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I Am Slowly Learning To Stop Awaiting The Worst Case Scenario

I am slowly learning to stop assuming everything bad that could possibly happen is going to happen. I am not going to picture horrible things happening inside my head. I am not going to allow my fears to control me.

I am not going to waste my time trying to predict the future when there is no way for me to guess what is going to happen. I am not going to psych myself out by running through a million different scenarios through my head before leaving the house. I am not going to convince myself there are only horrible things awaiting me in the future because there is no telling what the day will bring.

From now on, I am not going to miss out on my chance at happiness because I am too worried about what is going to happen five seconds from now, five hours from now, five days from now. I am learning to live in the moment, to enjoy my peace while it lasts, instead of bracing myself for whatever is coming next.

I am slowly learning to stop thinking the worst of people — especially of myself. When someone takes a little too long to answer a message, I am not going to assume they hate me and are purposely ignoring me. I am not going to freak out about what I might have done wrong and how I was stupid for contacting them in the first place.

From now on, I am going to give others the benefit of the doubt. I am going to breathe deeper. I am going to calm down. I am going to avoid overthinking because it only leads me down a dark path of self-hatred and self-loathing.

I am slowly learning little things are not the end of the world. No one is going to notice when I stumble over my words or trip while I’m walking down the sidewalk. If they do, they will forget about it in a matter of minutes. They are not focused on me. They are focused on what they are doing, how they are feeling, how they are coming across.

There is no reason for me to dwell on the embarrassing things I have done in the past because no one cares about them except for me. They are not a big deal to anyone except for me. I have to remember that my mistakes belong in the rearview mirror, not in the passenger seat.

I am slowly learning to put more faith in myself. I am not going to assume everyone at a party will hate me. I am not going to assume an interviewer will turn down my resume. I am not going to assume I am not experienced enough, not pretty enough, not talented enough.

I am slowly learning to stop awaiting the worst case scenario. I am slowly learning to abandon my pessimistic way of thinking. I am slowly learning to hold onto hope that things will get better. TC mark


I Have A Love-Hate Relationship With Being Alone

I like being alone. The quiet comforts me. I would rather hear silence than the rumbling of a crowd. I would rather sit comfortably on my couch and read a book than spend an hour getting dressed to leave the house.

I am not a social person. I have trouble in conversations. I never know the right thing to say. I stumble over my words. I turn every situation awkward. Making eye contact is a struggle for me. I am happiest in small groups — or when I am completely on my own. I don’t like the pressure of being in front of people. I don’t like faking smiles and acting on.

I am an introvert. I like my own company. I smile my most genuine smiles when I am by myself. After all, I cannot stand most people. They only bring disappointment and stress. They make my days worse instead of better. I flourish on my own and flounder in groups. It has always been that way. I cannot imagine it ever changing.

I consider myself independent. I can take care of myself. I can reach success without a hand there to guide me. I don’t need to rely on anyone else to bring me happiness. I can create it on my own.

Even though I like being alone, at the same time, I hate being alone. I hate having a million things to say but no one to listen to me say them. I hate seeing posts about concerts and events I am dying to attend but having no one to drag along with me. I hate being cooped up in my house all day long because no one is around to convince me to go out.

I hate how small my circle of friends is. I hate how infrequently they reach out for conversations. I hate the small amount of notifications that fill my phone. I hate feeling like there is not a soul in this world who considers me a priority.

I hate wasting the weekends of my youth. I hate missing out on all of the things people my age are supposed to be doing. I hate feeling like every single day is a repeat of the last because my schedule never changes. No one invites me out. No one sets plans with me. No one wants me around.

Sometimes it feels like I don’t have anyone at all — and I’m not sure how to change that for the better. I’m afraid of going to the movies on my own. Afraid of initiating conversations with strangers. Afraid of attempting to make friends and failing miserably.

Even though there are moments when I want to lock myself away and avoid any form of human interaction, there are other moments when all I want to do is have fun with friends, go out and meet new people, actually live my life.

I have a love-hate relationship with my loneliness. Sometimes it saves me. And sometimes it suffocates me. TC mark


Alchemy was a medieval form of chemistry practiced throughout Europe, Africa, and Asia.

Alchemists studied the reactions elements made when brought in contact with each other. The main goal was to turn base metals into noble metals (primarily gold).

If you are interested in learning more about chemicals, these alchemy symbols will teach you about transformation, creation, and combination.

Alchemy Symbols


Alchemy Symbols

An upright triangle with a horizontal bar represents the element of air (it is the inverse of the symbol of earth). This symbol is associated with the colors blue, white, and gray. It is also associated with warmth and wetness.


alchemy symbols

Antimony is a lustrous gray metalloid. In addition to these two symbols, antimony was sometimes symbolized by the wolf because it represents man’s free spirit or animal nature.


Arsenic represents transformation. It is a well-known poison that can transform one physical appearance into another.


The symbol for bismuth looks like an eight with the top cut off. Little is known about this element, but it was confused for tin and lead until the 18th century.


Copper was associated with the planet Venus, which was linked to the goddess of love. Because of this, copper is sometimes represented by the same symbol as ‘female.’


A downward pointing triangle with a horizontal bar across the center represents the element of earth. It is associated with the colors green and brown. It is also associated with cold and dryness.


A simple triangle is the symbol for the element of fire because the shape looks like a flame or a campfire. This symbol is associated with the colors red and orange. It is also associated with heat and dryness. It is considered masculine.


The symbol for gold is a stylized sun. Gold represented physical, mental, and spiritual perfection.


Iron is the most common element on Earth. It shares the same symbol as the symbol for ‘male.’ It is also the symbol associated with the planet Mars.


Lead is soft and malleable with a low melting point. It is the first and oldest of the seven metals. Its symbol was associated with the planet Saturn.


Once ignited, magnesium is difficult to extinguish. That is why it represents eternity, infinite flame, and ascension.


Mercury, which is also known as quicksilver or hydrargyrum, represents a life force. It also represents a state that can transcend death or the Earth.

Philosopher’s Stone

This symbol represents the Philosopher’s Stone, which is a legendary substance. According to legend, it was supposed to be able to transmute base metals into gold. It was also thought of as an elixir of life that could cause immortality.


When Venus glowed brightly at dawn, it was called Phosphorus. This is because phosphorus seemed capable of holding light and would appear to glow green in the dark.


Alchemists thought platinum was an amalgam of silver (moon) and gold (sun), which is why the symbol is a combination of the moon and the sun.

Potassium Carbonate

Potassium Carbonate is a white salt that is soluble in water. It forms a strongly alkaline solution. Alchemists would sometimes refer to it as the salt of tartar.


Salt has its own symbol because it is essential for life. In alchemy, it represents condensation, crystallization, and the essence of things in nature.


These symbols represent silver, which is one of the seven base metals. It is considered feminine and associated with the moon. That is why it represents intuition, inner wisdom, and contemplation.


Sulfur represents evaporation and dissolution. Along with mercury and salt, it makes up the three primes of alchemy, which can also be thought of as the three points of a triangle. It was associated with heat, dryness, and masculinity.


Tin is associated with the planet Jupiter. It is considered the breath of life. Since it is a catalyst, tin also teaches a philosophical lesson that something standing alone is weaker than if it is combined with another alchemy symbol element.


The opposite of fire, this symbol is a triangle turned upside down. It represents air and resembles a cup or a glass. It is associated with the color blue. It is also associated with wetness and coldness. It is considered feminine.


This is the symbol for zinc, an element that is chemically similar to magnesium. Alchemists would sometimes refer to it as Philosophers’ wool. TC mark


You already know you shouldn’t toss a white shirt into the laundry with your colorful clothing, but do you know anything else about proper laundry etiquette? If the symbols on your shirt tags look like gibberish to you, then you might want to think about learning the definition of each sketch.

To make life easier on you, here are the meanings behind the different laundry symbols so you don’t end up ruining clothing you paid good money for:

Wash When you see this symbol, it means the article of clothing is safe to machine wash. You can place it inside of your washer without worrying about ruining the fabric.

Wash at or below 30°C When you see this symbol, make sure you wash at or below 30 degrees Celsius, which is equivalent to 86 degrees Fahrenheit.

Wash at or below 40°C When you see this symbol, make sure you wash at or below 40 degrees Celsius, which is equivalent to 104 degrees Fahrenheit. Wash at or below 50°C

When you see this symbol, make sure you wash at or below 50 degrees Celsius, which is equivalent to 122 degrees Fahrenheit.

Wash at or below 60°C When you see this symbol, make sure you wash at or below 60 degrees Celsius, which is equivalent to 140 degrees Fahrenheit.

Hand wash This symbol means you should hand wash the item inside of your sink or a bathtub instead of tossing it inside of your washer. It is too delicate to be put into a cycle.

Do not wash This symbol means you should not clean a certain item of clothing yourself. You should take it to get dry cleaned by professionals.

Tumble dry This symbol means the item of clothing can be safely placed inside of the dryer. It won’t get torn or fade from being bounced around.

Tumble dry at low temperature This symbol means you are allowed to place the item inside of your dryer. However, you should make sure you adjust the settings to keep the temperature low. Otherwise, you could damage the item.

Tumble dry at medium temperature This symbol means you should place the item in the dryer. However, you should not exceed a heat of 65 degrees Celsius (149 degrees Fahrenheit).

Tumble dry at high temperature This symbol means you are safe to place the item in the dryer. However, you should not exceed a heat of 75 degrees Celsius (167 degrees Fahrenheit).

Do not tumble dry This symbol means you should avoid placing the item in the dryer. You should let it air dry instead by placing it on a clothesline or across a tabletop.

Dry This symbol is the basis for all of the ‘drying’ symbols. What is contained inside of the square determines how you are meant to dry a certain product.

Dry in shade You might see this symbol placed between the symbols for line dry, drip dry, or dry flat. It means you should keep the item out of the burning heat of the sun as it dries.

Line dry When you see this symbol, you should hang up your item while it dries instead of placing it inside of the dryer.

Line dry in shade This symbol means you should hang your clothing somewhere in the shade, out of reach of the sun.

Dry flat This symbol means you should extract excess water and then place the item on a flat surface to dry. This will avoid wrinkles.

Dry flat in shade This symbol means you should place the item on a flat surface while it dries — but make sure it is not in direct sunlight.

Drip dry This symbol means you should hang up the clothing while it is still soaking wet so it can drip dry.

Drip dry in shade This symbol means you should drip dry an article of clothing — but while keeping it out of the sunlight.

Iron This symbol means an article of clothing is allowed to be ironed by a commercial iron you keep inside of your home. Iron on low heat

This symbol means you can iron with or without steam at a low temperature. Do not exceed 110 degrees Celsius, which is equivalent to 230 degrees Fahrenheit.

Iron on medium heat This symbol means you can iron with or without steam at a medium temperature. Do not exceed 150 degrees Celsius, which is equivalent to 302 degrees Fahrenheit.

Iron on high heat This symbol means you can iron with or without steam at a high temperature. Do not exceed 200 degrees Celsius, which is equivalent to 392 degrees Fahrenheit.

Do not iron. This symbol means you should not iron the article of clothing or press the article of clothing. Doing so could destroy the delicate fabric.

Bleach This symbol means you are allowed to use any type of bleach when it is needed. It does not matter whether it contains chlorine or not.

Non-chlorine bleach This symbol means you are allowed to use bleach on the product — as long as the bleach does not contain chlorine.

Chlorine bleach allowed This symbol means the item of clothing will not be ruined by bleach containing chlorine.

Do not bleach These two symbols both mean the same thing. You should never, under and circumstances, use bleach on the product.

Professional dry cleaning This symbol means you should not wash and dry the clothing inside of a commercial washer and dryer which uses water. You should take it to the dry cleaners instead.

Do not dry clean This symbol means you should never take the product to the dry cleaners.

Dry clean, any solvent except Tetrachloroethylene This symbol means you are safe to dry clean the product with any type of solvent except for Tetrachloroethylene, a chemical that is also sometimes known as Tetrachloroethylene orPerchloroethylene


Gentle cleaning with PCE This symbol means you can clean your product with PCE, which is shorthand for Tetrachloroethylene.

Very gentle cleaning with PCE This symbol means you can clean withTetrachloroethylene very gently. You just have to be careful because the chemical can cause color bleeding.

Dry clean, hydrocarbon solvent only (HCS) This symbol means a product should be dry cleaned with a hydrocarbon solvent such as benzene, kerosene, or xylene.

Gentle cleaning with hydrocarbon solvents This symbol means a product should be dry cleaned, but only on a gentle setting.

Very gentle cleaning with hydrocarbon solvents This symbol means a product should be dry cleaned — but only on a very gentle setting.

Professional wet cleaning Wet cleaning avoids the use of chemical solvents. This method is better for the environment. It also reduces the chances of a garment shrinking or facing damage.

Gentle wet cleaning This symbol means a product should be wet cleaned with a computer controlled gentle setting.

Very gentle wet cleaning This symbol means a product should be wet cleaned with a computer controlled very gentle setting.

Do not wet clean This symbol means a product should not be wet cleaned. It should be dry cleaned instead.

Summary Laundry Symbols

This is a chart containing all of the information you need to know moving forward. Now you can rest easily knowing you are never going to ruin your clothing. You are going to get your money’s worth.


1. Your life is going to be filled with people second-guessing every decision. Don’t add to it by being your own worst enemy.

2. You will fight with your parents. Realize you don’t always have to follow their advice, but also realize they aren’t the enemy. Try and take a step back and realize they always have your best interest at heart.

3. There will always be that one person from college that refuses to grow up. Don’t envy them. Learn from them. Take it a lesson in growing up and leaving the past in the past.

4. Friendships will change. Your college besties will always be people you think about fondly, but bonds will no longer be formed as easy as taking shots while figuring out which club to hit first.

5. You’ll notice a lot of friends walking in and out of your life. Don’t freak out. It’s normal. The older we get, the more our friendships change. It’s a natural part of life and the sooner we accept it, the sooner we heal.

6. Your friends will slowly start moving in with SO’s, getting married, having kids. A part of you will feel like they’re abandoning you and leaving you in the past. Understand that priorities change. Also make the most of those friendships before the inevitable happens and you start going your separate ways.

7. You’ll hold your first love on a pedestal. You’ll always view that relationship as better than it was. Understand that’s normal. But, also realize that relationship represents a time of being young and free.

8. At company events with free alcohol – there will always be that one person that’s had one too many. Never be that person. You’ll always regret it come morning.

9. There will come a time where your body can no longer handle repeat instances of binge drinking. It’ll make you so unbelievably sad – it’s your first step in realizing you’re growing up. Indulge in the pain. Feel it. And then move on. Take it as a sign that your body is telling you to slow down.

10. Having a job means showing up every day, even if you don’t want to. Gone are the college days where you could skip a class with little to any consequences. It’ll suck at first, but you’ll slowly get used to it.

11. Take care of your mental health. You’re allowed to take a day off every once in a while to take care of yourself.

12. Find a work bestie. You spend about half your waking day there. You’re going to want someone to help you when you need to pull a fast one on the boss.

13. How I Met Your Mother was right – nothing good ever happens after 2 am. But, with that being said – sometimes you have to indulge in your impulses. It definitely won’t be the smart choice. But, you’re also on the cusp between young and being a full-blown adult. You’re allowed a few reckless choices before you grow up entirely.

14. Your ex’s will start getting engaged one by one. Don’t panic. You weren’t wrong in ending all your past relationships.

15. FOMO will always be real, especially as a millennial where you see everything blasted on Instagram and Snapchat. Realize it’s fine to want a lazy day in. Netflix and wine with #nofriends is definitely an acceptable Friday night.

16. You’ll never be too old to ask your parents for their Netflix/Hulu/HBO passwords.

17. You may go years without seeing your college best friend. Realize this is normal. But, also realize when you eventually do reunite, it’ll be like nothing’s ever changed.

18. Go to the dentist. I know the dentist sucks, but trust me, you don’t want to be old with dentures.

19. Don’t let your number ever determine your worth in life. Never feel ashamed or the need to make it higher or lower. Be who you are and own it.

20. Realize people change. Hangout with your old high school friends and find it weird ordering a glass of wine legally. Meet up with your college roommates and debate grabbing beer instead of taking shots. But, also realize people aren’t their past mistakes. We all eventually grow up and change.

21. It’s definitely acceptable to fall asleep at 930 pm on a Friday night.

22. Learn to stand up for yourself at work. If you don’t agree with someone else’s viewpoint, learn to bring up your own ideas. Don’t be afraid to challenge others, but also learn the right and professional way to do it.

23. Drunk texting is almost always a bad idea. But, sometimes it’ll be the exact mistake you need.

24. Ask for help when you need it. Realize it doesn’t make you weak. We all struggle sometimes.

25. Take time to enjoy all the little moments. Before you know it, you’ll be in your older, married, busy with your own kids. TC mark


Last week, my boyfriend told me he loved me for the first time, after two and a half years of being together.

Most women would be shocked. Most women would have either questioned him a long time ago for not saying those words, or they would’ve taken control and been the ones to say them first, and probably gotten an “I love you too,” in return.

But not me.

Because I was waiting for him to open his heart and say them. I didn’t want to force those words out of him and hear them when he just wasn’t ready. But at some point along the way, I gave up waiting.

I wondered why he never said them, yes. Of course I did, I’m only human. But I never doubted he felt it.

And I empathize with him.

I understand that some of us find it difficult to say the words we mean. We’ve grown up with Dads who never said “I love you” to our Mums; or parents who never told us we were loved, as they tucked us into bed each night.

It didn’t mean they didn’t feel it.

It didn’t mean we felt unloved.

It didn’t mean much at all.

It was just the way things were.

So over the past two years, I just grew to accept that this was the way things were.

For whatever reason, he couldn’t say I love you, and even though my ego planted a seed of doubt inside my mind; deep down, my soul knew that this man loved the bones of me.

Finally last week, he told me.

He apologized for having not said it sooner.

And he has been saying it ever since.

So have I.

And if I’m being honest, I still struggle to say it. I’ve only said it to my parents a couple of times in my lifetime. I’ve never said it to a man – because I’ve never been in love, until now.

Sometimes my heart will swell and my veins will flood with love for this man, yet I find my mouth glued shut and my voice dies inside of me.

Sometimes, I’ll be sat meditating peacefully in a yoga class, and I’ll be overwhelmed with feelings of love for him.

Sometimes, I’ll be making us grilled cheese sandwiches in the kitchen, and something reminds me of how beautiful what we share is.

Sometimes, he’ll unlock our front door and move aside to let me walk through first, and I melt at his sweetness.

You see, there are so many times I feel tidal waves of love for this man, but something inside of me stops me from expressing it.

How could I possibly be frustrated at someone for not saying the words that I have been terrified to say my whole life?

And there’s the other part me that’s glad he waited.

So many people blurt those three words out with no understanding of what they mean. They say it because it feels good to make someone else happy. They say it because they want to believe they’re in love when they aren’t. They say it because they’re too afraid to be honest – with themselves, and with others.

Millions upon millions of people will say, “I love you,” today, but how many will mean it?

How many of those people will stand by their words, and match them with their actions?

I feel content knowing that I have never thrown those sacred words around without conviction, and neither has he.

What I wish to tell you is this:

You don’t need to rush to say those words. And you needn’t be afraid to say them when they stir within.

We waited more than two years to say I love you, and I’m okay with that.

It was worth waiting for. TC mark


people holding yellow, green, blue, and purple flagTristan Billet / Unsplash

June is Pride Month, but did you know October is LGBTQ+ History Month? It is. And even if you don’t identify as LGBTQ+, there are plenty of ways you can celebrate the month and beyond as an ally. All are welcome.

Being an ally isn’t as simple as just assigning yourself that label or going to Pride events, however. Allyship is accepting your privilege as someone who is not part of a marginalized group — and also accepting that you likely don’t fully understand the experience of someone who is. As Emery Vela, a GLSEN student ambassador, put it, “there is not a template for an ally that fits every queer person you meet, and each person will need something different from you.” Always remind yourself that every LGBTQ+ person is unique, and every LGBTQ+ person’s experience is unique. Never make assumptions, ask how you can help, and be as supportive as you can to a group that needs it in today’s political climate. After all, 1 in 5 LGBTQ+ people experience homophobia on a daily basis.

LGBTQ+ History Month is a great time to support LGBTQ+ individuals and work on being an ally, but it’s also something that is important to do year-round. Here are 5 ways to support the community this month and beyond.

1. Acknowledge LGBTQ+ History Month and all other important dates for the community

This might seem too obvious upon first reading it, but seriously, it’s important. Just acknowledging the fact that it’s happening is a form of support, and it can encourage others to show their support as well. This can be as simple as a tweet, a Facebook post, a conversation in the office, etc. If you aren’t sure what to write, find a great quote from an LGBTQ+ person, share an article, or, better yet, ask an LGBTQ+ friend what would mean most to them. LGBTQ+ history is part of everyone’s history, so let’s talk about it.

2. Read up on issues or just generally educate yourself

Even if you consider yourself well-educated about the current issues that the LGBTQ+ community faces, try to see if there’s something new you can learn. If you aren’t sure where to start, ask someone in the community what in society is concerning them most. Then, go learn about it. Alternatively, you can use the guide to Coming Out as a Supporter from the Human Rights Campaign as a starting point.

3. Donate to an LGBTQ+ cause

There are a lot of organizations in the United States and around the world doing amazing things for the LGBTQ+ community — and you can support them. The Trevor Project provides “crisis intervention and suicide prevention services to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer & questioning youth.” The Transgender Law Center “is the largest national trans-led organization advocating self-determination for all people.” CenterLink “develops strong, sustainable LGBT community centers and builds a thriving center network that creates healthy, vibrant communities.” You can also look for a local organization near you and see how you can support their efforts in your area.

4. Make purchases to support organizations or LGBTQ-owned businesses

This can take many forms, so it’s really up to you. You can look at the local chapters of the National LGBT Chamber of Commerce to find businesses certified as majority owned by LGBTQ+ individuals. Alternatively, you can make a purchase to support GLSEN, a K-12 focused organization, or purchase this wine that supports The Trevor Project.

5. Participate in a local event or get involved in an organization

Never feel like you can’t participate in an LGBTQ-focused event because you aren’t part of the community. Unless the description explicitly states that it’s meant for LGBTQ+ individuals only, you can always come to show your support at an event. Look for advertised happenings around your area or on Facebook, or look for a local organization to get involved in. PFLAG “is the extended family of the LGBTQ community. We’re made up of LGBTQ individuals, family members and allies. Because together, we’re stronger.” Find your local chapter and see how you can be an ally to their efforts.

Let’s celebrate LGBTQ+ History Month now as well as the LGBTQ+ community, no matter the month. TC mark


Whenever you’re starting to incorporate small changes in your life for the better and to heal from an existential crisis, you inevitably experience resistance. Despite how often creative influencers talk about this when they’re starting to pursue the life of their dreams, resistance can happen to anybody, not just artists and entrepreneurs.

Resistance is traumatizing. It’s why you feel a formidable force within you and then suddenly fall into the depths of paralyzing self-destruction and anxiety. It’s why you experience long periods of feeling stuck and being unproductive shortly after you deliberately act upon your plans to become more productive. It’s why you go through alternating cycles and fluctuate between operating with an abundance mentality and a scarcity mentality. It’s why you ruthlessly battle yourself from within and do the things you don’t want to do and postpone the things that you truly desire for yourself, which makes you feel exhausted, defeated, and overwhelmed with fear of the future.

Here are 8 reasons why you face intense resistance right after you take actions to change your own life:

1. Your self-destructive yet pleasurable coping mechanisms are there because they serve to make you feel more comfortable and stay “safe,” so anything that undermines them makes you feel afraid and uncertain.

If you want to stop watching too much TV, eating too much comfort food, doing what other people are doing to avoid conflict, spending as a means of escapism, trying to make your life look better than it is, or staying in a dead-end job, your basic human self wants to keep you where you’re at and ensure that your desire to remain in your comfort zone supersedes your desire to venture into the unknown, realize your full potential, and take bold actions to move yourself towards something more fulfilling and lasting. Resistance is fueled by fear of what isn’t comfortable or predictable, and this is why you hold yourself back from achieving things that you have potential for and from living the life that you’re capable of creating.

2. After being used to going after what brings comfort and pleasure for so long, your mind perceives all unfamiliar changes as threatening.

Being productive, healthy, selective about what you bring into your life, and creative are things that feel uncomfortable because they do not offer instant gratification that the human brain craves. Most people stay small because they seek things that are easier to get and offer short-term pleasure, which is why they find it hard to stick to good habits and as a result, remain stuck in life. Lifestyle changes are rooted in the transcendent self – the self that desires self-actualization, radical honesty, seeking creative heights, and becoming more than what the animalistic self can be. Unfortunately, the average human does not operate this way naturally, so it can be difficult to escape from a lifestyle that puts short-term survival that feels comfortable over long-term evolutionary growth that feels uncomfortable.

3. You’ve been conditioned to compete with everyone else for superiority from a place of scarcity. You were raised to fear all alternative paths and imagine the worst possible outcome if you don’t do what’s expected of you and if you venture beyond what others tell you is realistic.

In high school, you did this by overexerting yourself to get the best grades in everything (since being a good student in a few subjects you like isn’t seen as sufficient enough) and do activities that you honestly didn’t care about just to look good for college admissions. In college, you probably did this by studying hard in a major that’s lucrative (regardless of your personal interests) to appease your parents. And now, you’re experiencing the pressure to rely on Corporate America to sustain you for 40+ years, and you still view everything else as a route to poverty and misery, even though super inspiring, self-motivated, and talented people around you prove that this isn’t true. You find it hard to change your mindset from scarcity to abundance.

4. You’re easily overwhelmed by the wide gap between your ideal lifestyle and your current one and find it difficult to reconcile the desire to change everything at once and the reality of changing a little bit at a time.

You want instantaneous results and beat yourself up for not exerting enough willpower to be where you want to be fast enough. You know there are many things you need to change in order to become the most ideal version of yourself – the one that’s always productive, relentlessly creative, resourceful, financially stable, and not dependent on an average job to pay the bills. Because there is such a large contrast between who you are now and who you want to become, you want to get your act together on the first try but you easily get discouraged when you don’t get results. That’s because you’re more concerned with how other people would perceive your life, so you become more self-conscious and unable to remain consistent.

5. You suffer from self-doubt and fear showing any form of incompetence, so you hold yourself back from trying new things and going after what you desire most, since you feel like you’re not qualified enough as you are now.

You postpone major plans and procrastinate on establishing new, healthier, and life-changing habits that you know are good for you simply because you think you aren’t capable or competent enough to maintain these things in a way that shows outward success. You think you need to cram in five years’ of progress into one week and become a totally new person right off the bat or else you don’t deserve to go after what you want.

6. Regardless of what your life situation is, you think you’re behind other people. Thus, you underestimate the power of small changes because seeing the long distance between where you are and where you think you should be causes you to feel discouraged and hopeless.

You experience difficulty in changing your life because you think it’s too late and believe that unless you root out all that is holding you back in one day, you really have no hope in building a lifestyle from the ground up. You also beat yourself up for not starting to change your life five years ago and are hung up on the regrets and mistakes you’ve made that led you to where you are now.

7. You confuse unrealistic standards with being effortless.

You might genuinely want to change your life so you can focus more on what brings you joy, but there is a part of you that wants acceptance and outward success, even in pursuing what you want in spite of opposition from others that think you’re a failure no matter what you do. You think that doing things effortlessly requires you to churn out more work than what is actually possible for you and be productive all the time, which causes you to feel guilty and believe that you’re undeserving of your greatest dreams, since you feel like you’re not productive enough – ironically, this causes you to be very unproductive, and fear keeps you in a cycle of putting off everything for the next day because you’re afraid of not doing it effortlessly on your first attempt.

8. Your mind is transfixed by the future, frozen in the past, and scattered in other people’s heads. Anywhere but the present.

You experience intense periods of resistance because you worry too much about the worst possible outcomes of the future. Likewise, constantly ruminating over what you’ve done in the past also holds you back from focusing on what you’re doing now. You also dwell too much in other people’s heads and repeatedly beating yourself over what they think of you and how they’d react to what you do with your life. This is why you are indecisive about the step you’re about to take and are easily overwhelmed with the number of options you have, and this is resistance’s greatest factor that makes you process a variety of illusions that are all fear-inducing, which causes you to feel stuck and unable to pursue the life that you want to create for yourself. TC mark


Aries (March 21st-April 19th)

Pushing others away/Losing People

You’re one stubborn person, and you and everyone you know is fully aware of it. Though you come off as a carefree, tough exterior kind of person, underneath is the terrifying thought that your brash attitude and hard-headedness will drive away the people you actually care about in your life and that you’ll lose out on ever keeping them in your life. It’s enough to scare you to death if you let it.

Taurus (April 20th-May 20th)


You aren’t terrified of all change, but too much of it at one time is enough to set you on edge. Whether it’s relationally, financially, or professionally, you are sure to have an internal meltdown if things surrounding you feel unstable or change too much in a short time. It’s the kind of thing your nightmares are made of.

Gemini (May 21st-June 20th)

Not being able to express their true selves

You are as expressive as they come, and you love to dazzle people with your knowledge and skills in what seems to be every arena there is. Yet if you are placed in an environment that restricts you from being yourself to the fullest extent, or worse, an environment that causes you to believe you aren’t nearly as impressive as you thought you were, nothing could terrify you more than the possibility even remotely becoming a reality.

Cancer (June 21st-July 22nd)

Being rejected and ending up alone

No one loves to be in love as much as you do, and your hopeless romantic spirit is something to cherish. Yet we all know that as much as we’d love our happy ending, riding off into the sunset with our one true love, that this isn’t always the reality we end up with. Sometimes you allow your thoughts to wander over the idea that the person you’re infatuated with will reject you if you put yourself out there, and that you’ll eventually end up alone for the rest of your life. Even just the idea is enough to break your heart AND scare the hell out of you.

Leo (July 23rd-August 22nd)

Being ignored

Everyone loves you, and you love that they do. You’re as fearless and lovely as they come, so why wouldn’t people notice you? However, the terrifying thought that creeps up in the back of your mind sometimes is that your talents and attempts to entertain will go completely unnoticed. You worry that even if you disappeared from the spotlight, no one would care or even notice, and it’s enough to send you in a spiral if you dwell on it too long.

Virgo (August 23rd-September 22nd)

Not having control of their lives/thoughts/anything really

Most people would say that, realistically, you can’t have control over everything in your life. But you might be able to get them to take it back if they followed you around for a day. Sometimes everything in your life seems to do exactly what you plan for it to. However, the thing that terrifies you on a regular basis is the fear of not having control or losing it altogether. You like structure, and you know what’s best for yourself, so not being able to control your thoughts, feelings, or life in general really is what your nightmares are made of.

Libra (September 23rd-October 22nd)

Being backstabbed by someone they care about

You aren’t one to go back on your word once you’ve committed to something, and you hold your friends and partners to the same standard. So it’s understandable that one thing that absolutely terrifies you is someone completely betraying you, regardless of the reason. You wouldn’t dream of doing anything like that to someone you care for, and the possibility of anyone doing that to you is enough to cause all sorts of panic inside your mind.

Scorpio (October 23rd-November 21st)


On the surface, you are very calm, cool, and collected. You like to give off the vibe that you don’t really need anybody, but you know it’s just a front. You have such a wellspring of love and compassion under the surface, though very few people ever get to see it. The moment people start getting too close and cause you to want to open up, it’s enough to set you on edge, and your reflex is to run as quickly as you can in the opposite direction. Vulnerability doesn’t just make you uncomfortable, it’s what sends chills running down your spine.

Sagittarius (November 22nd-December 21st)

Being restricted/controlled

It seems the world is continuously calling your name to explore and see all it has to offer, something you’re more than happy to do. The thing that absolutely terrifies you is being restricted and not having the freedom to explore and do the things you want to do, on your own terms. The thought of you being put in that kind of situation honestly makes your skin crawl.

Capricorn (December 22nd-January 19th)

Experiencing failure

It’s hard to picture you not succeeding in what you do, especially considering how hard you work. Yet that is the exact thing that worries you constantly—that you’re going to fail, regardless of your best efforts to succeed. The idea that you could work harder than anyone, invest more time and resources, and still end up a failure? It’s a wonder you ever get any sleep at night.

Aquarius (January 20th-February 18th)

Being forced to live a conventional life

While some may worry that their lives will be thrown off kilter by change and abnormal situations, you worry about quite the opposite. You’re certainly one to march to the beat of a different drum, and that’s just the way you like it. Yet if you ever were forced to live what most would consider a “normal” or “conventional” life? Shivers go down your spine just reading that sentence.

Pisces (February 19th-March 20th)

Harsh criticism and Confrontation

You’re a sensitive soul, and it’s something many people appreciate about you. You would go out of your way to help anyone who asked for it, whether it’s a helping hand, an ear to listen, or a shoulder to cry on. Yet the thing that terrifies you is someone not only critiquing your efforts to help but doing so bluntly or harshly that doesn’t even take a moment to spare your feelings. You would rather avoid confrontation at any cost because even the scenarios that run through your mind are enough to scare you speechless, much less dealing with the real thing. TC mark


I Thought My Anxiety Would Leave Me Alone After High School

High school was the worst. I would do well on tests but my participation grade would ruin my high scores. I would struggle to pay attention in class because all of my focus was on whether or not the teacher would call on me without my hand raised. I would freak out if we were placed into groups for projects or if I was called up to the board to solve an equation or if I was chosen to read a paragraph aloud from my seat.

I couldn’t wait to graduate because I thought the adult world would be easier to maneuver. I thought the freedom would help. I thought my anxiety would ease up after high school — but it’s not something that is going to go away. It’s going to haunt me forever.

Now, I struggle with phone calls. Not only important ones with my boss that have the potential to make or break my career, but also phone calls to hair salons and pizza parlors. Phone calls to banks and dog groomers. It can take me hours to work up the courage to press dial. Sometimes I hang up as soon as I hear the ringing. Sometimes I convince whoever is nearby to do the talking for me.

Even though high school is over, I still experience the same anxiety I felt while sitting inside a crowded classroom. I get nervous at parties when people are clustered into groups and it feels like I am the only one not talking. I get nervous when approaching cashiers at the grocery store because there is a chance my credit card will get declined or my bags will tear or my change won’t be placed back into my wallet fast enough.

I have reached an age where I am technically considered an adult, but my anxiety makes me feel like a child. I feel like I should have outgrown my fears by now. I feel like my nervous habits make me come across as immature. I feel like I should have my shit together by now. But when I feel those things, I have to remind myself it is my anxiety talking. It is my anxiety tearing me down and telling me lies.

Unfortunately, my anxiety has not disappeared since high school ended. It has only revealed itself in new ways. And that is okay. That is not as uncommon as I think. So many other people are struggling with the same things as me. So many people are silently fighting similar battles.

Anxiety is going to follow me around for as long as I live, so I have to stop trying to outrun it. I have to accept it. I have to learn coping mechanisms for it. I have to stop hoping for a future where things are better and start learning how to put plans into place to make today better. I have to find a way to manage my anxiety because it is never going to go away on its own. TC mark


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