I shared in last week’s blog that I’ve been dealing with anxiety for a few years now. I’ve been on a persistent pursuit to figure out how I can best prevent, assess and overcome it. Through counseling and many trials and errors, I am finally feeling somewhat in control of my spiraling mind. I am very aware that everyone’s struggles are different and what works for me may not work for the next person. I am hoping, however, that this little bit of insight into my journey may help in some way.
If you haven’t tried counseling before, I highly encourage you to give that a shot. Talk therapy with someone who is unbiased can be very helpful. They may also have other suggestions of things you can try, such as the neurofeedback I mentioned previously.
My go-to’s when my anxiety comes on strong and quick and I need instant relief:
- Go for a walk or doing something active in the fresh air
- Talk with my close family or friends
- 5 Senses Meditation (see Facebook post)
- “Brain Dump” journaling (no prompt or thinking, just writing whatever comes up)
- Focus on taking full, deep belly breaths
Sometimes doing just one of these things will do the trick while other times I need to do a combination of them.
When my anxiety has been lingering for an extended period of time, these are the things I have found helpful:
- Create routine from day to day – consistency is key!
- Read something inspiring, uplifting or educational
- Check in throughout each day – how am I feeling? What things are adding to my anxiety? What thoughts are circulating through my mind?
- If I can, I will write these answers in my journal, type these answers into the notes on my phone or record an audio clip. But sometimes, I just answer them in my mind.
- SLOW DOWN, say NO!
- I am a go, go, go person and will go until I burn myself out. My anxiety typically gets worse when I am exhausted. I have found it is important to evaluate who/what adds to my life in a positive way and who/what depletes me of energy. This allows me to more easily set boundaries.
- Schedule a counseling appointment
- I did weekly, bi-weekly and then monthly sessions a few years ago. I’m at a place now that I can often recognize and manage my anxiety on my own. When things feel like too much for me to handle alone, I will reach out to my counselor for a session. She knows me and understands me better than anyone and has a way of untangling my thoughts.
I hope this helps! What have you found that helps you?