Anxiety is real and ugly. It comes at the most unpredictable times. It’s so hard to explain yet so easy to become consumed by. Anxiety is different for everyone some people suffer from anxiety for years before they realize exactly what it is.
Check out this post on 9 Things You Didn’t Know Anxiety Could Look Like
I’ve always been an anxious kid. I deemed myself a “scaredy cat” of the group. It wasn’t that I was scared per say more like I over thought every single thing about every action and if one of the results could end in something bad; I wanted no part in it.
What can you do to help it?
As I’ve grown older and had a child my anxiety has only grown stronger. I went through a bad time of health anxiety after my son was born. I would find myself researching diseases for hours and worrying constantly that he had them; all over a couple fevers, I would truly convince myself he had cancer. It was scary. It feels so real to you and it takes a lot to step back and realize that you have to chill.
If you’ve never suffered from health anxiety you probably can’t relate to that but it’s a real and scary feeling. You also feel a lot of guilt, at least I did. Here I was with a perfectly healthy baby stressing over something that mama’s all over the world were LEGIT dealing with.
I had to stop. I did not need to spend my life worrying and thinking something terrible was on the verge of happening. Anxiety will always be with me but I’ve managed it by adding some routines into my daily life.
I’ll share them with you and maybe they can help you out some!
1. Daily Affirmations
I made a whole blog post about them here. Included a free printable to track your daily affirmations.
These help calm me so much. I am a huge believer of you are what you think. If you tell your self-positive things all day, you’ll slowly start thinking positively. Being mindful can do wonders for your anxiety. It helps you control what thoughts are running through your head.
Try it for a week and see how much relief you feel.
I love yoga but when I first started out I didn’t much about it. If you are a yogi and can’t do poses just do some plain ole stretching. Whatever feels good, I do a mixture of yoga poses and stretches I learned in middle school PE.
I’ve found that living constantly stressed and overwhelmed can cause tension in your body. My shoulders/ neck have ALWAYS been tense. I always feel it.
Stretching had helped relieve some of that tension which also lowers my stress levels. You can also clear your mind or say your daily affirmations while doing this. Even if you’re super busy, find time to just stretch for 5 minutes.
You can do stretches in your office chair. I used to do stretches in our work bathroom every time I went. It really made my dad so much better.
3. Artistic Outlets
If you can find anything with your hands that you even slightly enjoy doing- even if you’re not the best at it, then do it. I love adult coloring books, hand lettering, painting, and drawing. Keeping your hands busy keeps your mind busy. I find that if I feel like I’m getting really worked up- 30 minutes of coloring is extremely therapeutic to me and brings me back to an okay level. You could sew, make a blanket, cook, anything that keeps your hands and mind busy and shows a finished product.
It’s also when I get most of my inspiration. I go from racing intrusive thoughts to thinking of all the wonderful things I could create. It really is magical.
Here are some of my favorite adult coloring books.
“You’re TOTALLY Badass: A totally inappropriate self- affirming adult coloring book.”-https://amzn.to/2GhNNo7
“Maybe Swearing Will Help”- https://amzn.to/2Gha5pX
4. Get outside
I know, I know. I hate seeing those people that are like “oh you’re depressed, well go for a walk every day and it will cure it.” No, none of these ‘CURE’ anything. They help cope though which makes the days a whole lot easier.
Going on a walk, sitting and staring at a beautiful view, going and just taking a couple deep breathes while staring at the sky. It’s so refreshing. I didn’t always realize this. I knew going outside made me feel better but I didn’t exactly understand why.
When It Clicked For Me
I can remember working at a hotel by myself overnight. My anxiety would get really bad out of nowhere and I’d find myself on the verge of tears. I’d strap the mobile phone on me, put the “I’ll be back in a moment” sign up and make a quick walk around the hotel.
Every time I got back I felt slightly better and could make it through the next hours. Some nights I’d take about 5 walks a night. I remember at the moment feeling almost crazy, I didn’t understand it.
Looking back I realize; seeing those cars drive by, seeing all the people walking into the mall, seeing everyone traveling down the interstate, seeing the stars, feeling the wind, it makes you realize how small things are. How many people are out here living and surviving. No matter how bad things are getting, life is still moving and it’s going to be okay.
Try it out. It takes practice. Next time you’re feeling anxious or really down go sit outside. Pay attention to everything. Every noise, every movement. Watch the birds fly. Watch the cars drive by and think about those people. Where are they going and what kind of day are they having?
Not only does this shut your own mind down from intrusive thoughts but it puts you of your mind and suddenly you feel relief.
Remember, there is no magical way to “fix” your anxiety.
You can make daily steps to manage it better. You got this! 🙂
Comment below and share your favorite calm down trick!