teens

DON'T PANIC! I have a teaser for you!

See? I think that was pretty clever of me, that title. Anyways, every Saturday between now and October 8th, I'm going to share a teaser from Don't Panic. I really hope y'all enjoy this feature and that it gets you excited about the book. Don't forget to add it to your shelf on Goodreads!

I'm thrilled to be writing this book because I have so many expectations for it and I want it to be a tool to show other teens with anxiety that they are not alone. Plus, I have enjoyed writing this book. It has been helpful for me and my anxiety as well.

On to the teaser!*



Every single day, I walk into my classroom and get this urge to leave. It’s impossible to ignore. The longer I ignore it, the more prominent it is and the harder it is to pretend it isn’t there. It’s even worse when I have to speak or stand in front of everyone. All of a sudden, these things that didn’t bother me do. I have no control and I barely want to leave the house to go to school.
I freeze as I hear water rushing out of a faucet.
What are you doing in here,” a boy asks as he rounds the corner and sees me. “Are you okay?” he adds seeing my frantic expression.
Oh, no. I’m in the boys bathroom.


*Please note that these teasers are may not end up being in the final product of this book. Changes may be made. Please do not quote these teasers until you have checked against the final version.

Techniques

Since I'm sharing with you my triggers, I figured that if anyone else with anxiety is reading this, I don't want to discourage them. Therefore, I have to share some techniques on how to deal with it. All of the following help me deal with anxiety. They could help you too. It's worth a try.
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When I was in school and struggling, my "technique" was to dig my nails into my skin, using the pain as a distraction. While it worked for like 2.5 seconds, depending on the pressure I placed, it isn't a good technique. But here are some good ones:
  • Counting. I'm dead serious. Counting saved me one day. This serves as a distraction and allows you to calm down. I would count in sets of ten or one hundred depending on the severity. It didn't always get rid of the attack completely, but it helped. Even just a tiny bit is worth a try.
  • Positive Self-Talking. Throw away all of those negative thoughts and start thinking positively. Tell yourself that you can make it through this. Remind yourself of any accomplishments you've made with your anxiety. This also distracts your mind from the attack and could help.
  • Believe in yourself. You can't just tell yourself these things. Believing is part of the trick!
  • Cut back on the caffeine. You wouldn't believe how much caffeine plays a part in triggering attacks. Cutting back on this could mean cutting back on attacks.
  • Eat right. Being healthy plays a part too.
  • Massages. My personal favorite technique is to go out, once or twice a month, and get a massage. This is the ultimate relaxation technique for me. Being relaxed means not being uptight as often which will help you stay in control.
  • Breathe. Make sure you are breathing normally. Heightened breathing or slowing down how often you inhale and exhale can effect your attack as well. Take nice, slow, deep and even breaths.
Those are just a few techniques. Hopefully, they will help you. 

Please note that I'm not a professional and that taking my advice should not interfere with getting/taking professional help. I'm only trying to let other gain a better understanding and to help others know they are not alone. 

Cycle of Anxiety and an Example


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Anxiety starts as a simple thought. It then grows into more thoughts until it's all your are thinking about. Next, it stirs negative emotions within you and then you take action. Here is an example to help you better understand the cycle.

I'm sitting at my desk in school and the teacher is lecturing on some topic. A thought of how it's quiet and there's a test coming up. (Thoughts) I don't like silence. What if people can hear whatever noise I'm making? Why is everyone looking at me, even though their backs are turned? My stomach hurts. I don't feel good. I'm ready to get out of this room. (Emotions) The intensity rises and soon, I can't stand it any longer. I have tried and I can't do it any more. I get up and bolt out of the room. (Actions)

That's a sucky, but hopefully, good enough example. If you have a better example, please share!

Day One of Triggers

imgres.jpgI did a post a while back on a few triggers of mine. The triggers included silence around others, drive-thrus, pumping gas, and crowds. That post was done during a time when I had hardly no anxiety going on. I figured it's time for a more in-depth post about my triggers. This is to help others understand me and my anxiety more and as a mechanism for me to better know exactly what I'm scared of. Each day, I will go in-depth about a trigger of mine.

First, I thought it would be beneficial to see a generalized list of triggers that I found from The Reality of Anxiety, a blog I have become addicted to.


  • Play the What if Game and other negative self talk- Setting Ourselves up for Failure
  • Poor Self Esteem- thinking we're not worthy enough to be around others and be liked for who we are
  • Put too much pressure on ourselves to be "perfect" for others or not to have an attack
  • Focus on ourselves more than those around us
  • Eat poorly, drink a lot of caffeine
  • Do not exercise and or meditate regularly
  • Full Exposure to our phobias instead of baby steps
  • Do not get enough rest at night
  • Hold in our feelings
  • Do not focus on breathing deeply

  • All of the above are triggers that help set my anxiety in action. You'd be surprised at how often I've had to skip my caffeine love of energy drinks because it would cause me 3 days worth of anxiety. Let's get started, shall we?


    No_School.jpgSchool environment. As you may have noticed from my last two posts, school is an enormous trigger for me. Sometimes, I can't handle driving by one, much less going into one. Just yesterday, I felt sick to my stomach because I was in the parking lot of a local high school, waiting on my nephew. I feel like I could throw up just mentioning it! 


    High school was unbearable, especially my last year. I missed three weeks in a row because I couldn't find the energy to get out of bed or move. Anyways, being in the school environment causes me to panic.


    I start wondering if the students around me can hear the not always audible noises I'm making. The click of my pen, the scratch of my pencil on paper, the creak of my chair as my legs continue to bounce up and down and I continuously rearrange myself. All these noises and some that aren't really there are so loud in my head. My head starts pounding; my heart beats faster; my ears hurt; and I feel faint. All of those things begin happening at once with such intensity. 


    I've always been the child to make good grades. The pressure I placed on myself to excel in school did not bode well with my anxiety. Especially when I took two AP classes at once. Never again will I take an AP class. 


    Me+AP classes=tons upon tons of anxiety. 


    I remember one day, I got my report card and had to keep myself from crying in class as I looked it over because I had a couple of C's. There's no telling how much stress I had over that. I finished with a 2.6 GPA. Before my anxiety started becoming so severe, it was a 3.7. I don't know how to explain how much that bothers me. A carefree Lindsay does not exist. No matter what I say, I care about my grades and that 2.6 is killing me on the inside. 


    All this talk has left me exhausted. Hopefully, that's a good enough insight. :)


    Character Creation

    Ever wonder how a writer creates their character's personalities? Lifestyles? I know that I sometimes wonder that. Today, I thought I would share how I create my characters.

    Usually, they are already formed when I think of the idea. I know exactly how they will behave. Other times, I must give them personalities. There are three ways that these characters are formed.

    Family, friends, and myself. Those who know me personally and have read Sweetness say that they can see a lot of me in Emily. Why? Because I gave Emily a lot of similar traits, as you may have noticed in the comparisons I did. Drake has a lot of characteristics as my nephews, one in particular. Jake was formed partially from the traits I liked in previous love interests. Therefore, a certain part of all my characters derive from those I know.*

    Imagination. Isn't this where it really boils down to? Actually, I believe fantasy is a better word. As you may know, most of my books come from where I daydream to fall asleep. I create different lives that, even with the bad, I could see myself living. It's like imaginary friends that exist in a world in my head. You may as well say that I write to place myself in different situations to see how it turns out and the different choices one could make. However, once I get started, the characters sometimes go in a completely different direction than I originally planned.

    Magic. As I've said, sometimes the personalities are just there. I can't change too many traits that a character has because, in my head, they are already who they are meant to be and if I change that, then everything else could be altered in their story.

    *Note: That is not always the case. Sometimes, my characters form completely on their own based on their life experiences.

    When I Need Inspiration I...

    Inspiration is hard to come by sometimes. I have a couple of different techniques to help me become inspired. Today, I'm going to share those with you.

    • Listen to music. Pretty much any kind of music. My favorites range from country to R&B to rap to rock to the oldies.
    • My family. Sometimes, I get inspired by what is happening in our lives.
    • Reading. This should be first. Reading is the best way to get inspired. When I read a wonderful book, motivation sets in and I'm off to my laptop.
    • Quotes. Quotes are a fantastic source of inspiration. They really get my mind going.
    • Pictures. What a great way to wonder what the story is behind a picture and then creating it.
    These are my top five resources for inspiration. What inspires you?

    Ask the Characters

    It's Monday and a question has been submitted for Emily. If you have a question for one of the characters, click on the tab above and submit it. It could be answered next Monday. Hopefully, everyone will have a merry Monday instead of a moody Monday.

    Q: Why do you keep worrying over your mom? I understand how she treated you better than you think but Jake loves you why didnt you trust him?
    A: It was hard to not worry over my mom. It was even harder to trust someone that I just met after experiencing what I did. I'm sorry that you understand so well how she treated me. I've come to learn that trust is earned over time. Hope this answers your questions.

    Update Time!

    Hey y'all! I hope y'all experienced a sunny day. It's been storming on and off here all day. It's one nasty storm! A couple things have occurred since the last time I did an update post. Therefore, I know it is that time again.

    Sweetness is in the works of getting translated into Spanish and French. If that gets successful sales, then I'm Yours will be translated as well.

    If you are looking for a sweet deal on the paperback for Sweetness, then send me an email for a special link and coupon code to purchase Sweetness for only $5! Limited number will be given out so hurry up and email me at lindsay_paige@ymail.com

    My birthday was a huge success. I spent the day with my brother's girlfriend. I renewed my license, registered to vote, bought a lottery ticket (won two bucks!), and bought a can of air. Those ultra duster's for the computer...yeah, you have to be 18 to buy those. My friend and I went to the Adam and Eve store (not much there really) and Victoria's Secret. The ladies at Victoria's Secret were fabulous! They were extremely helpful and sweet. They even sang happy birthday to me!

    After that, I went and got a tattoo. Yup. The girl who faints from a shot or drawn blood went and got a tattoo. No worries. As long as I'm laying down or leaning forward, resting on something, I am fine. My tattoo is special to me because it has the colors and popular symbol (puzzle pieces) of the National Autism Society.

    This is an image that was taken right after the guy finished. It's on my left shoulder. Isn't it adorable?

    Sweetness and I'm Yours will be available on various e-formats (other than Kindle) the second week of March. (I think that's right.) Whatever It Takes is a bit behind schedule. I've got a couple of things to wrap up and then it's back to editing. I've got roughly 50 more pages to write before I can start editing.

    As for my other projects, I haven't worked on them much. I haven't been in the mood, but that's no excuse, right? No worries. I'm putting my butt back to work tonight.

    That's it for this update post. Have a lovely weekend folks.

    It's Official-I'm a legal adult!


    On this date in 1994, I was born. You probably thought I was going to go into details about weight and everything, right? Well, no. Isn't it enough to know that I was born?

    Anyways, I was named. Incorrectly. That's right. My name was supposed to be Lynsay, but my mom wasn't thinking straight or something and that didn't happen. No worries. I still love my name.

    Did You Know:
    -That I share my birthday with Enzo Ferrari. Yes, I can say that I share my birthday with the guy behind Ferraris.
    How cool is that?!

    Let's have a timeline of sorts here, shall we?

    Age 5: Started school. Cried every day for the first semester on the bus. Became an aunt.

    Age 7: Became a proud aunt of another nephew.

    Age 10: My grandfather passed. (I love you Papa!)

    Age 13: I'm a teenager. 

    Age 15: Got into a car wreck that year and became the proud owner of some sweet scars.

    Age 16: I can drive! Went to Costa Rica where I obtained yet another scar.

    Age 17: Published two books. Diagnosed with Generalized Anxiety Disorder and Agoraphobia.

    Age 18: Here I am. I can vote, buy a can of air or a lottery ticket, and test drive a car. How about this one?
     or
    My and my youngest nephew are going to test drive one of those babies. I'm so excited about it. I'm sure he is too. He's been talking about it all year. I would share some words of wisdom with y'all, but I could think of a lot of things- things I hope everyone knows already.

    Next big event?

    Happy Valentine's Day-Part One

    It's Valentine's Day and to share my love for you, I decided to write an extra scene of Emily and Jake's first Valentine together. This scene is going to be the first half of their date from Emily's point of view. I'm going to share Jake's half later today. I do hope you enjoy reading this.

    Stretching, a smile lights up my face with the thoughts of today's events. Jake said the day would be full of surprises. I can't wait to see what he has in store for me. Rolling over in Jake's arms wakes him up. A bright smile gleams back.
    "Good morning Sweetness. Time to sneak home already?"

    "Yeah," I say as Jake burrows into my neck.

    "Your hair smells so good. You always smell good," he breathes into my neck as his arms wrap tighter around me.

    "I got to go Jake."

    "I'm only letting you go because I'll see you again soon."

    His arms loosen and I reluctantly crawl over him and out of bed. He grabs my wrist as I start to walk away and pulls me back to him.

    "I know you aren't about to leave?" He pulls me down for a sweet kiss. "I'll see you later," his lips brush over mine as the kiss ends.

    Happiness overflows in my veins and it hits me. I love him. In a dazed state, I slip on my shoes. With a small wave, I leave Jake's room and sneak back to my house. The happiness dispersed and terror now fills me. Terror might be an overstatement. It's really giddiness, excitement, and terror. This realization is huge. I wish I could ask if I'm ready to let Jake have my heart, but that would be a stupid question. He already has it. The question is am I ready to admit this?

    To myself, sure. To Jake? Nope. Not yet. I am not about to open that can of worms.

    Back in my room, I fall back asleep. I'm supposed to be getting ready for my day with Jake. When Dad knocks on my door and tells me Jake is here, saying that I panicked is an understatement. I sped to the shower and in a record timing, I dressed in black dress jeans and a baby blue top. Rushing into the living room, I see Jake sitting on the couch with this hands grasped between his knees.

    "Sorry to keep you waiting," I say in one breath.

    Jake stands and he takes my breath away dressed in black slacks and a blood red button up shirt.

    "Don't worry about it," he says as he leans in to kiss my cheek. "You are beautiful," he whispers in my ear. My neck heats up and I immediately know that I'm blushing.

    "Thank you," I quietly reply. He holds out his arm and I link mine through his.

    "Y'all have fun now, ya hear," Dad says as we walk to the door.

    "Will do Dad."

    Jake opens the door to his Mustang and I slide inside. My eyes track his movements as he makes his way around the car and in beside me. He takes a second to look over at me and smile.

    "Where are we going," I ask to fill the silence.

    "You just sit back and relax."

    "Okay."

    After a few minutes, it's apparent that we are going to Wilmington. With a glance at the clock, I realize I made us an hour late. Goodness, I hope reservations aren't involved in our plans. Worry crawls over my skin and I give in.

    "I haven't made us late to some place, have I?"

    Jake reaches over and takes my hand. "You haven't affected our plans one bit."

    With this morning's enlightenment, I'm on the edge. However, Jake's thumb swirling atop the skin of my hand drift me away into a world where worries don't exist. It's Jake and me. I come so close to blurting it out right then and there. It doesn't happen, though. My lips are zipped tightly. It's 'round one o'clock when we arrive downtown at one restuarant that I've always hear fantastic things about.

    "Are you sure I haven't made us late?" I ask, remembering that there are reservations at this place.

    Jake quietly chuckles. "We aren't going there."

    "Oh."

    Jake gets out of the car and comes over to open my door. I step out and follow him past the equiste restuarant and down to a dainty restuarant. The place is bustling about with people and busy waitresses. An elderly woman greets us.

    "Table for two?"

    "Yes," Jake answers.

    She grabs two menus and leads us to a booth behind a young couple with the girl feeding a baby. Jake and I sit down across from one another. The energy of this place is amazing. I feel as if I'm in the comfort of my home for supper. My stomach growls as I read the menu. This cozy, active place is working its way into my heart.

    "Whatcha going to get," I ask Jake.

    "I've been thinking that we should have dessert for lunch."

    He looks up from his menu at me. That sly smile gleams at me from across the table.

    "How about we share a sundae?"

    "Sounds good to me," I say.

    The elderly lady returns to our table and takes our order. That smile is still plastered across Jake's face. He has something up his sleeve. I need to figure out what. I squint my eyes at him and a laugh escapes his lips.

    "What?"

    I lean forward and put on my best smile. "What do you have planned Jake? You've been wearing a mischevious smile since we got here. Go on and tell me what it is."

    With a small laugh, Jake shakes his head. "You just sit your pretty little head over there and relax."

    I don't take my eyes off of him as our sundae is placed in between us. Jake takes one of the spoons, dips it in the ice cream, and holds it in front of my lips. Slowly, I part my lips as the spoon slips inside. My mouth instantly cools as the ice cream melts. It is delicious. I'm lost in my world of two as Jake and I feed each other ice cream. All too soon, the ice cream is gone and Jake has lost his mind. Hanging fron his forefinger is a blindfold.

    "No."

    "It has to be a surprise, Sweetness. It's only for a little while."

    His smile turns my heart into a puddle and relectantly I agree.

    Bad Habits-Everybody has some.

    Today, I'm talking about bad habits. Everybody has at least one bad habit. Emily, Jake, Drake, Mike, and myself are here today to share our bad habits. Feel free to share your bad habits too!

    Lindsay
    • Procrastination. -When it comes to school, I put the pro in procrastination.
    • Impulsive. -Sometimes, I have these impulsive sprees. It's like a shopping spree, but worse. Thinking things through can be a tough task sometimes!
    • What my Dad said: Not keeping my clothes put up. (Lame!)
    • What My Momma said: "I don't know where to start!" Haha, thanks Momma.
    Emily
    Hi everyone! When someone asks about your bad habits, it's hard to come up with some. Here are the ones I have (and a couple of Jake's too!)
    • One of my bad habits is that sometimes, I care too much about what others think.
    • I'm scared to speak my mind when it matters most.
    • I try to handle things on my own instead of asking for help when I need it.
    Enough about me. Let's talk about some of Jake's bad habits that really irritate me sometimes.
    • He can be hard to talk to sometimes.
    • The littlest things can make him jealous. Who knew he was the jealous type?
    • Oh, who am I kidding? I love all of his habits- good or bad.
    Jake
    Such kind words, Sweetness. Thanks. :) I'll work on those habits. I, on the other hand, will not list any of Emily's habits. I'm just that nice. (That probably made Sweetness smile.) Let's see...my bad habits?
    • Occasionally, I get my priorities mixed up.
    • I take Sweetness for granted too much. (Thanks for all you do Sweetness!)
    • I have to agree with Emily. Sometimes, I talk when I should keep my mouth shut and listen.
    • I don't always handle things as I should.
    Drake
    Someone thinks I have bad habits? What?! I don't think I have any bad habits.

    Jake
    I can list some for you.
    • Talks too much.
    • Way too hyper early in the morning.
    Shall I continue?

    Drake
    Those aren't bad habits. Those are just things that make me Drake. :p

    Mike
    • Emily is my baby girl. I have to admit that pretty much let her do whatever she wants. I have a hard time saying no to my little girl. That's my biggest bad habit.
    Lindsay
    Well, I hope you enjoyed everyone sharing their bad habits. Except for Drake that is. :) What are some of your bad habits? Do you share any with us? Please share!

    Let's Celebrate!

    Sweetness (Bold As Love, #1)
    In celebration of  Valentine's Day and my birthday (20th), Sweetness will be on sale for 99 cents until my the day after my birthday. What better way to celebration these two events than with something as sweet as Sweetness. If you purchase a copy, please be sure to write a review! It's very much appreciated.

    Emily wished she was invisible. But after moving to a new town with her dad, a charming boy makes it impossible for her to disappear. Despite her feelings of unworthiness, Emily soon finds herself drawn to the safety of Jake's world.

    Good looking and the star of the hockey team, Jake has a lot going for him. What most people don't see is the difficult life he has at home. When quiet Emily steals his heart, Jake vows to help her discover she is worthy of love.

    Just when the two of them realize the sweetness of their relationship, they are put to the test. Only together can they overcome their haunted pasts to fight for a future together.

    Emily and Lindsay Comparisons

    Some writers will tell you that there is always a little bit of themselves in their characters. I have to agree with that. Some writers will also tell you to write what you know. That is something I can't argue with. Therefore, I thought this would make an interesting post. Below, I'm going to list the characteristics that are common between myself and Emily.

    -Anxiety. Emily suffers from just a little bit of anxiety from the abuse she suffered from her mother. I also have anxiety, but mine is more severe than Emily's. There will be a book with a character like myself this coming year hopefully.

    -Our love of hockey and Sidney Crosby. I love going to hockey games and I love Sidney Crosby. A lot of Emily's opinions of Crosby are my own. Emily seems more of a fanatic though.

    -Looks. Emily looks a bit like myself in terms of eye color and hair color. Hence, why I am on the cover of my book.

    -Ice Cream- In Sweetness, Emily goes to Dairy Queen and orders a banana split. It is Emily's favorite as well as my own. However, I'm not as big of a fan of Cold Stone as Emily. Why? Because their servings are too big for me! Emily's favorite flavor of Ben & Jerry's (Chunky Monkey) is also my favorite.

    Those are a few things that Emily and myself have in common. What do you have in common with Emily?