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Being in lockdown during the pandemic has left many people feeling anxious. Anxiety can affect anybody and it can be quite difficult to deal with as there is no medicine that can magically make you feel better.

Anxiety is a mental health problem that causes somebody to worry so much that it has a very negative effect on their daily life. When anxiety takes over your mind and body, it is difficult to deal with it and only those who actively try to win the battle to anxiety, are able to relieve its heavy toll on our mental and emotional health.

One way you can relieve anxiety, is to go for a walk around the corner. Just walking for no purpose whatsoever other than to feel better, will actually help if only temporarily. 

We spend a lot of time wishing we could be doing something else, be somewhere else and in the company someone else. As time goes by, things don’t change that much and we can get frustrated with the same daily routine.

There is also an unhealthy obsession with travelling amongst the younger generation that is making them feel more and more anxious. This has a lot to do with social media and the pressure to look right even if inside their soul is rotten and hurt. An obsession with discovering what’s out there, with thinking that to find out who we are, one must go to the other side of the world.

However, if you haven’t found yourself in your own time and space, you may never find out who you really are even if travelling around the world three times. I’ve met so many people forever trying to find who they are, forever travelling, always certain the grass is greener on the other side. Usually they are deeply unhappy people despite the successful facade.

Pre-Covid times, human beings across the world were making more than a billion foreign trips a year, twice as many as 20 years ago. Surely this passion for travelling must have something to do with finding out not only about other cultures but also about ourselves too. Maybe we think we will find something we are lacking while discovering the unknown?

The writer Jorge Luis Borges used to say that the moment we find out who we are, is a key moment in our life. 

“Any life is made up of a single moment, the moment in which a man finds out, once and for all, who he is”

Travelling doesn’t really open your mind, that is entirely up to you and not to the trips you take each year. You can be an open-minded person stuck in a tiny village with hardly any money to make it to the nearest city, let alone around the world.

But if you have a curious intellect, you read and cultivate your mind, that’s worth a thousand trips even if you have never left your village because of your circumstances.When travelling around in Bolivia, I’ve came across large groups of “backpackers” acting like the snobs they were. They were always in their own groups, spoke only English and contributed little to the local economy.When we eventually had a conversation, it was all about how things were much better back home.

They are no better, they are different. That’s the whole point of traveling; the unknown, the different.If you expect things to run in another country just like they do back home, then by all means stay home.Those guys were not interested in the life happening in front of them, let alone Bolivia. They were there simply to tick the box of how many countries they have been to before 30 and that was making some of them anxious, as some within the group, had travelled more than others.

Truly, had they stayed home reading a book on history, or meditating, they would have done themselves a favour. They would have been more open-minded, cultured and less anxious.

Howard Stern once said; 

“If you want to be happy, once a week just go have breakfast in a diner or a cafe all by yourself. Bring a newspaper or book, sit in a sunny window, drink a nice cup of coffee, and read”.

Wise words. To find happiness, to find yourself, to live your life to the fullest, it is simple. No need to go to the end of the earth. Just go around the corner and have a cup of coffee and enjoy the moment.

It is the little things that count. So make your train journey count, your walk to the shops, your coffee break, your own me time, your meeting with a friend, your everyday. 

Forget about what you wish you could do and what you wish you could have. Whatever is it you are doing right now, whatever it is you have right now, it is enough. Even if you think that there is something that is making you anxious, it is up to you to allow it or not. 

Anxiety and stress are part of modern day living and it is easier said than done to tell someone who suffers from it; just go for a walk, just do meditation, just focus your attention on something else. Just try, try to do something as uneventful as going for a walk around the corner, perhaps listening to your favourite music every time you feel anxious and stuck in a body that is controlling your mind and emotions. It will help you.