If you’re an actual human being, then you have probably experienced anxiety. It may have been on a small scale or it might have been all consuming. Either way, it’s not fun to experience. I didn’t realize anxiety was what I was experiencing until this past year when I was officially told by the doctor. I went through some rough times and did not handle it well. After many months of helping myself and learning as much as I could, I’ve taught myself how to better cope with what I now realize is just a part of who I am. If you can relate to any of that, then this is for you! I’ve compiled a list of ways I’ve found that help with anxiety. Here we go!
Better ways to deal with anxiety than letting it consume you:
- Diet- clean it up. Less processed foods and so many more fruits and vegetables! As one of my friends just reminded me: your gut is your second brain and if it’s feeling good it will send positive feelings towards your brain.
- Exercise– Obviously exercise is known to release endorphins but when you’re doing it, it also gets your mind off your worries. An added bonus is confidence because you’ll be looking good and feeling better about yourself!
- When you are feeling anxiety coming on, think of a time when you felt really great or something really awesome happened and how it made you feel. The key here is bringing back that feeling, not necessarily the thought. So that way you literally changed how you are feeling at that moment. You can take charge of the things happening in your brain and not the other way around. I’ve already been using this frequently since I learned about it.
- Breathing- There are many different techniques out there but for example taking a breath in for 4 seconds and releasing for 6 seconds.
- Knowing that in the past to stay alive as humans our automatic anxious response is negative because in the past we needed this to keep us safe from predators. However, in most cases now, you should not be in fight or flight mode on the daily.
- Sleep- Make it a priority! This sounds so simple but seems to be an issue with quite a lot of people. Get serious about your sleep schedule and know when your body needs rest.
- Mental health days- I’ve started learning my body better and I have sick days so I allow myself to take those for mental health because if I don’t I will make myself physically ill and end up taking them eventually anyway.
- Only put as much on your plate as you can handle, everything else can wait. Gah, this is so huge as a teacher. Your job is never done. There’s always a million things you can think of to do but just know that they will eventually get done and not to overdo it or you WILL burn out. I speak from experience.
- Be present. Stop thinking ahead and really be in the now. YOUR life is happening now. Do not wait for the weekend for it to start, do not wait for your vacation for it to start, do not wait for anything to really be present each day and enjoy it NOW or it will pass you by.
- Journaling- I used to poo-poo this idea. But once I embraced it, holy sh*t I feel so much better. Sometimes it helps me process what I’m feeling and make sense of it and sometimes it’s just to vent when I don’t want to talk to another person about it.
- Listen to an audiobook or podcast – I recently started doing this and it helps calm my anxiety on my way to work. I highly recommend The Anxiety Podcast by Tim JP Collins. I can almost always leave his podcasts and have actionable steps afterward.
- Learn something new– Are you interested in something but have never taken the time to look into it? Do it now! Last April I started teaching myself how to set up and run a blog. Then for my blog, I wanted good quality photos so I have now started teaching myself some photography basics. It feels so good to teach yourself a new skill. Seriously, now I can add blogger and writer to my LinkedIn skills. 🙂 see? Even helps out on your resume.
If this helped you in any way, please let me know in the comments!