Want to know how to conquer your anxiety? Here are some of the best tips that actually work. Forward: these aren’t easy but so worth it!
I’ve been compelled to write about this subject today following my life coaching certification and the emotions it has created in the process. My teacher showed me a vast array of information into the human psyche. I thought I knew it all, but I’ve since come to realise that, actually, I know nothing.
Pondering on anxiety and how we work, I’ve now seen how the very best of us can actually be the very worst off. Why is it that the very leaders of our country succumb to immaturity through short-sightedness and lack of understanding towards their very own people?
I guess I’ll never really understand them but at least I can say that I’m on the way to understanding myself (which in turn helps me understand you).
Do you know why? It’s because I know how anxiety affects you. Purely because anxiety affects me hugely. That’s why I wrote the title to this post – moving on from anxiety takes a huge amount of guts and shouldn’t be taken lightly.
So, this article today is going to address some pretty big elephants in the room. These so called ‘elephants’ aren’t there to make you feel uncomfortable, however. They are there to address some of your pain points, and are not to be ignored.
Today I’m not going to tell you to get some exercise or try some herbal teas. I’m going to give you some actionable tips to really move forward in your life. I’m not about the fluff in any sense or form, so today this is all about you.
Firstly, remember that we are emotional creatures
Whilst working through the modules on the life coaching qualification I’ve been doing recently, I’ve learned a great deal about human beings as a whole, and what we really are.
I’ve learned that on the one hand we are primal beings that must tend to our humanoid satisfactions (eating, sleeping, mating), but at the same time we have our human emotional desires, too.
Once our primal instincts have been fulfilled, we move onto more. We develop a society, and eventually develop other skills closely connected to that society.
We really should remember that we are emotional beings and our emotional state plays a huge part in our lives.
What I’m getting at is that we are intelligent. We feel emotions on a very real level, and can conjure emotions at the drop of a hat. Therefore, we really should remember that we are emotional beings and our emotional state plays a huge part in our lives.
So, when you feel anxious, angry, sad, grieved, upset, envious, etc., don’t beat yourself up about it. We’ve created these words to describe how we feel for a reason and ignoring these emotions is VERY difficult. Not to mention damaging, too.
Here is a really easy and simple technique to use when you’re finding your emotions are taking over. You need a few moments where you can 100% concentrate on it.
This is what you do:
- Close your eyes and imagine the feeling inside of you right now.
- Spend a couple of moments thinking about this feeling and where it’s come from
- Once you’re there, simple imagine this feeling dropping straight through you into the ground. Just let it fall through you, literally.
If this didn’t work the first time, do it again.
Although this is a short-term temporary exercise, you’re going to feel so much better after. I know I do whenever I do this activity.
Don’t respond immediately – process your thoughts
When we’re in the throes of our emotions, reacting to a situation is very easy to do without thinking about it first. This is especially the case when it comes to anxiety (don’t I know it!). Anxiety puts you on end and can be difficult to control at the best of times.
In addition, when you’re feeling vulnerable, we tend to jump to the worst conclusion and can feel personally attacked because of it. Whether it’s at work or with friends/family, it’s easily done.
So I always suggest taking a step back for a second if you’re feeling like this. Think about why you’re reacting in such a way (can be applied to any situation really).
Quite often you’ll find that the person/thing that’s affecting you in this way has actually no control over you. Me sitting here can call you all the names under the sun but only you choose to feel something because of it.
Instead, process how you’re feeling and consider if you are right in the way you’re thinking. Had this situation be in a court of law (just for example, mind), would your feelings be justified and stand up? Are they valid? What evidence have you got to show you’re valid?
I always suggest taking a step back for a second if you’re feeling like this. Think about why you’re reacting in such a way (can be applied to any situation really).
REALLY spend some time considering your thoughts before you react. This activity makes you more aware of your feelings, so equals being more self aware.
Acknowledge that rejection is going to happen
Anxiety is a product of fear. Fear is normal in our lives and a necessary evil I’m afraid. Without fear, the human race wouldn’t be around today and is a natural defence mechanism we’ve developed to keep danger at bay.
Anxiety makes you fear situations that other people may not think twice about. Anxiety also makes you feel scared of rejection, and scared of failure (becoming extreme at times, causing panic).
Anxiety doesn’t go away overnight. It takes lots of trial and error to find the best solution for you, and for you to understand your own brain better.
Therefore it’s good for you to know that rejection, fear and anxiety are all natural responses to situations that you find yourself in. Learning to forgive yourself and not be so hard on yourself will get you a long way with your anxiety.
If you think about it, anxiety can be controlled. You just need to learn how to do it.
Remember that you’re in it for the long haul
A lot of people come to me advising that want to gain control over their anxiety and just want to feel better. I absolutely understand this as I know how horrible it is when you’re anxious.
But unfortunately, anxiety doesn’t go away overnight. It takes lots of trial and error to find the best solution for you, and for you to understand your own brain better. As you know, I’m in control now, but 4 years after being diagnosed.
REALLY consider all the little wins you’ve gained whilst having anxiety.
I know you want to feel better, but please don’t put pressure on yourself to get sorted. The more you pressure yourself into getting better, the harder it’ll be. After all, if you can’t help yourself, how are you going to help other people?
If you find yourself in this situation, I would suggest writing down all of your achievements so far in life. Focus on the ones that have occurred whilst you’ve had anxiety.
Have you overcome your fear of public spaces? Have you gone to a different part of town on your own (something you wouldn’t have dreamed of before)? Have you gone for a run/walk which took lots of courage?
REALLY consider all the little wins you’ve gained whilst having anxiety. This’ll hopefully show you that although you have anxiety, you are still achieving!
You may want your anxiety to go away, but do you really need it to when you’re already getting out there and doing stuff?
Rise above those that hold you back
A lot of anxiety comes from worrying about what other people are saying about you. Sometimes those who judge you (the ones you probably worry about), hold you back. Figuring out who/what is holding you back is a biggie.
It’s time to rise above this. What I want you to do is really evaluate the areas in your life right now. What outside influences are holding you back right now? Is it toxic relationships? Is it a toxic relationship you have with yourself? Are your family or certain friends holding you down?
If it helps, write down what you’ve just been thinking about. If you don’t have any toxic influences holding you back now – that’s amazing. If not though, get them down on paper. This’ll help you visualise these thoughts/people more easily.
Removing these negative influences means you need to acknowledge the fact they are there in the first place, and really drilling it home. If you’re at this stage now, once you’ve done that, you can work at removing them.
It’s time to rise above this. What I want you to do is really evaluate the areas in your life right now.
How do you do that? Well the negative people in your life can be removed much easier than negative thoughts. You don’t need to go overboard and cause a huge scene, you can just gradually drop them slowly. If it’s thoughts, I’ve written some posts in the past about working at removing them. Read them here and here.
As you can see, conquering your anxiety is a tough task to take up. It is most certainly a long process and can’t be done in the short term. It’s really important to remember this as otherwise you’ll be too hard on yourself and feel like you’ve let yourself down.
Instead, work at the above points and give yourself time. I am nearly over my anxiety now but only after 4 long years. If you think you might need more one on one help, I can help – see below: