Anxiety is one of the most common mental health conditions across the world.
But, it’s also very manageable.
It’s important to note that anxiety doesn’t typically go away on its own. Many people think they can power their way through it, or ignore their fears and emotions—pushing them down in hopes they’ll go away.
Unfortunately, that often makes things worse.
With the right guidance and treatment, however, you can get better and managing your fears and anxieties on a daily basis. For now, let’s cover a few helpful skills that can get you started, so you can stop letting your fears dictate your life.
Write Down What You’re Thinking
If you’re feeling scared or anxious, one of the best things you can do is to pull out a journal and write down everything you’re feeling.
Whether you’re currently in therapy or not, this is a simple practice you can do each day to manage your fears. By putting things onto paper, they can feel less overwhelming and daunting. Essentially, you’re “working through” those fearful thoughts as you write them, so they don’t have as much of a chance to grow into something worse in your head.
This technique also allows you to question your thought patterns.
As you write things down, you can ask yourself why you’re thinking/feeling a certain way. You might also be able to get a greater understanding of what triggered those thoughts and fears. Understanding your triggers will make them both easier to avoid, and easier to cope with.
Pause and Breathe
Sometimes, moments of fear and anxiety can come on quickly and unexpectedly. It’s easy to feel overwhelmed in those moments, but difficult to focus on just about anything else.
But, you can still breathe, and that’s exactly where your focus should be.
Focused, deep breathing can help you calm down in a matter of minutes. When your mind is anxious, it can cause your body to tense up. You’ll naturally take shorter, shallow breaths. That can cause you to become even more anxious while making your physical symptoms worse.
By taking longer, slower breaths, you’ll calm your body down. In turn, you can calm your mind down, as well.
Pair your intentional breathing with mindfulness to manage your symptoms even faster. Focus on the present moment and how you feel. Take in your surroundings and allow yourself to be fully immersed in the “now”, rather than worrying about the past or future.
Practice a Daily Routine
Routines bring comfort and stability—two things that are needed to combat anxiety on a daily basis.
While everyone’s routine is different, simply having one can make it easier to cope with fearful thoughts when they come. You’ll have something to lean on that you’re in control of, and that can boost your confidence enough to help you fight back against anxious thoughts.
As a bonus, try to include something like meditation or yoga in your daily routine. You can use that time to take your thoughts captive and take away some of the power that fear might have over you.
These tips and techniques are all great ways to manage anxiety on your own each day. But, again, anxiety won’t go away by itself. Getting to the underlying cause(s) and learning more management techniques is important if you truly want to overcome it.
With that in mind, feel free to contact me. Therapy is the best way to get your anxiety under control and eventually take your life back. You don’t have to live in fear forever. Together, we’ll work through where your worries are coming from, and how you can overcome them as you move forward.