Not only does anxiety affect the person, it affects their family and friendship circles. It takes patience and understanding to work through and with their child, sibling, partner, parent or friend.
In my previous blog Training with Anxiety
I spoke of Penny who suffers with anxiety and how we workded together to incorporate training.
Penny’s mum knew she was struggling with school and life in general, lacking motivation, she had no self belief and was resistant to any suggestions of exercise/gym/training.
Penny often avoided PE at school because she often found it too physically challenging.
As a parent you want to help your child in any way and it’s hard to know when to push (so to speak), and when to stop suggesting, but seeing that your child is going downward in their self esteem and outlook on life.
We know that physical exercise helps those who are affected with anxiety and depression, through the natural release of endorphins.
Penny’s mum reached out to me through a referral to see if I could help work with Penny and her current situation.
We discussed some options and Penny came to see me.
At first I started to suggest a few things to do at home in between our meetings and training, but this overwhelmed Penny, even to the point she’d want to skip sessions, so we eased right off and worked on these triggers one by one.
What has been a wonderful transformation for Penny is that her mother can see that she enjoys feeling stronger, which in turn gives her increased confidence. (This is certainly a right step towards overcoming anxiety).
She notices how well Penny sleeps after a training session, she may come out of a session tired, but yet she is invigorated.
Penny’s mum said that the enormous shift is that she doesn’t ask to skip any sessions with me anymore, and has asked for extra sessions – how good is that!!!
A reason that Penny has done this is that I work with her at her level, there’s no pushing, only gentle encouragement that she responds to well.
Penny’s mum is very pleased that she has the opportunity to talk things through with me, even her personal things, which is a strong indication of the level of trust she has in me. She trusts the process and the physical gains.
Penny has at her own pace incorporated the tips and healthy suggestions we’ve spoken about, that her mum knows she can reflect on over the upcoming years.
This again helps towards the process of moving forward through anxiety and being able to live a life without the doubt and low self esteem. To be able to make food or treats for others is an act of kindness, and for Penny to do this for others will help her mental state.
“Penny still has a way to go to feel the confidence she’d like, but you can definitely see that she believes in her abilities more and has much more of a ‘can do’ attitude now.
She enjoys seeing the benefits of her training, both in her increased strength as well as her overall sense of wellbeing and loves telling people that she trains with you”.
How Penny’s mum notices how she holds herself now – with respect and self esteem.
I love this story and to add my side of it – Penny’s strength has gone up 75% in the gym, her ability to tackle new exercises shows her confidence.
Penny now enjoys time with new friends, doing things she has never done before, opening up to me as her trainer is a huge forward step and I look forward to more new goals for Penny to achieve in and out of the gym.
If I see this in Penny, I know her friends and family are loving her new found self love and belief…
I write this with real concern for teenage mental health, it has hit our community hard so far this year (not to forget the years leading to this), but going forward we need to help our teenagers fight mental health, and help their self belief within the community.
if you’d like help with anxiety through food and mood, plus the importance of movement.