How to deal with Anxiety + Tips that you can use at home to help!

How to deal with Anxiety + Tips that you can use at home to help!

So many of us have experienced a form of mild or extreme anxiety at one point or another.  It starts as a pang in your stomach and then moves into a more prominent part of our thoughts when we begin to think about something that we fear may or may not happen in our not so distant future.  Anxiety is real and it is not something to be ashamed of or ignored.  The good news is that there are a few things you can do at home to help.

Whether you experience a mild form of anxiety before a big event, a new job interview, facing your fear of heights, a performance on stage or even asking for a promotion at work, it can feel very overwhelming.  We all experience nervousness and butterflies.  Remember, butterflies are good, they remind you that you are about to do something brave and new.

Personal Experience

I have personally experienced uncomfortable levels of anxiety when faced with my fear of heights.  During a long trek in the mountains, I learned that my own build-up to a scary activity started well before I even began doing the thing that scared me.  I was so worked up in my own head that I created my own mini panic session right there where I was standing.  When I look back and realize that anxiety is always about fear of something that may happen in the future, I understood that I was making my situation so much worse all on my own.  Now that I see the situation more clearly, I believe I have conquered that fear for good and am so relieved.

I recently interviewed a few therapists on the subject and found some very interesting statistics that made me realize that anxiety is a fairly common emotion.

An estimated 19.1% of U.S. adults had an anxiety disorder in the past year. *

An estimated 31.1% of U.S. adults experience an anxiety disorder at some time in their lives. *

Helpful Tips

Here are some helpful tips that you can use at home:

    1. Sleep: A good night’s sleep is so important to stave off the emotional swings
    2. Back off Caffeine and Alcohol: These can push you to highs and lows that may trigger or exaggerate feelings
    3. Guard your thoughts from negative thinking and negative input
    4. Take a walk or exercise to clear your head and get your body moving
    5. Take deep breaths and turn on calming music or a guided meditation for 15 minutes
    6. Talk it out: Call a friend, a relative or someone that you can share your feelings with. Just knowing that you are not alone can help
    7. Make a gratitude list: List 5 things you are grateful for right now every time you begin feeling overwhelmed
    8. Know you are not alone and there is help waiting for you to ask for it
    9. Do something kind for someone else: Even if it’s just a smile or holding a door open for someone, do something that is for someone else to shift your focus
    10. Breathe: Take deep breaths and count backward from 20 to 1 when you start to feel your heart racing
    11. Turn off your negative imagination: Focus on the good outcome that you desire

We all experience some form of anxiety, no judgment, it’s a fact.  There is good news however, this does not have to be your story forever. There are so many resources out there.  Resources that can be accessed online and, in your city, offering immediate help and relief for all levels of anxiety.  Sometimes a phone call to a professional in this field can make all the difference in changing your course and can lead to a new pathway to emotional freedom.

*Source:  National Institute of Mental Health

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