The Worry Games

You Hold The Pen

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Living with anxiety, it can feel hard to know who you are anymore. The best thing to do at this point is to focus on who you WANT to be and get busy changing your life.


Anxiety Change Your Life

Anxiety Change your Life


I’m not really sure what the process is for deciding which souls enter each body and live each life.

Does God himself decide?

Is it completely random – left to the universe to choose?

Are we given a catalog of lives to browse through before our birth day and we get to choose which one sounds like a good match for us?

Sometimes I wonder if some kind of mistake was made and I got sent to the wrong body.  My entire life I have looked around at the setting that my life takes place in and the cast of characters that makes up my family and I mentally shake my head and think  “Nope. This just can’t be right.” 

Despite the fact that I love my role as a mom ( I adore my kids), and that I get great satisfaction from blogging about anxiety,   I have alway felt a little homesick for something, or someplace –  but I have no idea what or where it is.   It’s a feeling that I carry with me every day.   However, since I don’t believe the universe or God makes mistakes,   I have decided I must be here,  in this life,  for a reason.


Anxiety Change Your Life


It makes me smile to think that before we are conceived, maybe we DO get to choose which life we get and that, as I flipped through the “Pick Your Life”  catalog, I noticed the profile of this person named AnnaLisa Scott and saw the personality traits she was going to have and the life that lie ahead of her and, after saying “yikes” and cringing,  the competitive side of me kicked in and I said   “No, that is the life I want.  It is so full of challenges, losses and pain but I know I can navigate my way through her world and help her make sense of it all.  I know I can give this AnnaLisa person a happy ending.   Let’s do it.”

And in a lot of ways I  am  doing it.

I am a survivor.

Each chapter of my life has had its own issues.  My childhood had the lack of affection or attention of my parents and family.  My teen years had my parents divorce and my own problems with an abusive boyfriend.  My 20’s and 30’s were the very worst of my anxiety years and my 30’s were when I struggled with infertility and some very painful pregnancy losses, as well as my stepson almost dying in a car accident and the loss of both of my parents.   I have gotten through all of it and I think I am a stronger person for it.  But still….something has just felt “off” over the years.

Especially as I headed into my 40’s a few years back, I realized that my life needed some filler…less chaos and more substance.   I wanted to write some less dramatic chapters in the story of my life.  As somebody with anxiety, I am always focused on heavy, deep things and the circumstances of my life certainly helped promote that way of thinking.  But now I wanted new chapters that showed different sides of me and introduced new characters in my life.

But where to begin?  Just thinking about it felt very overwhelming.



I kind of floated for a that zone of being aware of how unaware I was about who I really am and what my future holds.

What else can you really do at that point but float and wait for some kind of inspiration or epiphany to guide you on the right path.

And then one day I thought to myself,   “Its clear I will never live the life I think I was “supposed” to have as a writer in a Paris with a family who adores me,  so lets work with the life I DO have.  I may not know exactly who I am, but outside of being a mom, and a strong confident person,  both of which I already am – who do I WANT to be?   Let’s start with that.”

The first thing that popped into my mind is that I want to be “together” and I want to look  “together” at all times.  

Does that sound shallow?   I have never been sure.  But I know that I had worked so hard to become a strong, independent person and I was tired of walking around like the hot mess mom with peanut butter and jelly smears on my yoga pants.  I was always unorganized:   messy desk..always missing a shoe…always late.   Now that my kids were a bit older, and I didn’t have to spend every waking minute taking care of them, I wanted to look like a mature, “together” woman.

I also wanted to have actual friends, not just a lot of “acquaintances”.

I wanted to let my wall of protection down and lower my expectations of people just enough to not boot somebody out of my life the second they didn’t live up to my high standards of what a person ought to be.  I wanted to make friends, have buddies… partners in crime to get out there and enjoy the second half of my life with.

Speaking of enjoying life, I actually wanted to leave the house from time to time and go do things.  

Being a stay at home mom and blogger pretty much means you leave the house to go the grocery store, doctor’s appointments or to go buy the kids something they need for school or their friend’s birthday party.   That’s it.  I wanted to leave the house and socialize and do fun things..maybe even just go to the park.   It didn’t really matter what it was. I just knew I wanted to get out into the world more.  Life was passing me by!

I also wanted to find some way to help me feel empowered.

I have become very confident over the years but that wasn’t enough for me. I had spent a lot of my  life being victimized and feeling hurt by other people, mentally and sometimes physically and even at 45, I feel little pings of vulnerability creep up to the surface from time to time.  I am so done with those feelings.  I have paid them their due and I was ready to move on.  I wanted to feel tough and strong.   I wanted to feel powerful.

So now I knew who I wanted to be and the kind of life I wanted.

Now I had my map.

I decided to live my life with that map as my guide and try not make any choices –  big or small  – that I didn’t feel that the person I wanted to be would make.


I decided to go out and try to find clothes that I could imagine somebody like the “real me” would wear.

I remember one day I was out shopping with my daughter and I was at a store and I tried on a really nice outfit.  It was a  pair of pants and a button down shirt  with a blazer.  It was completely different from anything I had worn before.   As I was standing in the dressing room trying it on, I started feeling different immediately.  The clothes just felt right on me.  They felt good.    I looked in the mirror, and I looked great in it and I felt AMAZING.  I felt confident, strong.  I felt like a grown up.   I was in my 40’s but that was the first time I ever felt like a woman.

My daughter said “Oh mom that looks so good on you.”  and I had to agree.

“But where would I wear it?” I said to her.  “I don’t ever go anywhere.   I have no reason to wear an outfit like this.”

I felt like a big faker, as if I didn’t “belong” in clothes like that.  I didn’t like that feeling at all and it was really putting a damper on my feelings of confidence and power.

“But you love it so much, and look  how nice you look.”, she said.   “Who cares where you wear it?   Wear it around the house.   You are writing your life story mom.  How do you want to be dressed in it?”

(She used my favorite analogy to hit a point home.  Yes.  She is that good.)

“Ok.”  I said.  “I will get it“.

I bought that outfit and a few other things  and as crazy as it sounds,  that day was a real turning point in my life.



Once I had those clothes and wore them nearly every day,  they  made me feel so good that I went back every few weeks or so and picked up another shirt or another blazer or another pair of pants.   Over time, as I could afford to, I completely changed my wardrobe and filled it with only grown up clothes that flattered my particular body shape.   They aren’t the fanciest clothes around, but they are nice….classy.  I felt like a real life episode of “What Not to Wear”.  Stacy and Clinton would have been proud of me.

Transforming my outside, transformed my inside because as I spent time dressing like that woman I wanted to be, I started feeling  like that woman I wanted to be.   Of course,  I am always evolving and my style has changed a few times since then.   As time passed, I grew into my confidence and it became more important to me to feel calm and relaxed than powerful, so I evolved into more of a boho casual style.  But at that time, I was loving the new “grown-up” me and I love that as I transition into the different phases of personal growth in my life, I have always managed to keep my outside consistently representing what is going on inside.

Don’t be afraid to experiment and try new things with your wardrobe and accessories.  You genuinely don’t know what is going to work or how new things will make you feel until you try them out.


Another huge plus of changing my style and looking “nice” all of the time was that I now wanted to go and do things in my new clothes.

I did my usual routine of wake up, work out, get dressed –  and now I actually felt like leaving the house after all that.  It’s funny how that works, you know?  When you look your best, and feel confident, you actually want to be around other people and do new things.

Getting myself out of the house has been amazing.  I take my kids around and we go to the park, we go to the book store, we go visit people.  We don’t just sit home and watch Netflix all day anymore.

Okay some days we do….

But when we do, I look nice doing it.  I don’t look like the babysitter anymore.   I look like somebody’s “mother”.   In a good way!  I like that feeling, and I think my kids like it too.  They seem a bit confused as to why I don’t look like a slob all day long anymore,  but overall I think they are happy with it.


Once I got the “outside” of myself figured out, I decided to turn my focus inward again.

I loved the fact that my wardrobe made me feel confident.  But I wanted to back that up with something solid.  I didn’t want to just feel powerful and look powerful.  I wanted to BE powerful.   But I had spent my entire life feeling small, afraid, nervous, trying to please everybody around me.  How does a 45-year-old mom of 5 find a way to  go from that  to feeling powerful?

By signing  up for Tae Kwon Do.

Yes,  for one hour a night, two nights a week,   my five kids and I take a Tae Kwon Do class and it is probably one of the greatest decisions I have ever made.

Yes, I had to sign them up too.   I don’t want to hog all the empowerment for myself.  But my instructor says I am not allowed to talk to them for the entire class.  And if they come up to me whining, they have to do push ups.  It’s amazing.  I get to learn self-confidence and pretend my kids aren’t mine for a whole hour.   Win/wins like this don’t come around very often, readers.

All 6 of us agree that there is nothing like the feeling of power you feel when you learn a new kick or form, or when you break a board or surprise yourself with your endurance after being pushed to your physical limit.  It is amazing and we never leave class without feeling great about ourselves.   To anybody who is looking for a way to build themselves up and feel strong, confident, and yes, powerful, I highly recommend signing up for Tae Kwon Do.  Even if you are the only adult in the class, as I am,  it is so much fun and so good for your spirit.

So where am I now in this great journey of life?

I am definitely not completely “there” yet,  whatever that means.    My desk is still a mess and I am definitely still not organized.     My social game is still not the greatest.   I mis-speak and words still come flying out of my mouth that make me immediately go “Oh man, why did I say that??”    I still struggle to meet new people.   But you know what?  I will get there.  I will get there for all of it when it’s time for me to get there.   Everything in my life has sort of fallen into place over the past few years as I have stayed true to my map and just followed the natural progression of the path that I am on.   I am going to stay on it and I am really excited to see where I am a year from now and then five and ten years from now.

I still may not have the “perfect” life,  but I have a great life and SO much to be thankful for.   The feelings of homesickness for another life have really lessened over the years as I focus on making my “home” inside me, instead of outside.

anxiety change your life


So what is the point of this post?

It’s to let you know that your life is yours for the making.  

With a few exceptions of course, you can create whatever reality you want for yourself.

All you have to do is decide who you want to be.

Once you decide who you want to be, you simply turn that into who you are.

Think of yourself as an ever-evolving project.  That is the attitude that keeps me going every day.   I will keep evolving and becoming the person I want to be until the day I die.   And after I take my last breath and have reached “The End”,   it is my hope that I will have left behind a great story with a strong and inspiring main character.    That is what I consider to be the purpose of my life other than raising my children and writing about anxiety.

Spend some time in the “float zone” if you aren’t feeling terribly inspired right now and the idea of trying to figure out who you are seems just a bit too overwhelming.

Don’t underestimate the float zone.

It may feel like nothing is going on there,  but trust me,  your subconscious is taking notes.  Just let it do its thing while you hang loose for a while.    In the meantime,  try different styles of clothes and hair until you find one that makes you feel confident and great about yourself and fits in with the new image you see of your future self.   Or if that isn’t your thing,   try some new hobbies,  change up your routine, go to new places, read biographies and try new things in an attempt to find what feels like a good fit for you.  You will know when you find something that rings true to the person you want to be.   It will feel good.  It will feel right.

Always remember that you are the author of the story of your life.

You are the main character of the book, the star of the show, and you have the power to make that character look, sound, and be whomever you want him or her to be.

Are their personality traits you admire in others?   Why can’t they be yours?  Is there a job or education that you wish you could have?  Then become a person who is working toward getting that job or education.   Do you want to feel more strong and confident?   Do your best to behave as if you are already strong and confident and let your brain and mind catch up when they are ready.   If these women can change their life in their later years, then you can change your life at any age! 

I am not saying you will be able to snap your fingers and change who you are.   But
Anxiety Change Your Lifealway aspire to become  that person.  Put yourself in the mindset of that person. Use affirmations to guide you.   Go to places where people like the new “you” go.  Find your tribe.   Get help from a counselor or support group if you need extra guidance.   Becoming who you want to be is an evolutionary process and every step is important and will help guide you on to the next step.

There may be things you strive for that just don’t seem possible no matter how hard you try.  If it just isn’t possible, maybe that is a sign from your destiny that you are on the wrong path.

Write yourself a different path!

Every great story has a plot twist or two….and you can write in and write out other characters into your story as you see fit.   That is a lot of power you have there!

Remember – you didn’t come with a rule book, instruction manual or a contract.   Who you are is whomever you want to be and whatever feels good and right to you.


It’s your story.  You hold the pen.


Follow me on Facebook for more inspiration to gain control of your anxiety and become your best self.

Anxiety Change Your Life





AnnaLisa Scott


9 thoughts on “You Hold The Pen

  1. Aquileana

    “However, I don’t believe the universe or God makes mistakes, so I have decided I must be here for a reason”…

    I feel the same way… However, things in Life can get complex… I have been losing things, people lately… I won´t give details because I really don´t think it is worth it to do a personal account, twisting somehow the idea of your post…. I feel that sometimes we just to take a deep breath and start over… Try to fill the gaps. But it is not easy. Although, I tend to act very mechanically. I often figure out how to do it. But those cycles of “renewal” can be exhausting for most of us, I´d say… Sending much love. Thank you for this post. It truly helped me 😀

  2. Jacqui Murray

    I can relate to so much of what you say. I don’t know much about achieving goals (I pretty much missed all of mine) but I am at a point where I’m satisfied, at peace. And wasn’t that the overarching goal all along?

  3. Aaron J Kelley

    I was reading a post from Ramit Sethi yesterday about 1,000 True fans and after reading this post, I’ve realized that I’m one of your true fans. I read everything you write and I love it!

    This post is just another of my many favorites and as always right on time.

    I’ve been working on myself for a while now and I’m getting better. I have a ways to go but I’m getting there and I’m excited about my future. I still have to work on the confidence, self love, and social skills, but I do know what kind of story I want to leave behind when I’m gone and that’s what drives me.

    I drives me to talk when I’m feeling anxious. It drives me to leave comments on wonderful posts like this and share my thoughts and feelings. It drives me to step outside of my comfort zone. It helps me remember that…for a large portion of my life, I do hold the pen. I get to make decisions. I get to choose who I want to be and how I want to be.

    For so long I used to think I was who I was and didn’t really have a choice, but that’s not true of any of us. Sure some things are set in stone by God, but we also have our own free will to do and say and act as we desire.

    We truly do hold the pen.

    Again, thank you for sharing this with us. Also… I was going to sign up for a Toastmasters group… but maybe I need to think about Tae Kwon Do too!

    1. AnnaLisa Scott Post author

      Thanks so much Aaron. I wish you could sign up for my TKD class with me. We would have so much fun. 😉 Toastmasters is great as well though. If you sign up, you have to write a post and let me know how it goes. You are an amazing person just as you are…so special…but I hope someday you find that you have written yourself some great new chapters with a few twists and turns!

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