Anxiety disorders are the most common mental illness in the United States… affecting 40 million people. Once you realize that you may suffer from anxiety, you can start treating it. The FEARLESS Collection aims to educate, empower and reduce the stigma of anxiety disorders.
Your heart is beating a bit too fast and you have a sick feeling in your stomach. It’s all you can think about. That’s what anxiety feels like. What I just described is also the feeling you get when you realize someone you love is truly suffering from the mental torment that is anxiety. The primal response is, “I’ll fix it!”, but as often the case, we don’t know how. I had to figure it out for my son and now my passion is helping others get the help they need. I know it’s scary but, I promise, even mountains can be moved. With the right treatment, people get better. Fight for it, believe it and love with all your heart. Follow a few simple steps to begin the road to recovery, for yourself, or for someone you love.”
- Kim Vincenty
President of OCD Jacksonville
Anxiety is a general term for disorders that cause worry, doubt, fear, apprehension and extreme nervousness. It can cause panic attacks and physical symptoms such as increased heart rate, shakiness and sweating.
Anxiety Disorders can be caused by trauma, extreme stress, from a wide variety of external factors (work, school, finances, natural disasters, etc.). It can also be caused by medical factors, substance abuse, genetics, brain chemistry or a combination of these things.
Anxiety disorders can be very successfully treated. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Exposure Therapies, medication, and psychotherapy are all modalities for treatment. Practicing wellness, exercise, proper nutrition, relaxation and mindfulness can also be extremely helpful in overcoming anxiety.
The best way to reduce the stigma of Mental Illness is for people to meet or know someone that suffers. Never be ashamed of your illness (everyone has something!), or be embarrassed to admit your child, friend or family member has a mental illness. Seek out a support group. You will quickly see you are not alone.
Most national websites offer awesome suggestions for guiding a friend or loved one toward help. Know the information before you confront someone. Always show love and compassion but also a committed firmness to seeing them get well. Most importantly, do not accommodate obsessive or irrational behavior, remain strictly focused on the treatment that will get your loved one back to living the life they deserve.
- Get a proper diagnosis
- Ask the therapist or physician that gives you the diagnosis what the treatment options are and look into the local resources
- Educate yourself, consult mental health websites for information and referrals, click to visit:
National Empowerment Center
National Institute of Mental Health
International Obsessive Compulsive Foundation
Anxiety and Depression Association of America
Mental Health America National Alliance of Mental Health
National Council for Behavioral Health
Stand Up To Stigma
- Contact local affiliates of National Mental Health organizations Search local affiliates here
- Research a support group in your area here
- Tap into the wealth of information available on social media
Stronger Than Stigma
- Fear it, but face it!... and more than anything else, NEVER, NEVER give up.
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1(800) 273-TALK (8255)
“Since Anxiety Disorders have a negative stigma, they are not talked about and understood like physical illnesses. People don’t know a lot about it or don’t realize we or someone we love might have it, we don’t know what to do about it…and it feels shameful to talk about. We want to change that! Kim’s phone call to me about “doing something” together was the start of FEARLESS! We can’t wait to see the positive change this collection brings.”
- Patti Hughes
Founder & CEO of Natural Life