Many of us have felt anxious, it’s one of those things we just assume happens to everyone and is part of life. Anxiety is something that has a huge spectrum, from something as small yet troublesome as a quickened pace of breathing and sweaty palms to a crippling feeling of being overwhelmed and helpless. Anxiety can be a huge problem for many of us, whether this is in response to a fear, to a looming deadline, to a strained relationship or just a day at the office. No matter what gives you anxiety, it’s important to find ways to deal with this. Anxiety can lead to insomnia among a host of other health problems so these are our tips when it comes to dealing with anxiety.
This may be the most common, and actually helpful piece of advice when it comes to anxiety. Anxiety makes one feel out of control, like you don’t have a grasp on what is going on around you. By taking control of your breathing, you can start to regain a sense of agency and begin to calm your anxiety. Become aware of your breath and start to take long, slow breaths where you inhale for four counts, hold for six counts and then exhale for six to eight counts. This helps combat the shallow breathing and the rush of adrenaline one often experiences during an anxiety attack.
Sometimes, all you need to do is to distract yourself from the issue at hand. If you’re about to step into an important meeting and are feeling anxious, put on some music and sing along. Perhaps start to focus on an object in front of you. Think about how it’s made, the shape of it and where you bought it. Think about a trip you recently went on or look at photographs on your phone of times where you felt happy and calm. By removing your focus from the problem at hand, you can trick your mind into slowing down and reducing the energy you are putting into your anxiety.
Some of us feel anxious about everything whereas others have specific triggers. Understand where your anxiety stems from and try to become aware of the reaction this causes in your body. Feel the anxiety build up and analyse each and every component. When you feel your heart rate quicken, figure out why this is happening. If your hands start to shake, take a deep breath and try to focus on becoming stable again. Remember that your thoughts are completely in your own control, when you feel anxious, simply bring your mind back to where you want it to be. Don’t begin to feel helpless because this is only one small situation, it’s not written in stone nor is it going to last forever.
However you choose to battle your anxiety, we want to know! Please share your own experience of feeling anxious and how you have managed to overcome this.