Kim, 21, New York City, US

12308262_513069692200892_6801182759734251243_n“I am a professional by day, student by night and at all times just a human trying to keep it together.

Anxiety has always been something I have struggled with, however; it was when I changed my undergraduate major to psychology that I realized “Maybe I’m not just overly anxious ALL THE TIME.”

After a series of panic attacks, I decided to see a psychiatrist as my anxiety was beginning to interfere with EVERYTHING. Everything action was more thought out and planned, I seldom wanted to leave the house because what if …… happened and I have a panic attack and who will be there to help me hold it together? Will anyone help me? Will people just assume that I’m “crazy”? There was never a second where I was not overthinking anything I could potentially do.

I am diagnosed with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Adjustment Disorder with Anxiety, and Panic Disorder.

Now if I wrote that list for my mom and told her what medications I take to help me, she kind of freaks out a little bit, a lot of people do. Why?
There’s no shame in having and dealing with mental illness. And if medication helps you, then use your medication! But there are other ways I cope as well (I almost hate to use the word “cope” because I’m not just “coping,” I’m thriving”).

I work a full-time job while working toward my undergraduate degree while surviving NYC on my own and managing my own finances and responsibilities. It seems like a lot a to take on, but I do just fine.
Medication helps me, but so does good diet, exercise, yoga, and meditation, setting goals and practicing patience and working hard to achieve those goals.

I think the first part of dealing with mental illness well is to not be ashamed, don’t throw yourself a pity party over it. Kick Anxiety’s butt! Just because you have anxiety doesn’t mean you are anxiety, and just because you have a “mental illness,” that should never define who you are.

I hope this messages is received well and has a positive effect on someone. For anyone who is interested, I’m glad to answer any questions at”,



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