6 Ways to Deal with Anxiety
A Simple Guide to Take Charge of Your Emotions
Anxiety is a normal human response to stressors like new situations and challenging tasks. Everyone experiences anxiety at some point in their lives. However, when these feelings begin to interfere with your everyday activities and remain present for extended periods of time—or appear suddenly during times of peace—it’s an indication that something needs to change.
Decide what you can control and what you can’t
Anxiety often arises when we feel out of control in our lives. So the first step in dealing with anxiety is understanding what we can control and can’t. We can control our thoughts and behaviors, but not other people’s actions. We can maintain our health and habits, not the outcomes of uncertain situations. Accepting that we have limited control over many aspects of our lives can help us let go of worrying about things we cannot change and redirect our energy toward what we can do.
Remember that anxiety doesn’t last forever
Anxiety can feel like a never-ending battle. But it’s a temporary emotion that will come and go. Anxiety is a prediction that you’re going to have a bad experience in the future. So if you can remind yourself that it won’t last forever, you can also remind yourself that you’ll get through it. Anxiety is an emotion, and all feelings are temporary.
Don’t fight your feelings
Fighting your feelings or trying to repress your anxiety may be a good short-term solution, but it won’t help you in the long run. Instead, try to accept your feelings and let them run their course. If you worry about something and feel anxious, try some of these strategies to help you let go of the feelings.
- Practice mindfulness. When you’re anxious, you lose your thoughts and forget to pay attention to what’s happening around you. Practicing mindfulness can help you break out of this pattern and engage with the present moment.
- Engage in a creative activity.
- Distract yourself. Instead of focusing on your anxiety, try to engage in a distracting activity, like reading a book, going for a walk, or watching a movie.
- Try breathing exercises.
Exercise can help lower anxiety by calming the nervous system, increasing endorphins and serotonin, and improving sleep quality. If you’re not exercising regularly, you can do plenty of low-impact activities that could have a similar effect.
- Find an activity you enjoy – walking, biking, dancing, or gardening. The key to making these activities beneficial is to do them regularly.
- Set small, achievable goals. It’s easy to get overwhelmed by exercising for a long time or doing a strenuous activity. Instead, aim for short, regular workouts and make them fun.
- Make changes to your daily routine. If you have anxiety, it’s easy to fall into a pattern of staying at home, only doing things you’re comfortable with, and avoiding new challenges. But every day, make an effort to do something new.
Develop a distraction habit
Instead of thinking about your current stresses, try to think of something positive and engaging. This might involve going to your happy place, thinking about the people you love, or engaging in a hobby you enjoy. Find something that brings you joy and keeps your mind off the things you’re anxious about. You could walk, spend time with friends, or read a book.
Practice breathing exercises
There are many different ways to practice breathing exercises. The simplest way is to take slow, deep breaths. A more advanced way is to try a mindfulness meditation, where you focus on the sensation of your breath entering and leaving your body. If you’re feeling anxious, try one of these breathing exercises. Take a few minutes to sit in a quiet spot, close your eyes, and focus on breathing. Alternatively, you can try mindful exercise, like yoga or walking, to help you focus on your breathing.
Anxiety is a common human emotion that can be difficult to manage. However, with the right approach and some effort, you can still live your best life even when you’re feeling anxious. Remember that anxiety doesn’t last forever, you don’t have to fight your feelings, and you can use breathing exercises to help manage your anxiety. Using these strategies, you can overcome anxiety and live a happier, more fulfilling life.
The author of this article is a therapist from the Sensera app. Sensera is a daily 10-minute self-therapy app. It’ll help you to cope with various mental problems (anxiety, self-esteem, relationship issues). Feel better with CBT audio sessions and exercises. Download now to become happier!