How Hockey Saved Me From My Anxiety



A little over 2 years ago, my life was changing, and in my mind, it was falling apart. I was graduating college, I didn’t have a job and I was starting to realize that things I once loved, were starting to become the reason for my anxiety attacks. Overall, I felt lost.

Then, one day, my brother and I decided to get my dad hockey tickets for his birthday. And then I realized, I didn’t want to look stupid at the game, so I decided to brush up on my hockey knowledge. Which meant, that I had to pick a team to pay attention to, and I decided that team would be the Pittsburgh Penguins.

I was always a fan of Sidney Crosby. In 2009, I stayed up and watched him win his first Stanley Cup. And then in 2010, I watched him beat my own country at the Olympics, but his goal still brought a smile to my face. After that, I kind of lost touch with Crosby and hockey in general, to focus on a band, who at the time, made my life feel good. So in 2014, when I decided that I wanted to reacquaint myself with hockey, I chose to follow Sidney Crosby’s team, and a day hasn’t gone by where I haven’t been thankful for that decision.

At a time where I felt like my life was falling apart, Crosby and the Penguins gave me something to focus on for 3 hours every other day. They allowed me to escape my head, escape reality really, and just smile& scream all at once. I was happy for those three hours, and I forgot that my anxiety existed.

Fast forward to today, hockey is now a bigger part of my life than I ever felt possible. I watch every single Penguins game because it still helps my anxiety stay away for a few hours. Currently, I feel like I am in a funk of anxiety, and maybe a little bit of depression. I am stuck in this cycle of not wanting to do anything but lay in bed, but then feeling extremely guilty for not doing anything. The only time where I feel like myself is when I am watching a hockey game. I love watching my team, and I love having a hockey workout. Those 3 hours allow me escapse my anxiety and the guilt of feeling lazy. I am able to workout, yell at the TV and just have fun.

Hockey has become my favorite thing in my life, which is a little silly when you think about it, but I don’t really care. I feel content and I feel happy. So I do not feel guilty when I choose to stay in for a game because it’s probably the only time of the day where I am not focusing on my anxiety. There aren’t enough words to describe how thankful I am that hockey returned to my life.

My advice to those who like me, who struggle on a daily basis, sit down and think about when you are the most at ease, and do more of that. Whether it’s a sport like me, or a hobbie, whatever you choose, make sure you don’t let anyone make you feel bad for doing what makes you happy. It’s tough to be happy when you’re always anxious, so we should take advantage of it when we can.

Until next time!


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