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5 Ways to Ease Anxiety
(When Everything is Going Wrong)
What is Anxiety?
It’s definitely something that isn’t talked about frequently, I know that for me personally it comes with this stigma of not being able to handle life and being weak. Which I know I am definitely not. Going through a pregnancy when your husband is deployed at sea required a lot of strength, especially when I felt like everything was going and I had no one to talk about it with.
Anxiety can appear in a number of ways, for some people its the fear that something will go wrong, concerns that for others may seem “silly”. But it’s a real and oftentimes overwhelming feeling of apprehension.
Since having my daughter I’ve definitely noticed an increase in my anxiety, sure a lot of it is first time parenting jitters, but a some it is the added stress of caring for another little person who’s life depends on me keeping it together.
Anxiety can be treated with medication, in fact I took some for a while but found that my body reacted negatively to them. Attempting to find a mind-body approach was important to me. I’ve used each of these tactics when I’m feeling overly anxious or can feel that my anxiety is getting the best of me and hope that they help you too.
Can you visualize your fears? Try to put your stress into perspective, are things really as bad as they seem? Anytime I have an almost nonsensical thought I challenge the thought and visualize the outcome if something goes wrong. Many times this works when I’m having a “what if” moment. “What if my husband forgets to feed the baby” “What if one day I forget the baby in car”. How unrealistic is it that my baby’s father would “forget” to feed her. Unrealistic, he wouldn’t. I have locked my baby in the car but I didn’t forget her, she’s my daughter and always on my mind.
Sometimes you just have to admit to yourself that you cannot handle everything, and guess what. That is OK! I work in a busy clinic and at times it can get extremely hectic and I feel as though I’m being pulled in ten different directions, but accepting that I can only handle so much at once and being able to vocalize that has helped control some of that anxiety at work.
Talk to someone
This doesn’t even have to be a friend. I found solace in a counselor who helped me lay out everything and put it into perspective. It felt good to have someone who I didn’t know from Adam just listen to my worry’s and thoughts. If cost is a concern many companies offer an Employee Assistance Program that offers free professional, confidential counseling help for personal problems at no cost to you. Sometimes these services are even available to your spouse or children, ask your HR representative!
If meditation seems silly or you don’t know how to do it download the app Headspace on your phone. This app offers a free 10 day beginner’s course that guide’s you through a short meditation every day. The meditation guide’s are short enough that you can do them even during your breaks at work. If, like me, a majority of your anxiety comes from work, being able to clear your mind and reboot is essential.
I’ve found that running has been a great way to clear my mind from whatever is causing me stress. After my run I feel a lot less anxious and can really begin to visualize a positive outcome of whatever my worry was. If running is too boring or doesn’t take your mind off of your anxiety try to incorporate cardio in your workouts. HIIT workouts are great because they include lots of heart pumping goodness and will allow you to focus on your workout and keep your anxiety at bay.
Dealing with anxiety is something that I struggle with but using these tactics has drastically helped reduce the daily anxiety I have. As I mentioned I have tried medications for it before but my body rejected them, I felt sick to my stomach and downright horrible. Being able to use these mind-body approaches has allowed me to live a happier and more fulfilling life. Any other ways to ease anxiety? Let me know!