I often hear friends comment that they can’t deal. Even in jest or as hyperbole, “I can’t deal” is a powerful statement. What you say to yourself and others influences your actions and your thinking, it is all cyclical. So let’s learn some coping skills for those times in life that overwhelm and engulf us with fear.
Anxiety affects millions of people worldwide. At times, we all feel anxious, but it is how we deal with that fear that promotes survival and strengthens our minds, bodies, and character.
Symptoms vary, and some people only experience them now and then.
Some symptoms of anxiety include:
- Excessive worry
- Difficulty concentrating
- Chest tightness, heart palpitations
Acknowledge Your Anxiety
The first step to dealing with any issue is acceptance. Notice your stress, pinpoint your triggers, then claim your fears. Grab your journal and write down, “I am anxious because.” By pinpointing the why, you can start to check off ways to address and calm yourself.
Press Pause and Breathe
Take two minutes to ground yourself while doing a quick 1-2-3 breathing exercise.
- Sit down and push your hands into the floor.
- Then, inhale deeply, exhale fully while focusing on your body.
- Now drop your shoulders as you inhale again. Hold that breath for 2 seconds. Exhale completely.
- Place your hands to your heart. Inhale, while noticing your heartbeat. Hold this breath for the count of 3, then slowly exhale as you come back to yourself.
Visualize Your Zen
Need a little extra to calm yourself? As you come back to yourself, repeat the 1-2-3 Breathe work. This time, visualize yourself calm. Imagine yourself in an environment that soothes you—the silence of a lush green forest or the sounds of the ocean’s waves, for example.
Now feel yourself in your imagined surroundings. Feel the sun, the sand underfoot, and the cool mist from the ocean breeze. Acknowledge the zen and the emotions this visualization has helped you conjure. Namaste.
Challenge Your Thoughts
Hone in on thoughts that induce your fears and stress. Then, play with those thoughts. Are they reasonable? Are they irrational? How can you calmly address these fears to move forward?
Work It Off
A quick work out is a great way to release anxiety. Take a brisk walk, run, ride your bike while practicing social distancing. Are you sheltering in place? Put on a playlist and dance it out. We can also thank Transformational Wellness Coach and Pilates Guru, Elvy for demonstrating the mermaid stretch; a perfect tension release. Follow her on IG for more of her yummy stretches. You can also sign-up for her comprehensive ebook here.
Listen to Music
Use music to dance/workout but also soothe. Listen to music and escape into memories or general calming melodies. So, just as you might have playlists while cooking and cleaning, create a list to soothe yourself.
Eat a Light Snack
Sometimes, our bodies need nourishment to balance our brains and thoughts. Enjoy a healthy snack to replenish yourself. Here are some ideas you can pre-make, grab, and go sit by the window to enjoy.