Before I lay out the specifics of my plan with self medicating, I just want to say that I am in no way telling people to copy what I am doing. I have decided to do this on my own with out the help of any doctors or therapists involved.
Now I would also like to say that I know there is no magic cure for SAD. I know that I'm not going to wake up tomorrow suddenly a different person. My goal is to reach a point where my anxiety level is manageable enough for me to get a job. That is my ultimate goal, getting a job and working towards being more independent and moving out of my sisters house.
As I said in my last post, in my research about medication to help treat SAD I came across this article: socialanxietydisorder.about.com/treatmentoptions
After reading up on each of these herbs, I decided to try a combination of Chamomile, Valerian root, and Rhodiola rosea.
I know that there are medications the help with dealing with social anxiety, but I am personally really against medication. So before I try any prescription medication I would like to try a natural remedy.
The first part of my self medicating plan (SMP) is to take each of the herbs listed above daily.
I ordered these a couple of days ago, and I just received them yesterday. I ordered them from pureformulas.com they have free shipping and the prices are really low. I would have just gotten them from Amazon but because I am a vegetarian I had to do a little searching around for vegetarian capsules. The brands I ordered are Nature's Answer for the chamomile, 650mg. Nature's Way for the Valerian root, 530mg, and Now for the Rhodiola, 500mg.
Although the backs of the bottles suggest taking more than one capsule, or taking it more than once a day I'm just going to ignore that lol. Because I am taking these all together and not alone, I think that if I were to take more than one of each I might be over doing it. The only that I might take two of is the chamomile because its the one I'm most familiar with.
The bottle of rhodiola says to take it before bed, because I suppose it makes you drowsy but I think I might do a trial taking it in the morning with rest of them and see how I feel after a week. If I'm to drowsy then I'll switch it to night time.
I think that taking these daily will help decrease my anxiety.
Onto part two.
Part two of my SMP is to start to eat right again. I don't think I can fight my anxiety with out getting my mind and body on the right track. I used to eat very good until I moved in with my sister and started to feel like my move was being watched. Now I just hurry up and make what ever will take the shortest amount of time and go back to my room. I Need to get back to the way I used to eat.
Part two of my plan involves eating healthier foods, and drinking more water. A while ago after I did the lemon cleanse I stopped eating preservatives and artificial colors. I would like to get back to this way of eating. My ultimate goal is to eat majority of fruits and vegetables for all my meals. Because I'm already a vegetarian this would not be that hard of goal to reach. I was raised a vegetarian and have never tasted meat or fish in my life.
The only problem with this is that I don't feel comfortable eating the food in my sisters house, so I'm going to figure out a way to be able to pay for the fruits and vegetables I want to eat.
I really think this combined with the herbs will go long way in reducing my anxiety. I think that I'm going to have to work from the inside out to get the results I want, and that's going to start with eating healthier.
Part three of my SMP is to start doing yoga again. For me, yoga works as a way to calm mind.
I used to do yoga all the time until I moved, and the house was to crowded, and I didn't really feel comfortable doing it in front of any of the members of my family. So I stopped. But now that we moved into this bigger house and I semi have some privacy in the room I share, I think that I would be able to find the time to start again.
The only way I'm going to be able to get a handle on my anxiety is to calm my mind. The three things that work in calming my mind are yoga, reading, drawing/painting, crafting and other art related stuff, and daydreaming (maladaptive daydreaming to be exact, but we'll get into that another time). Because I already do the other two I think I need to add yoga back into the mix.
Not only does it relax my mind, but it also relaxes my body. Which will also be big help because my shoulders are always so tense because of my SA.
I really believe that that these three in combination will help me with my anxiety.
The fourth and final part of my SMP is to go outside at least once a day, even if its just to walk the dog. No matter how short the amount of time, I need to get outside everyday.
Not only do I feel like I need to get sunlight everyday, I don't think me spending days at a time in the house is doing me any favors. Even if I don't interact with anyone while I'm outside at least I got some fresh air for the day. I think this is another thing that help with calming my mind. I don't think staying cooped up in the house is helping at all, infact its probably making me worse. So I plan on going outside everyday, even if its just for a little while.
I think that with all of things working together, and with trying to improve my outlook and setting a goal ( getting a job, so that I can move out of my sisters house) will really help me to get a better handle on my anxiety.
When I came across the article I mentioned earlier I was in a really bad place and I think finding that article helped me to dig my self out of that spot. I think I have hope now, where as before I has none and I had basically given up on ever getting better with out using drugs (prescription or recreational).
I will be posting weekly updates on how this working out for me.
I really think this is going to work. Fingers crossed.