As someone who struggles with anxiety daily, I’m writing this to those of you that do as well. Managing anxiety is a daily, intentional and difficult process. I don’t have all the answers, nor do I pretend to, but in this blog post I will go over some of the processes that help me when I am especially anxious.
One of the hardest things for me personally to do is to stay in the moment. I often find myself stressing out about the future, whether that be something for the next day, next month, or even years from now. This robs me of the joy that is in the present moment, as I worry about things that haven’t even happened yet. A quote I found recently is-
“Happiness is not something you postpone for the future; it is something you design for the present.” - Jim Rohn
I love that quote. Anxiety can easily rob us of moments of joy in the present while worrying about the future, so it is important to be intentional with our thoughts. Tomorrow might be a hard day, whether that is career based, relationally based or any number of other things. But when we allow our thoughts to wander to the land of ‘what ifs’, it takes away from the happiness we can find in our current moment. I have been trying to train my mind to focus on the present, and deal with the future as it comes.
Rewarding Small Victories
When we step out of our comfort zone and approach (and deal with) things that make us anxious, even in a small way, this can be a step towards healing and victory over that anxiety.
Have that conversation you have been avoiding, trust yourself that you will make the right decision, be intentional with your time- challenge yourself. By stepping out of our comfort zones and dealing with the root of anxieties, we can prove to ourselves that we *can* get past it.
Whether that is a small or large thing- allow yourself to feel accomplished. Celebrate the victory, be kind to yourself.
Maintain a Healthy Lifestyle
Working out, staying active, and getting outside are all proven to help reduce stress, and manage anxiety. It’s easy for me, and maybe for you as well, to chill on the couch when I get anxious. Sometimes it seems like a lot just to get outside and get some fresh air. But when we push ourselves to accomplish small things like this, it truly does help with the overall anxiety we are facing. I have noticed that I am less likely to get an anxiety attack or panic attack when I have been staying active. This may not be true for everyone- but it has been shown to help!
Talking To Someone
This is the most important point of all. Anxiety does not have to be dealt with alone. It is so important to vocalize your fears and the anxious thoughts you have. Talking to someone, whether a therapist, close friend, or family member can often bring clarity to the situation. I call this ‘getting out of my own head’. When I don’t vocalize what I am feeling, it often builds up and makes the situation worse for me. Talking to someone is one of the best ways to work through our fears, anxieties and worries.
Like I said at the beginning of this post, I don’t have all the answers. But these four points have truly helped me- and I hope that they can be of some help to you as well.