5 Ways to Cope With Anxiety
Are you feeling more anxious than usual? Many people are. There are a lot of reasons why you may be feeling more anxious. In counseling, we can spend time understanding the causes, but more importantly, we need to work on what to do about the anxiety.
If you think about it this way, if you were shot by an arrow, would you waste time trying to figure where the arrow came from, while you bleed to death or would you focus on what to do about getting the arrow out? Anxiety is a normal emotion that keeps us alive and out of danger. But when you are feeling anxious all the time, it is no longer protective and helpful. It makes life harder and can be exhausting.
So here are some ways to cope with your anxiety.
1. Change Negative Self Talk
Negative self talk not only increases anxiety but also affects self confidence and mood. Try to pay attention to what you say to yourself. Improving your self talk will help you feel less negative and less anxious.
2. Change Your Focus
When we are anxious, we tend to focus on what we can’t do. It is important to acknowledge what you can’t do, but even more important to focus on what you can do. Focusing on what you can’t do increases your anxiety levels. When having a hard time and feeling anxious, ask yourself, What can I do to help myself now? That simple question changes your focus from what you can’t do to what you can do. You will feel more in control, and less anxious.
3. Use Calming Techniques
Using calming techniques everyday, even when you are not feeling anxious will help you when you are. Breathing techniques, such as Box Breathing, help calm the body, which calms the mind. Using imagery to help yourself relax is also another way to calm anxiety. There are self hypnosis apps that teach you to use imagery to conquer anxiety.
Imagine your favorite place (the beach, the woods, etc.), with as much detail as possible-the sights, smells, and sounds (for example, if it’s the beach, the sound of the waves, gulls calling, smells of salt in the air, warm sunshine). When you practice this you will be able to use the image to calm yourself and reduce your anxiety.
4. Find Balance
Not getting enough rest, not eating well, and not exercising lead to physical and emotional imbalances that will negatively impact your coping skills. Getting yourself into a routine, where you get better sleep, eat a little better, and get some exercise–will help reduce your anxiety.
5. Try to Stay in the Present Moment
If you are anxious, it is very likely there is something that has triggered your anxiety. It could be something that happened recently or a long time ago. You may find that you spend a lot of time either worrying about the future or thinking about the past.
We ruin the present moment and generate a lot of anxiety by allowing fears from the past and worries about the future upset us. Moving meditations like yoga, tai chi, walking meditation, all help to ground us in the present moment. You can also just bring your attention to the here and now by focusing on your breathing–being mindful.
We Can Help With Anxiety
If your anxiety is interfering with your daily life or you feel yourself worrying or anxious all the time, then it may be time to speak to a professional. Counseling can help you identify the coping strategies that will work best for you. You deserve to feel better, and there is no time like the present to start.
Feel free to give us a call or send us an email to learn how we may work with you to help you overcome your anxiety (908-857-4422 or firstname.lastname@example.org). We will do our very best to help you feel better.
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For more about how we treat anxiety go here: Anxiety and Panic Attacks
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To read Dr. Marion’s blog on Anxiety and Panic attacks, go here: Dr. Marion