It’s safe to say every single one of us will experience some form of anxiety during the course of our lives. After all, it’s a normal human emotion which helps us to identify potential dangers.
However, for many people, anxiety manifests itself as a much more detrimental mental condition which can lead to serious issues in an individual’s life.
In more serious cases, anxiety can even lead to panic attacks which may entail heart palpitations, loss of breath, sweating and other symptoms.
Regardless of the severity, when experiencing anxiety, it is important to remain calm and try to detach yourself from these feelings.
Here are our top 6 tips for dealing with episodes of anxiety:
This may sound unsettling but acceptance needs to be the first action you take when tackling your fears. Being at peace with anxious feelings and tendencies is crucial and the bottom line is to stop fighting against them.
2. Breathing and Grounding
Breathing is a fundamental aspect of life, yet its benefits are often greatly overlooked.
During episodes of anxiety when the mind is overworking, the body can often become tense and you may stop breathing in a regular rhythm or frequency. This can be counteracted by focusing on relaxing your muscles and restoring breathing patterns to become grounded.
When you have time to yourself, use deep, heavy breathing exercises to calm your mind and prepare for future events. Devoting even short periods of time to meditation and contemplative thinking will help enforce positive ideas and increase your confidence.
3. Identify Situations which Initiate Anxiety
Learning to identify these situations as well as exploring the reasons for why they make you feel this way may seem scary at first but, ultimately, it is an important step in improving your wellbeing.
Being able to rationalise your fears puts you in control: you may even find keeping a journal will help to further solidify your stressors.
For instance, if you feel worried or paranoid in social situations, why is this? Do you feel as if people are judging you or you are always being looked at? Finding your honest reasoning can be extremely liberating and you will soon discover your fears are nothing more than negative, irrational thoughts.
4. Place yourself in distressing situations
Again, this may seem counterintuitive, but isolating yourself will only elevate your fears when you have no choice but to place yourself in these situations.
If speaking to new people or walking through crowded areas brings upon anxiety, make this a regular part of your day. Forcing yourself to be amongst your fears will be daunting at first but, with a positive mind, acceptance of your fears and confidence, you can start to overcome your thoughts.
5. Focus on yourself
Do you ever think you’re the only person who becomes as anxious and paranoid as you do? Do you ever feel totally insecure and useless? Don’t worry, you’re not.
There are many people who share the same thoughts and tendencies as you and comparing yourself to others who you deem to be more confident or simply “better” is self-destructive and not beneficial.
The final and possibly most advantageous piece of advice is to work towards detachment. Being able to fully accept, rationalise and immerse yourself in your fears is impressive, but without removing yourself from them and progressing, they will still remain a part of your life.
Conquering your fears can seem like an overwhelming task and, for people who have suffered with anxiety for extended periods of time; it can often seem like a fundamental part of their identity.
Understand that thoughts can change and so can your attitudes towards life. As with all good things, none of this will happen overnight but, with persistence and a grounded mentality, you can regain your confidence, remove insecurity and paranoia and live a life of happiness and vitality.
Encompass Dorset provide care and support services to people with mental illnesses and learning difficulties.
To learn how we can help you or a loved one, click here.