment. I’ve reached a stage where I’m confident in myself (especially in my body and appearance- it’s been a long time coming), and in who I want to become. At the same time however, I have been through some of the worst anxiety attacks I’ve ever had at the moment. I beat myself up over this- and blame myself. After all, it’s me who believes that everyone hates me, so how do I get back out of this vicious circle?

The solution? It’s okay not to be okay. It will pass. Let your body and mind have their ‘moments,’ and see past them. I’m a big believer in looking forward, not back, and that’s exactly where I’m heading right now. I have so many amazing things coming up in my life, with my blog; and life in general, and I have to go through the bad points to come out to the good. That’s why it’s okay not to be okay- not only because it’s human nature to not be okay sometimes, but also because not being okay helps make me stronger and more fearless to my anxious thoughts.

This is a message to all of you reading this right now: no one expects you to be happy all the time. You could be the happiest, bubbly, most positive person going and still have ‘off days.’ Trust me, it’s okay not to be okay sometimes. That’s what makes you most alive.

lil extra note: It would be very humbling to me if you could nominate me for a Cosmopolitan Influencers Award in the category Best Newcomer here. Here are also all the details you’ll need:

Thank you! xo

Love and happiness always,

xo, Becca

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Want 20% off your order at Coconut-Lane? Use the code ‘beccajayne20’ at the checkout to redeem…. go on! Why not treat yourself?

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Mental health stigma, why does it still exist?


It’s 1am and I have become so utterly annoyed / angry and irritated by the lack of mental health resources there is, and by how much it’s stigmatised.

For me personally, it’s wrong and upsetting that there are still people out there who are scared to talk about their mental health issues because they’re scared of being judged, or scared about everyone labelling them as something they’re not.

After struggling with bad anxiety for a couple of years now, it took me a lot to come out and tell everyone around me what I was experiencing. I was physically scared about them jumping to conclusions and not believing how severe my mental state was, and to some point is.

When it comes to anxiety in general, my favourite ones to be told are “you’re being stupid,” “just stop thinking about it,” “you’ll stop worrying about it tomorrow.” Mate, I’ve been worrying about my friends hating me and not wanting me anymore for over a year now… I don’t think it’ll pass by tomorrow somehow. And as for just forgetting about it, well, that really speaks volumes. Have you ever thought in that small minded brain of yours that maybe, just maybe, I’ve tried that about a thousand times and it hasn’t worked? Thanks for the advice though.

There are still people nowadays that see people with mental illnesses as complete loonitics who are “psycho” and should be in a mental asylum. Thanks for that. Want to know the reality of it all? The fact that, believe it or not, we’re not all depressed all the time, and we do have things in our life that makes us so happy. Ironic to you maybe?

For the record, I apologise for the amount of sarcasm in this post, but you know, it has to be done.

Okay so it’s 2016. People are becoming more aware of mental illness issues. People are now covering it more on social media. People are now helping to decrease the stigma. But with that, comes some people who think having “anxiety” or “depression” is cute. You know them pictures that totally romanticise what it’s like having an anxiety attack? The one where a model is lying on a nicely made bed with mascara running down their cheeks? Like this one for example.


Gosh I wish my hair, face and nails looked that good mid anxiety attack.

The reality of it all is being keeled over the toilet because you physically feel like you’re going to throw up. Or being so drained you can’t move, and feeling so ill you can’t manage more than 1 meal a day. It’s me having to force myself to go to lesson in college even though I’d been having a panic attack 10 minutes beforehand.

Open your eyes. 1 in 4 people in the UK experience some sort of mental health encounter in their life. Think of how many millions of people that is? This is going on all around us DAILY, and we still fail to understand and educate ourselves on something so serious.

Mental illness isn’t a joke, or something for you to roll your eyes at when people try to raise the awareness- it just shows the ignorance that surrounds the topic. Or for you to not listen to what it’s like to suffer from a mental illness because “it doesn’t concern you.”

Your mind and body are so precious and it’s about time we realised that we should look after that first and foremost. We can’t ignore these issues any longer. The fact that it can take 6 months to get mental health help from the NHS for even children as young as 10 genuinely upsets me. And that’s coming from someone who thinks our NHS is a blessing and which I am thankful for. BUT more needs to be done, and we can be the ones to do just that.

If you don’t take anything else away from this post, I hope you at least recognise how important it is that we don’t stigmatise mental health issues and that we’re less judgemental of them. There’s nothing worse than crying out for help from your “friends” and being told you’re being completely stupid and you can’t just think of sad things. Can I bang my head against a wall yet? This is such a reoccurring theme.

If you suffer any type of mental illness, don’t be scared to find the help and seek it. It’s just sad that we have to “find” the help we need, rather than it being there and easily accessible. I’m sure if you had a broken leg you’d know where to go to get it fixed. A broken mind is a different story, however.

“Be the change you want to see” and I won’t stop being open about my mental illness experience until enough awareness is raised to decrease the stigma that surrounds it. ALL mental illnesses should be made aware of. That includes anxiety, depression, OCD, schizophrenia, post traumatic stress disorder, bipolar, alcohol abuse, eating disorders, insomnia, borderline personality disorder, only to name a few. ALL should be raised awareness to, not just a select few.

I’m not a psycho. I’m not going mad. Most of the time, I’m perfectly happy. But if I have a panic attack, that’s not my fault. I certainly don’t choose to have them. 

If you also need any help, there’s this amazing website called mind.org.uk. They have an A-Z of the reality of all mental illnesses and offer support for sufferers.

Love and happiness always,

xo, Becca

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Want 20% off your order at Coconut-Lane? Use the code ‘beccajayne20’ at the checkout to redeem…. go on! Why not treat yourself?

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Connect:
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